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Old August 1st, 2007, 01:37 PM   #421
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The roof structure and signs can be preserved though. Architecturally there isn't much worth preserving, but perhaps they can set up a mini-museum at the site after the reclamation to showcase Hong Kong's colonial history.
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Old August 1st, 2007, 02:09 PM   #422
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hkskyline you have 25,000 posts is this for real!!!!!!!!!
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Old August 1st, 2007, 03:48 PM   #423
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Hong Kong stirs to save historic pier
Protesters combat high-rise mentality

31 July 2007
International Herald Tribune

Fluffy tiaras, sparkling star-shaped headbands and faux jeweled crowns were a rare light touch among the protesters who had gathered at Queen's Pier to try to save it from near-certain demolition. Beneath the glitter, some wept Sunday at a forum organized by protesters, who oppose plans to tear down the 53-year-old pier to make way for massive land reclamation, a new highway and a shopping mall in what is now the harbor.

Three hunger strikers lay on mats, wilting in the heat. One activist wore an outfit resembling the clock tower at the demolished Star Ferry Pier, with a sign imploring the government to avoid making the same mistake with Queen's Pier. Ten activists even shed blood - their own - to write a banner reading "Do Not Make Another Mistake."

The heavily policed removal of protesters from the Star Ferry Pier in December was an epiphany for some Hong Kong residents, who came by the thousands to say that the unprepossessing structure was a much-loved part of their lives.

"After that pier was demolished we moved to here," Kathy Wong Chui-yee, 23, said at Queen's Pier. "We are having more or less the same mission, which is to get more Hong Kong people to care for our city. Now we can see really more and more people are coming and thinking about our city and this is the greatest success."

Hunger strikes, banners in blood, protest songs and effigies - it sounds like the start of a revolution, and in Hong Kong's conservative, unprotesting society, it almost is.

"I think it shows a general dissatisfaction, especially among the younger generation, against what I call developmentalism," said Ma Ngok, a professor in the department of government and public administration at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

"The sentiment is that we don't need any more high-rises and think the government's policy is too much in favor of land developers," Ma said.

The activists say that Queen's Pier represents free public space for ordinary Hong Kong people and that the government does not listen to the people.

"People can easily see that so much wealth is concentrated among so few, even less than 10 tycoons, who are very rich and influential, not only in Hong Kong but with all sorts of connections in the mainland," Ma said.

The protesters even dare to suggest that Hong Kong does not need another shopping mall. "Yes, it's very new," said Kathy Wong. "Ever since the colonial period, Hong Kong people are quite money-minded. To me what is more important is the people's life. Of course we need commercial buildings, but do we need that many shopping malls?"

"It's not only about the heritage, it's about the lifestyle of the Hong Kong people," said Icarus Wong Ho-yin, a university student, visibly tiring as he led the hunger strike, which began Friday. He said the key issue was public access to free, uncommercial space.

Quite why the clumpy, unremarkable architecture of Queen's Pier should arouse such passion is a mystery to heritage purists. But the pier has a rich daily life as a favorite spot for office workers grabbing a quick lunch, old men playing chess and lovers wandering by night.

On weekends, some of the territory's tens of thousands of off- duty migrant worker maids gather there to play cards, pluck each other's eyebrows, sing gospel songs or doze. Expatriate Hong Kongers have loved Queen's Pier too, remembering it as the start of many a happy junk party, an all-day or night-time harbor cruise featuring large amounts of food, drink and hijinks.

The Antiquities Advisory Board gave the pier a Grade One historic rating in May, but this does not require the pier's preservation on its original site. But the government has promised to cut it into sections for storage. Demolition has been promised before the end of July, and protesters are braced for a forced removal. The government has said it will store the sections of the pier, probably on the outlying island of Lantau, while a new location is considered.

