Thursday, February 11, 2010

Bayan Lepas(峇六拜)

Bayan Lepas

Map of Bayan Lepas

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Bayan Lepas(峇六拜) is the town within South West District or Daerah Barat Daya of Penang Island, Malaysia. Penang International Airport was located in the town. It has a population of about 141,000 people. Bayan Lepas is the main industrial hub of Penang, being home to the Free Industrial Zone, where factories of many multinational companies are located.

Bayan Lepas is in the southeast part of Penang Island. Bayan Lepas include Batu Maung, Kampung Seronok, Kampung Binjai, Permatang Damar Laut. It begin with a small town, which is still exist, just opposite the old police station. In the mid 1970's the new township of Bayan Baru was created, and has since become a major suburb of a greater Penang metropolitan area. There are other townships like Relau, Sungai Ara, Batu Maung, Teluk Kumbar, Bayan Baru. As for electoral districts, Bayan Lepas is under the Parliamentary constituencies, P.053 Balik Pulau, which included N.38 Bayan Lepas, N.39 Pulau Betong, N.40 Telok Bahang. The Batu Maung is however now under P.052 Bayan Baru(N.35 Batu Uban, N.36 Pantai Jerejak, N.37 Batu Maung).

The name Bayan Lepas in Malay means "the parakeet has flown away". Parakeet is a term for any one of a large number of unrelated small to medium sized species of parrot, that generally have long tail feathers. According to the story, a wealthy Sumatran family had arrived by boat at the coast of Bayan Lepas some time in the late 19th century. During the commotion of coming to shore, their pet parakeet escaped. The incident became the basis for naming the place Bayan Lepas. Not only the parakeet has flown away, the fortune of one Scotsman, James Scott was flown away here. James Scott was the partner of Capt Francis Light, he developed a new town just opposite Pulau Jerejak, after hearing that a military base is going to built there. The new town is named Jamestown,a name after himself. However the plan did not materialized and he lost a fortune in Jamestown project and become a bankrupt, his business was later taken over by his partner, David Brown. His fortune was flown away at Jamestown, the Bayan Lepas town. Otherwise, Bayan Lepas will be known as Jamestown....

There was some source reported that Bayan Lepas was named after Raja Bayan or Nakhoda Bayan , a prince of the kingdom of Minangkabau, Sumatra, in modern-day Indonesia. Raja Bayan settled in Penang in the 1700s, when the state was still part of Kedah, a vassal state of Siam , and he was appointed the headman of Penang by the Sultan of Kedah. He gave his name to the suburb of Georgetown called Bayan Lepas. The Minangkabaus are the indigenous people of West Sumatra province in modern-day Indonesia and they originate from the Semelai indigenous people in Bahau (Jempol), Negeri Sembilan and Triang (Bera), Pahang. Raja Bayan is believed to be the relative of the royal family of Negeri Sembilan in Peninsular Malaysia. It was also reported that the first President of Singapore, Tun Yusof Ishak, from Padang Gajah(in Trong), Taiping, Perak was a descendant of Raja Bayan. Is it when Raja Bayan left the place, the village was called Bayan Lepas?... The name of Bayan Lepas is suitable for the place, the area has been an airstrip for Penang since 1900s. The Bayan Lepas airstrip later gradually developed into a modern international airport, and is now known as Penang International Airport, which is the second busiest airport in Malaysia. To the locals, Bayan Lepas is the airport, the airport is Bayan Lepas.

Bayan Lepas is the birth place of former Prime Minister, the 5th Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. His birth place was at Kampong Perlis, Bayan Lepas.

Free Industrian Zone

Home to the Free Industrial Zone, Bayan Lepas is the island’s main industrial hub. The island was a free port until 1969. When the free port status was removed, the state was under difficult time, but under the able leadership of the Chief Minister Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu, Bayan Lepas was developed into a free trade zone. Despite the loss of the island's free-port status, from the 1970s to the late 1990s, the Penang state was able to built up one of the largest electronics manufacturing bases in Asia, in the Free Trade Zone around the Bayan Lepas airport in the south of the island. It was called The Free Trade Zone, but today is the Free Industrian Zone.

