Penang’s Fort Cornwallis South Moat restoration nears completion, set to open in July

By NST Regional – March 4, 2024

GEORGE TOWN: Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow has announced that the historic Fort Cornwallis in George Town is on the brink of unveiling its newly renovated south moat to the public on July 7, Buletin Mutiara reported.

This development is part of the extensive restoration efforts aimed at preserving and enhancing the fort’s historical value for future generations.

Following his visit to the site on March 2, Chow expressed optimism about the project’s progress, stating that the completion of the south moat restoration allows the public to reconnect with a crucial piece of Penang’s colonial heritage.

However, the restoration of the west moat is scheduled for a later date, with its opening planned for July 7, 2025.

The RM20 million restoration initiative is spearheaded by the George Town Conservation and Development Corporation, a collaborative venture between the Penang Chief Minister Incorporated and Think City, with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture serving as the technical advisor.

Approximately half of the project budget has been allocated to the excavation and restoration of the fort’s moats, with the remaining funds dedicated to the overall completion of the project.

In addition to the moat restoration, Think City managing director Hamdan Abdul Majeed revealed plans to convert the fort’s conserved storerooms into a museum. The Fort Museum is expected to open its doors by the end of this year, offering visitors insights into the fort’s storied past through curated displays and exhibits.

“We are targeting November or December for the museum opening, as work on the display contents is currently underway,” Majeed said.

Chow also addressed the future of the Astaka Kota Selera, a component of the Fort Cornwallis project, stating that it would be temporarily relocated to facilitate a reconstruction project.

“The Astaka will only be moved within the vicinity,” he said, indicating minimal disruption to the popular local dining spot.

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