At the forum Sunday, the newly appointed secretary for development, Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, took the unusual step of visiting. She drew jeers and boos when she said the project in the central harbor area, which was approved in the 1990s, was too far along to be changed now. It is expected to cost 3.5 billion Hong Kong dollars, or about $450 million.

Lam's appearance on the pier was "a gesture the government had to make," said Ma, who added that heritage was a handy beachhead for broader politics because "nobody can disagree that heritage needs to be protected."

Icarus Wong, said, "Actually I don't think the government listens to us. But this is just the beginning of this campaign because Hong Kong is going into a period of urban renewal."

Ordinary Hong Kong people have a growing sense of identity rooted in this place.

"Hong Kong people are very attached to many things about Hong Kong, but people who are in powerful places who make decisions about how the city looks like, they don't understand the depth and breadth of these feelings," said Christine Loh, a former legislator who now runs the Civic Exchange, a research organization. "They don't understand they do matter because that is our memory, that is our culture, that is our identity."

Queen's Pier, beginning with its 1925 wooden incarnation, was where royalty docked and governors started and ended their terms of office when Hong Kong was a British colony. That has led to some criticism of those who are trying to preserve it, but has also produced yet another argument for saving it.

"Of course we are anti-colonialist, we have to emphasize that," said Anthony Leung Po-shan, an artist and activist. "What we're doing here is to de-colonize Hong Kong. Even though we are returned to China, after 10 years we still feel like we are living in a colony.

"Because the colonial government structures never change, and the colonial system is a very effective suppression to local people. What we are trying to do here is to keep it as a testimonial of the colonial rule. If we don't have this living history standing in the middle of the city, people will just have very naive thinking."
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Old August 1st, 2007, 11:04 PM   #424
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Police remove Hong Kong pier protesters after standoff
by Stephanie Wong Wed Aug 1, 11:16 AM ET

HONG KONG (AFP) - Police late Wednesday rounded up the last of the campaigners protesting against the demolition of a colonial-era Hong Kong pier, the latest flashpoint in the struggle between developers and defenders of the city's heritage.

Queen's Pier, the traditional landing point for visiting dignitaries including Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Diana, has been occupied since April by protesters trying to stop it being destroyed for a new bypass.

The pier is expected to be taken down and later rebuilt in another location but the government has not decided how and when this will happen.

A High Court decision Tuesday allowed for a full hearing on whether the structure should enjoy special protection, preventing its destruction. But the government said the ruling did not invalidate the existing eviction order.

The government had warned the activists to leave the pier by Wednesday or face prosecution and costs incurred by delaying the project.

Some 200 police officers, a cherry-picker and a dozen marine officers moved in early Wednesday to evict the protesters. At least 17 campaigners -- including three on their fifth day of a hunger strike -- were chained together, forcing police to use bolt-cutters to remove them, an AFP reporter at the scene witnessed.

Minor scuffles later broke out as dozens of angry campaigners tried to breach the police barrier and return to the pier. Some of them were pinned down by officers and dragged away, local TV images showed.

Seven protesters refused to leave the roof of the pier, chanting slogans calling on the government to drop its demolition plan, prompting officers in climbing gear to remove them using a cherry-picker. After three hours of negotiations, the last activist was finally pulled to safety.

The pier has become a symbol of Hong Kong's struggle to maintain its British colonial heritage, which preservationists say could disappear as property developers look to turn prime real estate into big profits.

The nearby Star Ferry pier and clock tower were also demolished in March as part of a harbour reclamation project, and became a touchstone issue for many of the same protesters. Other sites at risk include a 140-year-old street market and a downtown colonial-era police station.

The Queen's Pier -- built more than 50 years ago to replace an older one -- was designated a "structure of outstanding historical merit" in May, but the government rejected calls to list it as a protected monument, saying it did not have the required historical significance.

Secretary for Development Carrie Lam said she believed the government's project had the support of the public and pledged to protect the city's heritage in future. "We are working very hard on a new strategy to preserve Hong Kong heritage buildings," she told reporters.

