Malaysia is planning a new green, energy efficient eco-city called “Iskandar Malaysia”.  The country expects the new development, which covers about 2500 square kilometres, to have 3 million residents by 2025.  All the development’s energy will be provided from renewable sources, the only available transport will be public, and all waste will be utilised for other purposes.  

The Guardian reports Najib Razak, the prime minister of Malaysia, as commenting:

“Iskandar Malaysia [is] a smart city template – protecting the environment, promoting equitable development and addressing urban development challenges [through] the creation of smart, liveable urban communities that will yield an improved quality of life for thousands of citizens, with safer, cleaner, healthier, more affordable and more vibrant neighbourhoods, serviced by more efficient and accessible transportation systems – great destinations for businesses.”

The development aims to be a model of how cities can meet the challenges of increased population and environmental damage from urbanisation.  It also aims to promote social cohesion and the mental well-being of its citizens by providing lots of parks and green spaces where people can meet and relax. 

Perhaps with the increased elderly population in the coming years the time is right for such developments.  Many could be like massive retirement villages with easily accessible transport for the elderly¸ affordable housing with neighbours close by, and lots of group activities in the ‘green spaces’ – and all on eco-friendly terms.  Sounds good to me!

 

Shannon Roberts

Shannon Roberts is co-editor of MercatorNet's blog on population issues, Demography is Destiny. While she has a background as a barrister, writing has been a life-long passion and she has contributed...