A huge number of factories belonging to multinational companies are located here. It is mainly cater for electronic industry. The names included Intel, Motorola, Agilent Technologies, Dell, Jabil Circuit, Flextronics, BBraun, Avago Technologies, Seagates, AMD, Fairchild etc

Tourist attraction

But it’s not all factories and industrial areas here, Bayan Lepas has its own charms and attractions that lots of people still flock to throughout the year, such as the War Museum, Bukit Jambul Orchid and Hibiscus Garden, Snake Temple, and the Fisheries Department Aquarium. Perhaps the most famous tourist attraction in Bayan Lepas is the world famous Snake Temple, located in the area called Sungai Keluang. Note: The land for the snake temple was reported donated by David Brown family.

Snake Temple

The Snake Temple ( 蛇庙) is situated in Sungai Kluang, Bayan Lepas, Penang, Malaysia and is perhaps the only temple of its kind in the world. The temple is filled with the smoke of burning incense and a variety of pit vipers. The vipers are believed to be rendered harmless by the sacred smoke, but as a safety precaution, the snakes have also been de-venomed but still have their fangs intact, visitors are warned against picking up the reptiles and placing them on their bodies for taking pictures. Local devotees believe that the temple's snake population has come there of its own accord.The original name of the temple is actually Hock Hin Keong(福兴宫).

The Taoist temple was built in 1872(光绪卅一年)in memory of Chor Soo Kong(清水公/清水师祖). Chor Soo Kong was born with the Tan surname(陈昭应) in China during the Song Dynasty (960-1279) at Fujian Province(福建安溪县). He was an anti Mongolian hero, who was serious about spiritual attainment and was ordained. Legend has it that Chor Soo Kong, who was also a healer, gave shelter to the snakes of jungle. When he died at the age of 65 at Qing Sui Yuan(清水岩) in 1109, he was honored as Qing Sui Kung or Chor Soo Kong(清水公/清水师祖) by the local residents. A temple was built by a Taoist worshiper who moved to Penang from the same ancestral village. After the completion of the temple, snakes appeared in the temple. The Snake Temple was also originally known as the "Temple of the Azure Cloud"(清云巖) in honor of the beauty of Penang's sky. The locals called the snake green dragon, thus the temple is also know as Temple of green dragons (青龙宫). Believers from as far away as Singapore and Taiwan come to pray in the temple on Chor Soo Kong's birthday (the sixth day of the first lunar month). The temple site was donated by David Brown family.

Bayan Lepas Expressway
Connected to George Town via the Bayan Lepas Expressway which takes approximately half an hour, Bayan Lepas is also home to the island’s international airport and Penang’s biggest shopping mall, Queensbay Mall.

Penang International Airport

Penang International Airport (IATA: PEN, ICAO: WMKP), previously known as Bayan Lepas International Airport, is situated in the Bayan Lepas area of Penang, Malaysia. The airport is located 16 km (10 miles) south of George Town, the capital city of Penang.

Penang International is a medium-sized airport with good connections to major cities in South East Asia. Passengers arriving or departing from the north will have a view of George Town, Butterworth and the Penang Bridge. Waiting times for check-in and baggage claims are relatively short compared to other larger regional airports. The airport is not crowded and basic facilities are available for users.

In 2008, over 3.4 million passengers used Penang International Airport. 43,796 aircraft movements were registered. The airport is the hub of two low-cost carriers, namely Firefly and AirAsia.

Penang International Airport won the Best Emerging Airport (Asia) in 23rd annual Asian Freight and Supply Chain Awards 2009(AFSCA) and Airport of the Year (below 15 million passenger annually) in the 2009 Frost and Sullivan Asia Pacific Aerospace and Defence Awards.

Bayan Lepas Old Town

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The old town of Bayan Lepas is located at the junction between Jalan Dato Ismail Hashim, and Jalan Bayan Lepas. It remained a small old town, lined on both sides with the pre-war colonial double storey shophouses. The narrow old town main street today have become the busy road that lead to Teluk Kumbar, where residential development has built up. This has resulted in traffic bottleneck, and frequent traffic jam happen within the old town. The Bayan Lepas police station is located just fronting the T junction. An old wet market built in 1930 located near to the T junction at Jalan Dato Ismail Hashim. Masjid Bayan Lepas is walking distance to the old town. In old days, when you travelled by the old main road to Balik Pulau, you will go through small towns, similar to old Bayan Lepas town e.g Relau, Sg Ara, Bayan Lepas, Teluk Kumbar etc. Sg Ara town has been demolished, Relau old town is slowly disappeared. These old towns with their narrow main street has been causing traffic bottleneck as the area is developed, and not possible to widen the road, unless the old shops lining the road are demolished. We should retain this old towns, and open a new road for the traffic, but ironically if the traffic by pass the town, that is the end of the town, unless they have a sufficient local population to support it. Bayan Lepas old town should be able to survive, there are villages around the town to support it.