Noting the public's concern over the pier, Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang said he was sincere about maintaining dialogue with the conservationists in future development projects. "The government will strive to strike a balance between development and conservation so as to reflect the general feeling and interests of the community," the chief executive said.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070801...e_070801151241
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Old August 5th, 2007, 10:02 AM   #425
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Removal of pier vital, says development chief
5 August 2007
South China Morning Post

The development chief yesterday reiterated that there was a pressing need to dismantle Queen's Pier to make way for the Central-Wan Chai bypass to solve traffic congestion.

Because of disputes and court cases surrounding the Central reclamation phase 3, Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said the bypass and P2 road - a four-lane Central-Admiralty link - originally scheduled for completion in two years, would not be ready until 2016 at the earliest.

"The traffic congestion problem caused by the delay will become more and more obvious," she said on RTHK's Hong Kong Letter.

The government says the roads will alleviate traffic congestion and provide connections to existing and future road networks in Central, Wan Chai and Causeway Bay.

Pledging to strike a balance between conservation and development to avoid further confrontations, Mrs Lam vowed to work with the public to solve the "complicated and controversial conservation issues".

"I hope that in the future I can continue communicating with those who care about heritage conservation - including those students and scholars who have stayed at Queen's Pier - and that everybody can adopt an open and pragmatic attitude in the discussions," she said.

Although disagreeing with the activists' demand for the pier to be preserved, she acknowledged the persistence and passion that led them to stay at the pier, with some even staging a hunger strike.

"Three days ago, the government smoothly took back the land at Queen's Pier which was occupied for a few months, and the three young people have already stopped their hunger strike. Yet I believe, and hope, that their belief in supporting local culture and conservation of historic heritage will not be diminished," Mrs Lam said.

Although Mrs Lam attended an open forum and met the protesters at the pier last Sunday, the minister said this was not the best means for genuine exchanges and consensus-building.

She said both the Central reclamation phase 3 and the assessment of the historic value of Queen's Pier complied with legal and public consultation requirements, as well as having the support of Legco and relevant statutory and advisory bodies.

The government's decision to demolish the pier and rebuild it on a site yet to be determined showed it tried its best to respond to conservationists' demands, she said.

Last Wednesday, hundreds of police were sent to clear the protesters at Queen's Pier.

In his first public comment on the operation, Commissioner of Police Tang King-shing hailed it as a success, saying that the protesters' safety had been the force's prime concern.

He also said police had so far received three complaints relating to the operation, which included accusations that officers assaulted protesters.
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Old August 5th, 2007, 11:04 AM   #426
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A growing awareness
Activists will be judged far more sympathetically by history than those who wrecked our harbour

4 August 2007
South China Morning Post

When the history of Hong Kong in the first decade of the new millennium comes to be written, will anyone hail the "great" achievement of destroying historic piers to build a new six-lane highway across the harbourfront?

On the other hand, what will history have to say about the people who battled to save Hong Kong's heritage, and finally put to rest the wicked lie that the people of this special administrative region care only for money and themselves?

The job of historians is to put events into context and evaluate trends that help form the development of society. Given the nature of their task, it is likely that our historians will regard the present period as an important time in which civil society developed at a pace faster than at any time in the past.

They will see a trend which was astonishingly manifest on July 1, 2003, when the streets filled with people protesting against the repressive Article 23 anti-subversion legislation; they will note that even after the people succeeded in quashing this legislation they still came out to protest, hoping for other changes.

The genie of protest, all of it peaceful, has erupted out of the bottle with a force that still takes government officials by surprise. The spirit of public assertiveness will not meekly disappear; on the contrary the government now feels the heat when it sets out to do its worst.

The old Star Ferry terminal was spontaneously filled with people vainly attempting to prevent its demolition and, this week, protesters struggled to prevent the demolition of the adjacent Queen's Pier.

From the comfortable perch of their well-appointed offices in Lower Albert Road, senior bureaucrats will take comfort from the fact that both these protests failed to achieve their ends.

