THE face of industrial parks in Johor’s Iskandar Malaysia region has evolved in recent years with the introduction of a new generation of developments.
Industrial parks and factory buildings nowadays are no longer looking dull or monotonous unlike in the early days of the country’s industrialisation.
Apart from the modern and contemporary façades, more and more industrial parks are being developed based on the clean-and-green concept.
“Companies planning to set up operations in an industrial park are becoming more demanding; they want more that just a factory building,’’ AME Development Sdn Bhd managing director Kelvin Lee told MetroBiz.
He said the popularity of the gated and guarded concept at housing estates has also prompted developers involved in industrial parks to introduce the concept in their projects.
Lee said the days for dreary-looking industrial buildings are numbered as modern-looking industrial buildings are now in demand from companies and manufacturers.
“Apart from being gated and guarded, the clean-and-green concept is now also the main feature for industrial parks to cater to demands from clients,’’ he said.
Lee noted that the shift from old fashioned industrial parks to more eco-friendly offerings in Iskandar Malaysia had become more visible in the last three to five years. He said, AME Development launched its flagship industrial park — i-Park@Indahpura in Kulaijaya located in Iskandar Malaysia’s Senai-Kulai zone — based on the shift in demand.
The park caters for manufacturers involved in the high technology, precision engineering, oil and gas-related support activities and good-manufacturing practices.
To-date, the park has secured multinational corporations (MNCs) from Canada, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and the United States.
The 42.49ha park will have 73 units of semi-detached and detached (standalone) industrial buildings with a built-up areas ranging from 12,110 sq ft to 130,680 sq ft with prices between RM220 and RM240 per sq ft.
“The project, with a gross development value (GDV) of RM500mil, will keep us busy for the next four years,’’ said Lee.
Meanwhile, director Simon Lee Sai Boon said, apart from the standard built up area, the company also caters for the custom-made industrial buildings based on its customers’ needs or preferences.
He said the company was able to offer the services as it had been involved in the construction of residential, commercial and industrial buildings for third parties in Johor for more than 20 years.
Among the notable projects undertaken by the company include the BMW Parts Distribution Centre, Oriental Assemblers Sdn Bhd, Superfood Technology Sdn Bhd, JB Cocoa Sdn Bhd and Dyson Manufacturing Sdn Bhd.
“Our park will support the low carbon society (LCS) promoted by the Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda),’’ said Sai Boon.
Iskandar Malaysia has been chosen as the case study for the LCS and the data and statistics collected over a period of five years will be used for other parts of the country.
The study, which is already in the second year, covers total energy consumption, CO2 emissions, potential mitigation measures and policy in the areas of building, transportation and solid-waste management.
The Iskandar Malaysia LCS project is supported by the Japan Science Technology Agency and Japan International Cooperation Agency with an RM8mil allocation.
He said the park would be developed through a sustainable development plan by applying low-impact construction methods and landscaping within the industrial park to create a green working environment for its tenants.
Other features include “passive” building designs to reduce heat gain and enhance natural ventilation, rain water harvesting and stringent water and waste management standards.
Sai Boon said there would also be a dormitory complex adjacent to the park with facilities to accommodate between 4,000 and 5,000 workers.
“By having them living nearby, workers can walk or cycle to their workplace; hence it will create minimal carbon footprint,’’ he added.
Sai Boon said 80 units of double-storey shop offices would be developed on a 3.64ha site located just outside the park. The units will be suitable for banks, convenience stores, sundry shops, post offices, food and beverage outlets, support services and showrooms.
He said by having these outlets just a stone’s throw away from the park, tenants and those working there as well as residents nearby did not have to go elsewhere to conduct related transactions.
Sai Boon said, also in the pipeline would be a 2.02ha urban public park adjacent to the project to provide a place for tenants, employees and residents to unwind and relax in after a hard day’s work.
Business development manager Vincent Ho said apart from the i-Park@Indahpura, the company also has another project — i-Park@SiLC in Nusajaya about 18km away from Kulaijaya.
“While our Indahpura park caters for MNCs, our Nusajaya park is suitable for the small and medium enterprises,’’ he said.
The 5.26ha park with 19 units of one-and-a-half storey, double-storey and detached factories with a built up area from 12,785 sq ft to 21,281 sq ft. The factories are priced from RM350 per sq ft and the park, with a GDV of RM74mil, will be completed within the next two years.
Ho said the projects’ strategic location within Iskandar Malaysia’s two flagship development zones — Senai-Kulai and Nusajaya would be their strong selling point. Both parks are easily accessible from the North-South Expressway, Second Link Highway and the Senai-Pasir Gudang-Desaru Expressway.
They have direct air and sea links to Port of Tanjung Pelepas, Senai Airport, Johor Port, Changi Airport and Port of Singapore Authority in Singapore.