Map of Bayan Baru New Suburb

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Bayan Baru Town

Bayan Baru Town (BBT) is developed by Penang Development Corporation which is an integrated component of Penang State Government since 1972. Bayan Baru Town is situated about 18km south of Georgetown. It is originally an agricultural land before being developed as a new self-contained township to cater for the growing population on Penang Island. BBT is easily accessible via Bayan Lepas Coastal Expressway, Jelutong Expressway, Jalan Jelutong and Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah.

The progress of Penang economy before the recent region economic turmoil have steadily increased retail activities in this area. Retail space subsequently increased from 0.71sq.metre in 1980 to 3.084sq. metre in 1990.

Bayan Baru is located within the area bordered by Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, Jalan Tengah, Jalan Tun Dr Awang. Bayan Baru Town (BBT) is developed by Penang Development Corporation which is an integrated component of Penang State Government since 1972. Bayan Baru Town is situated about 18km south of Georgetown. It is originally an agricultural land before being developed as a new self-contained township to cater for the growing population on Penang Island. BBT is easily accessible via Bayan Lepas Coastal Expressway, Jelutong Expressway, Jalan Jelutong and Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah.

The progress of Penang economy before the recent region economic turmoil have steadily increased retail activities in this area. Retail space subsequently increased from 0.71 sq. metre in 1980 to 3.084 sq. metre in 1990.

The trend of retail space towards the 21st century is more favourable to shopping complexes compared to early 1990s where shophouses are more in demand. Below is a table of shoplots/commercial projects from 1980 to 1998 in Bayan Baru.

Bayan Baru is located next to Bayan Lepas, where Penang airport is. The town was part of the Penang Cybercity Phase 1, which was obtained in 2005. This town was the location of Pantai Mutiara Hospital and a hypermarket named "Giant". Penang International Sports Arena is also situated in Bayan Baru (near to Relau).The Postcode of Bayan Baru is 11950. The first MSC designated building outside Klang Valley, Suntech @ Penang Cybercity is also located here.

Bayan Baru is a satellite township located within Bayan Lepas. It was established by the Penang Development Corporation in the mid-1970's on what was once paddy fields. In the earlier years of Bayan Baru's development, the township was prone to floods - there was a joke back then that purchasing a house in Bayan Baru also includes a sampan. Over the decades, improved drainage has reduced the possibility of major floods, though flash floods still occur during heavy downpours, usually the culprit being blocked drains.

Bayan Baru is one of the most rapidly developed townships in Penang. This is to a large part the direct result of its proximity to the Bayan Lepas Free Industrial Zone, which is a source of employment for a good many people in Penang. The shift in population south, out of George Town and towards Bayan Baru and its immediate neighborhoods, brought with it mixed blessings. The main road, now called Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, has been expanded a few times, and now includes the Bayan Lepas Elevated Highway. New shopping malls have also been built in Bayan Baru and its immediate neighborhood. On the other hand, the growth in population has also introduced traffic congestions and jams, something foreign to the area a decade or two ago. Being caught in traffic jam is now a twice daily occurence, at every rush hour.

The parliament constituency of Bayan Baru includes N35 Batu Uban, N36 Pantai Jerejak and N37 Batu Maung.

Bayan Baru Market

Bayan Baru Market is located within the rectangular square between Jalan Mayang Pasir, Jalan Mayang Pair 1, Jalan Mayang Pasir 3 and Jalan Mayang Pasir 4.

The Bayan Baru Market is actually a community complex, which not only included a market, hawker centre, but also library, and community hall. It is officially known as the Bayan Baru Market Complex and Community Hall (Kompleks Pasar dan Balai Rakyat Bayan Baru). The complex was built by the Penang Island Municipal Council (Majlis Perbandaran Pulau Pinang or MPPP) to cater to the booming township of Bayan Baru. It is located close to Sunshine supermarket, and the Masjid Umar Al Khatab. It is truly a community complex.