Possibly next to go is Hong Kong's oldest market in Central, and then the former police headquarters in Hollywood Road may suffer a similar fate. As the wrecker's ball thunders down on these old structures, officials will sing the praise of progress and affirm the triumph of pragmatic officials getting the job done.

Such is the hubris that exists in Lower Albert Road and among the tame poodles in the Legislative Council, most of whom have never faced a real election, but know how to raise their hands when instructed to do so.

Yet their victories have been of a purely pyrrhic nature. While officials have been destroying our heritage and engaging in a sophisticated battle to keep the people from electing their own government, society has been developing in ways they appear not to even understand.

Who would have thought that anyone would have bothered to defend the ageing Star Ferry pier when, not so long ago, the government managed to demolish the old Murray Building without a murmur? Who would believe that, almost two decades after the brutal suppression of the mainland's democracy movement, Victoria Park would still be filled with people of all ages honouring the victims?

And the increasing awareness of civil society is not just seen in these big issues. Even where I live, in rural Hong Kong, district officials complain they are overwhelmed by an increasing number of people writing in and phoning them about planning matters, hygiene issues and practically everything else.

The fact that pyrrhic victories have been scored over the people who are taking an interest in the fate of their community is absolutely no guarantee that the old authoritarian ways can go on forever.

Pressure is building; it is up to the government whether it wishes to try and resist community involvement, or harness it for a better future.

Many people will say the activists who tried to save Queen's Pier were wasting their time. I believe history will judge them far more sympathetically, and recognise their contribution to an awakening in Hong Kong which has the potential to build a community that has much to contribute. History will be far less kind to those who wrecked the harbour and put their faith in six-lane highways.

Stephen Vines is a Hong Kong-based journalist and entrepreneur
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Old August 6th, 2007, 02:01 AM   #427
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Maybe we need a more drastic and upfront push to stop the demolitions of all of those historically important landmarks...something from V for Vendetta anyone?
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Old August 6th, 2007, 04:52 AM   #428
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It's a good thing people are getting more active in voicing concerns over urban developments these days, whether it is about skyscraper walls or historic preservation. However, the government is also right by saying they did the consultation beforehand but changing values have caused clashes by the time the shovels got into the ground.
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Old August 7th, 2007, 02:51 AM   #429
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RTHK News:
High Court to rule on Queen's Pier status
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Old August 7th, 2007, 06:02 AM   #430
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What if the conservationists succeed? Will that stop the reclamation indefinitely? Is it technically and economically feasible to keep the structure there and reclaim around it?
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Old August 7th, 2007, 08:25 AM   #431
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Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
What if the conservationists succeed? Will that stop the reclamation indefinitely? Is it technically and economically feasible to keep the structure there and reclaim around it?
The whole court argument is only on should the Queen's Pier structure be saved or not. There is nothing to do with the reclamation. And previous court case had approved the reclamation at the Final Court, which can't be turned over.

Technically, it is absolutely possible to reclaim around the structure and construct all the infrastructures that have been proposed by the government master plan. The conservationists had suggested this method to the government under the help of professional engineers, architects, planners and others.

Economically, I can't tell the exact number, but it's not going to be something infeasible. The construction won't be anymore expensive (excluding inflation), but it just costs more to redesign reclamation process near the pier, the P2 road alignment and underground infrastructure. We still have time to do the redesign while the rest of the area is being reclaimed. It's not like we can't proceed any further just because the Pier will sit there and obstruct the construction. There will be delay for sure, but it's not gonna be a very long time.
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Old August 7th, 2007, 10:49 AM   #432
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Originally Posted by EricIsHim View Post
The whole court argument is only on should the Queen's Pier structure be saved or not. There is nothing to do with the reclamation. And previous court case had approved the reclamation at the Final Court, which can't be turned over.

Technically, it is absolutely possible to reclaim around the structure and construct all the infrastructures that have been proposed by the government master plan. The conservationists had suggested this method to the government under the help of professional engineers, architects, planners and others.

Economically, I can't tell the exact number, but it's not going to be something infeasible. The construction won't be anymore expensive (excluding inflation), but it just costs more to redesign reclamation process near the pier, the P2 road alignment and underground infrastructure. We still have time to do the redesign while the rest of the area is being reclaimed. It's not like we can't proceed any further just because the Pier will sit there and obstruct the construction. There will be delay for sure, but it's not gonna be a very long time.
So this is about the government's resistance to change its road infrastructure plans?
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Old August 7th, 2007, 03:21 PM   #433
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Pier pressure builds in Hong Kong

By Stephanie Holmes
BBC News

Everyone in Hong Kong seems to agree on one thing about Queen's Pier, a 1950s-built platform at the centre of violent protests about its future: it is no architectural masterpiece.


But the white concrete structure, which sits diminutively on the edge of Victoria Harbour, amid the city's shining skyscrapers and endless high-rises, evokes powerful reactions.

Plans to pull it down to make way for a by-pass have been greeted with angry protests, all-night vigils and even hunger strikes.

A very vocal section of Hong Kong's normally conservative, pragmatic residents have been fired up at what they see as the latest attempt to bulldoze one of the city's rapidly diminishing number of colonial-era structures.

Past and future

A court in Hong Kong is due to begin hearing an application on 7 August challenging the decision to remove the structure.

"This is another little piece of Hong Kong's history," says Stephen Davies, director of Hong Kong's Maritime Museum.

"Queen's Pier was always part of the eye-line, a familiar landing point. If you ask the average Hong Kong resident about the island's waterfront that's what they would say - it's Star Ferry, it's Queen's Pier," he told the BBC News website.

The current structure, built in 1954, was created to serve a ceremonial and symbolic function, becoming the first point where the new governors of Hong Kong would arrive on land.

When Hong Kong was handed back to China in 1997, it was from Queen's Pier that the final governor, Chris Patten, departed.

For Ronald Lu, president of the Hong Kong Institute of Architects, the pier is an intricate part of the territory's history.

"Architecturally, it is not a significant masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination," he says.

"But it has a legacy. If we forget about Queen's Pier then there is no relationship between Hong Kong and its history. It needs to be explained to future generations that Hong Kong is different to other cities in mainland China," he says.

Rocking the boat

The protests - organised by students, conservationists, environmentalists and civic action groups - have paid off so far and the pier, closed in late April, won a last-minute reprieve in early August.

A judicial review will now evaluate whether the government should reconsider a decision not to classify the structure as a monument, which would save it.

For Steve Tsang, of St Anthony's College, Oxford, the campaign to save Queen's Pier is motivated by a mixture of sentimentality and practicality.

"It [the destruction of Queen's Pier] represents unrelenting development, environmental degradation and disregard of heritage sites. That is what people are reacting against," he says.

"While people feel pretty powerless to stop polluted air passing over Hong Kong, at least they can actively try to save the pier," he told the BBC News website, adding that it was also probably the site of many a first kiss.

Ten years after the handover, he said, people feel more confident about speaking out.

"It's not that unusual that people get sentimental. In fact, the real question is, in such a wealthy society, why people aren't more demanding?" he asks.

The destruction of the pier is part of a broader redevelopment project to improve the city's infrastructure, and some of the reclaimed land will help build what the government says are vital transport links across Hong Kong.

Invisible sea

Even the Institute of Architects - which supports the protesters' aims, if not their methods - understands the government's infrastructure dilemma.

"Hong Kong has good crossings from north to south of the island but not from east to west," acknowledges Mr Lu. "The government is trying to address traffic problems."

As Mr Tsang adds, "In development terms, Hong Kong has a history of caring about some of its sites and heritage, but there just hasn't been as much of a desire to preserve as one would expect."