The market is the biggest market in the Bayan Lepas area, Penang. The Bayan Baru Market was initially a simple open air market with basic structure, but it was gradually expanded as it served the increasing population of Bayan Baru area. The Bayan Baru Market, the present building within the community complex , was completed in early 2000s. It has a wet market in the front portion(toward Jalan Mayang Pasir) and the dry market which is located closer to the Bayan Baru Hawker Centre(toward Jalan Mayang Pasir 1).

Shopping in Bayan Lepas

After the industrialization of the Bayan Lepas area, the area become residential suburb of the city Georgetown, there are many housing development mushroom in the area to cater for the inflow of population , the employee of the multinational companies and factories to the area. Many new condominiums, housing estates are all still currently under construction. Bayan Lepas is connects to Georgetown via the Bayan Lepas Expressway. Naturally shopping malls and complexes also mushroom in the area to cater for the increased population. Penang's biggest shopping mall, Queensbay Mall, the Bukit Jambul Complex, Penang island's only Giant Hypermarket, and the local company Sunshine Supermarket are all located here.

Sunshine Square

Sunshine Square is a five-storey shopping mall in Bayan Baru, located between Lintang Mayang Pasir 1, and Lintang Mayang Pasir 3. It houses Sunshine Department Store and Supermarket,fast food outlet, food court and parking place. Sunshine Square, an initiative of the Penang Development Corporation, was completed in 1993. To keep up with the times, Sunshine embarks on an upgrading exercise once every couple of years. In 2005, it unveils a new brand logo and corporate image following the refurbishment of the department stores and the expansion of its supermarket into the new wing previously occupied by a food court.

Sunshine Department Store and Supermarket is operated by Suiwah Corporation Berhad, which started as the Swee Wah Mini Market in Air Itam in 1961. Today the department store and supermarket in Bayan Baru continues to be the flagship store of Suiwah Corporation, which also operates the Sunshine Farlim Hypermarket, Sunshine Jelutong supermarket, Sunshine Bukit Mertajam supermarket, Suiwah Air Itam supermarket and the 24-hour Sunshine Lip Sin supermarket at Pan Palace Plaza

Suntech Penang Cyber City

Suntech @ Penang Cybercity, or simply SUNTECH, is an 21-storey office building in Bayan Baru, Penang. The name Suntech is an acronym for Sunshine Technology Tower, and it is located adjacent to Sunshine Square. It is touted as an Intelligent Building with Multimedia Super Corridor infrastructure, and one of the most sophisticated buildings in Penang.

Suntech features six high speed lifts and closed-circuit television at every level. A skybridge offers connection between Suntech and Sunshine Square. It also consist of levels of parking floor.

Penang International Sport Arena

Penang International Sports Arena (PISA) is the largest multi-purpose indoor venue in Northern Malaysia, with the largest capacity of 13,000 for an indoor fully air-conditioned arena. It is located with main entrance at Jalan Tun Dr Awang, rear entrance at Persiaran Mashuri. The PISA Aquatic Centre was at the site beside Jalan Mashuri.

Strategically located in the heart of the growing township of Bayan Baru, the Penang International Arena (PISA) is undoubtedly an impressive event venue in the state. Owned by the Municipal Council (MPPP) and managed by Penevents Sdn Bhd, PISA encompasses a spacious Arena, an Aquatic Center, and a multi-storey car park complex. PISA is today the largest and most comprehensive multi-purpose venue on the island.

With a floor area of 3,000 square meters, the Arena can comfortably accomodates up to 3,000 guests for a sit-down banquet or 140 standard exhibition booths. The Arena surrounded by 10,000 terrace seats that offer audiences unimpeded view of concerts, conventions and other shows. Many state function or state level exhibition and even international level were held here.

Bayan Lepas Food
(still waiting to be completed)

Bayan Lepas Waterfall

The waterfall is located at the right junction of Jalan Dato Ismail Hashim. About a kilometer from the junction, you will see a small signage of the waterfall. Turn left to the waterfall using a small tarred village road. The narrow path takes you straight to the waterfall. The waterfall is not a tourist attraction, but a picnic ground for the locals, one of them was Tun Abdullah, our former Prime Minister.

Sungai Air Terjun or Bayan Lepas Waterfall was made famous by our 5th Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. Our PM used to spend his childhood swimming and picnicking in the crystal clear pool with the serenity atmosphere. Note: Kampong Perlis, Bayan Lepas was Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's birth place.


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