For the past 150 years, Hong Kong has been a city in flux.

It was transformed from a trading port into a centre for light industry and, in its latest incarnation, a global hub for the services industry.

Change is part of Hong Kong's DNA. With those changes Hong Kong has reclaimed land from the sea, swallowing more of its own harbour and altering its waterfront each time.

"Since 1841, the waterfront has moved forward four times," says Stephen Davies. "Hong Kong island has been moving seawards since the 1850s and becoming progressively bigger.

"What actually made Hong Kong - its sea trade - has become invisible."

------------
Quoted from: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asi...933255.stm#map
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Old August 7th, 2007, 03:47 PM   #434
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So this is about the government's resistance to change its road infrastructure plans?
Indeed, yes. The structure is a dead object, but everything on paper is life and can be moved around. And we don't even have the land to build right now, engineers just need to have more thinking on how to rework the plans.

At first, the government did say it was a technical issue. But since the conservationists purposed the win-win solution, the government stopped saying it's a technical issue, but a schedule and traffic issue to have the project completed as soon as possible.
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Old August 17th, 2007, 07:49 PM   #435
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2007年7月27日
http://www.news.gov.hk/tc/category/i...727tc06007.htm
灣仔北填海面積降至5.7公頃

灣仔、銅鑼灣及北角,以及灣仔與尖沙咀之間的維多利亞港約50.6公頃的前濱及海床範圍,擬展開海床浚挖和填土工程,闢拓約12.7公頃土地,建造約1,570米海堤、約550米排污渠口管道、約1,100米海底水管,以及打樁渡輪碼頭。

有關工程今天刊憲,公告連同相關圖則已張貼於工程地點附近的告示板上。工程2008年年底或2009年年初展開,預計2016年完成。

修訂北角分區草圖

任何人如認為他擁有在該前濱及海床或其上的權益、權利或地役權,可在9月27日或之前,向地政總署署長交付書面通知。地址是北角渣華道333號北角政府合署20樓。

城市規劃委員會宣布,修訂北角分區計劃大綱草圖,以反映中環灣仔繞道的相關設施及導致的修改。

這些修訂,包括中環灣仔繞道出口上的園景平台,油街附近的行政大樓及輔助道路,近屈臣道的通風大樓,近維多利亞公園的支路及重組道路,北角海旁的海濱休憩用地及美化市容地帶以及建議中由維多利亞公園伸延的園景平台。

修訂加入高度限制

海景大廈、海峰園及食物環境衞生署的車房的用途地帶界線,以及海景大廈所在地的用途地帶區劃,也因中環灣仔繞道計劃而須修改。

該分區計劃大綱圖的註釋也相應作出修訂,包括就中環灣仔繞道行政大樓及通風大樓,加入高度限制及其外部設計須取得規劃許可的要求,以及為東區走廊以南範圍加入高度限制和就海景大廈加入總樓面面積限制。

北角分區計劃大綱草圖編號S/H8/21已上載城市規劃委員會網頁。任何人士可於本年9月27日或之前,就有關修訂向城市規劃委員會秘書作出申述。

城規會今天宣布,修訂灣仔北分區計劃大綱草圖,主要反映由於填海面積由26.4 公頃大幅減至約5.7公頃而縮減的規劃圖範圍。

不影響香港遊艇會

建議填海範圍為興建中環灣仔繞道的最小所需面積,該繞道以隧道形式興建。

建議的用途地帶修訂主要反映在灣仔、銅鑼灣避風塘周邊及避風塘東面和北面防波堤建議的海濱休憩用地、為加添海濱活力和多樣性而設的與海旁有關的商業及休憩用途,以及公共海濱長廊和與水上康樂有關的用途。

香港遊艇會將不會受影響,並重新劃作體育及康樂會所用途。

為了提高行人與海濱的連繫,在灣仔會議展覽中心西面建設3個園景平台,橫跨鴻興道,連接維多利亞公園。

重置海水抽水站

有關的擬議修訂還包括重置港灣道體育中心、灣仔游泳池及灣仔北公共運輸交匯處的地點;重置海水抽水站及擴建位於運盛街的灣仔東污水隔篩廠的地點;把天后廟船重置在避風塘東南一角的可行地點;以及在近會議道設立旅遊巴停車場的地點。

修訂的分區計劃大綱草圖同時劃定填海後重置灣仔現有渡輪碼頭的範圍。

有關的擬議修訂也預留土地,為擬建的北港島線和沙中線鐵路提供車站設施及通風大樓,以及於銅鑼灣避風塘東面的防波堤設置中環灣仔繞道的汽車隧道排氣口。

灣仔北分區計劃大綱草圖連同修訂圖編號O/S/H25/1-B已上載至城規會網頁。公眾人士可於7月27日至8月10日期間,就有關的擬議修訂向城規會秘書送交書面反對意見。
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Old August 18th, 2007, 06:58 PM   #436
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Conservationists are pissing me off, as always, lol.

Things like this will be the downfall of Hong Kong.
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Old August 20th, 2007, 05:09 AM   #437
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Residents in dark over Hung Hom waterfront scheme
Hong Kong Standard
Thursday, August 16, 2007

More than half of residents have never heard of the Hung Hom waterfront development plan, nor do they have any clue as to where the plan is heading, according to a recent survey.

Democratic Party and Kowloon City District Council vice chairman Chan Ka-wai commissioned the survey, held in July and August to ascertain the views of Hung Hom residents on the waterfront redevelopment project. A total of 312 people responded to the questionnaire.

The survey was called after the Planning Department's first phase public consultation on the project ended in March.

More than 54 percent of the respondents said they had never heard of the project while 90.5 percent said they had no idea what stage the project is currently at.

Chan said the survey reflected the government's failure to publicize the consultation process.

"The consultation was not very clear. I am not surprised the public has no idea what is happening," he said.

"The first phase consultation report is also not clear on the people's views, rather it focused on the views of specialists and scholars."

According to the survey, the most immediate concerns of the residents were air pollution and a lack of green space in the area, with, respectively, 66.9 percent and 58.8 percent thinking improvements in these areas are necessary.

In addition, more than half the respondents feared the redevelopment will result in a wall of skyscrapers on the waterfront, blocking air flow.

Chan said the department's report did not address questions such as the height of the waterfront buildings, the actual ratio between public areas and commercial buildings, or traffic management.

Together with representatives from the Civic Party, Chan met with Planning Department assistant director Raymond Wong Wai-man yesterday.

After the meeting Chan said their views were not far off each other and that there was general agreement that the waterfront promenade should remain the focus of the project. The department also promised more concrete details in the second phase of the consultation process next month such as the exact location of green space and buildings.

Civic Party district developer for Hung Hom Linda Wong Shui-hung said the department had indicated it would like to see the waterfront promenade extended from Hung Hom to Kai Tak.

Sited in the center of the future promenade is the Kowloon Permanent Pier, site of Cheung Kong Infrastructure's former Green Island cement plant.

On August 3, The Standard reported that disgruntled residents of the nearby residential complex Laguna Verde had marched to a Town Planning Board meeting in a bid to block an application by logistics company DHL Express to turn the area into a distribution center, fearing air pollution and traffic accidents.

In light of the protest, the board put off a decision and classified the future use of the pier as "undetermined."
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Old August 20th, 2007, 05:38 AM   #438
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I had no idea there was a Hung Hom development plan, are there proposals?
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Old August 29th, 2007, 05:07 AM   #439
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Advisers want power over harbour plans
Watchdog seeks authority to take over management of waterfront

28 August 2007
South China Morning Post

The government-appointed harbour watchdog will press the administration to consider giving it statutory powers that would transform it into a harbour authority to take over management of the waterfront.

The issue will be a key item on the agenda when the newly reappointed Harbour Enhancement Committee resumes its meetings next month, the chairman and newly appointed members say.

Chairman Lee Chack-fan, who is staying on for a second term, said a feasibility study should be launched into forming a harbour authority.

He said the study should explore different frameworks for managing the harbour areas, and one of the models could be transforming the committee into an authority in the long run.

"It is an evolving process, and it can be achieved when we gain the public's trust," he said.

Another newly appointed member, Nicholas Brooke, said he had written to the Development Bureau calling on the government to consider empowering the committee to manage waterfront areas.

"The committee has proved that it can engage the public," he said. "It can grow and be used as a vehicle to implement some of the ideas."

Under its new terms of reference, the committee - formed in 2004 after the government was battered by a series of judicial reviews of its harbour-front plans - is asked to explore a sustainable framework for managing the harbour area, including public and private partnership.

It is also given important tasks of engaging the public in controversial projects, including the new Central waterfront and the West Kowloon development.

Professor Lee said setting up a new framework might require revision of the law, which was time-consuming, but it should be set as a long-term goal for the government.

"Learning from the experience of managing Toronto's waterfront, it would be difficult for a body without statutory power to improve waterfront areas efficiently," he said, adding that an authority would enhance the co-ordination of various departments now responsible for different aspects of harbour management.

Hardy Lok Kung-chin, who represents the Society for Protection of the Harbour on the committee, said the society would pursue the issue of a harbour authority at forthcoming meetings.

Various government departments including Lands, Marine and Environmental Protection, are involved in harbour management.

Committee members said disharmony among departments and development interests had slowed down the implementation of a continuous and public-friendly promenade around the harbour.

The committee, which was initiated by Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Secretary for Development and the former permanent secretary for housing, planning and lands, has already settled conflicting views about planning for Kai Tak, the Wan Chai reclamation and the need to build a controversial Central-Wan Chai bypass.

Now, the committee will have to take up more challenging tasks in Central, including the relocation of Queen's Pier.

Professor Lee said the committee would engage the public more closely, including pier activists from the Local Action group.

The government, which has previously rejected activists' calls for an independent authority to manage the harbour, had no immediate comment.
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Old August 31st, 2007, 06:49 PM   #440
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Government rejects harbour authority idea
29 August 2007
South China Morning Post

The government has rejected the idea of turning its harbour advisory committee into a statutory body - sparking criticism that it is throwing out the notion before it has even been formally discussed.

A Development Bureau spokeswoman said yesterday that a harbour authority would involve complicated issues and "we do not see sufficient merit in the proposal at this stage".

She was responding to suggestions from members of the newly reappointed Harbourfront Enhancement Committee that it could eventually become a statutory body to manage the area.

Members plan to discuss the idea when the committee resumes meeting next month.

The spokeswoman's response echoed government reaction when the idea was floated by harbour activists.

Committee member Nicholas Brooke said the government had reached the conclusion far too early.

"Clearly it is under the committee's terms of reference to discuss the issue; the government is pre-empting the situation," he said, adding it should be the committee that came up with recommendations for the government.

Committee chairman Lee Chack-fan said setting up an authority would require legislation, and the issue should have been left for discussion among members.

Meanwhile, the business sector supports the call for a more effective institution to manage waterfront areas.

A study commissioned by the Harbour Business Forum will recommend options for improving the current management, and it will be completed in three to six months.

Andrew Thomson, a spokesman for the forum, said the study would gather overseas examples of designing, developing and managing waterfront areas. It will also come up with recommendations for local implementation. He added that an institution like the Airport Authority would be good for integrating all harbour-related issues.

"We must look for institutional arrangements that cut across jurisdictional boundaries, resolve conflicts and action improvement programmes," he said. "We believe this is one of the most important factors in the delivery of a world-class waterfront in line with the harbour planning principles and guidelines."

The forum, an independent organisation of more than 120 leading business members including property developers, issued a list of harbour planning principles in June.
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