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Old February 18th, 2008, 03:51 AM   #481
hkskyline
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Temporary reclamation plan defended in court
6 February 2008
South China Morning Post

Temporary reclamation work for the Central-Wan Chai bypass will be carried out in four phases, with reclaimed land removed as each section of the road's tunnel is completed, a court has heard.

Details of the government's plans for reclaiming 8.3 hectares of seabed in and around Causeway Bay Typhoon Shelter were outlined in the Court of First Instance yesterday.

The Society for the Protection of the Harbour is seeking a declaration in the judicial-review hearing that the government's temporary reclamation plans fall under the Protection of the Harbour Ordinance.

The ordinance established a presumption against all future reclamation of the harbour unless there was "an overriding public need" for the work that was supported by "cogent and convincing materials".

Government counsel Jat Sew-tong said boats moored in each section of the typhoon shelter - with up to 3.9 hectares of moorings affected at any one time - would be moved into a temporary typhoon shelter during the work.

A 4.2-hectare breakwater almost 500 metres from the shore, as well as two wave walls, would be built to protect the boats, including yachts from the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, he told the court.

Mr Jat said the temporary reclamation was not subject to the ordinance because it would be carried out strictly for building the road tunnel and not for forming land - the definition of reclamation in the statute.

Nevertheless, he said both the temporary reclamation and the bypass plan had been drawn up with the ordinance in mind and the "overriding public need" for the road was not disputed.

The method for building the tunnel had been chosen because it involved the least permanent reclamation and everyone involved had sought to minimise the extent of reclamation - both temporary and permanent.

"The tunnel option is clearly the option that would serve best to protect and preserve the harbour," Mr Jat said. He called on Mr Justice Michael Hartmann to make a reference in his ruling to the "strong public interest in progressing with the project".

The breakwater was part of the work, and evidence from the Marine Department indicated there were no viable alternative moorings at other typhoon shelters within the harbour, he said.

But Anthony Neoh, SC, counsel for the society, said the project report on the bypass had stated that the "immersed tunnel" method, which did not involve temporary reclamation, could also be used in the typhoon shelter.

"We have a very incomplete public consultation in relation to the method of construction," he said. "And the society remains unconvinced that the breakwater is the only viable alternative. The yacht club not only has moorings on Middle Island, but also in Sai Kung.

"The government has not complied with its own procedures, which the public have a legitimate expectation to be followed. What is needed is a survey of all the options."

Mr Justice Hartmann reserved his decision on the case.
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Old February 21st, 2008, 05:15 AM   #482
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Study finds access to harbourfront limited
21 February 2008
South China Morning Post

The public will find it difficult to reach about 60 per cent of the Victoria Harbour waterfront by foot or by car, a study has found.

The study, by the Harbour Business Forum, found that areas that were most difficult to reach included Yau Tong, Kwun Tong and To Kwa Wan, where pollution was a problem and cargo areas were located.

The study covered the coastal areas of Victoria Harbour, extending from the Siu Chau Wan point in the west to Chai Wan on the Hong Kong Island side and from Tsuen Wan to Lei Yue Mun on the Kowloon side.

Only 30 per cent of the 94km of coastline is reachable by the public. Nine per cent is under redevelopment or construction.

The coastal areas in Tsim Sha Tsui, Hung Hom and the northeastern part of Tsing Yi allowed direct access to inland areas and to the waterfront promenades, the study said.

About 60 per cent of the harbourfront land was built up, while 21 per cent was used for roads, it said. Vacant land for development takes up 11 per cent and only 6 per cent is allocated for open space.

Joseph Ma Ching-yuen, director of TMA Planning and Design, which commissioned the study, told a Harbourfront Enhancement Committee yesterday that the report aimed to assess the land use compatibility and accessibility of the Victoria harbourfront. "It is a staggering number that over 60 per cent of the harbourfront area is inaccessible," he said.

Mr Ma said Yau Tong was an example of poor coastal land use planning. "A lot of nasty industrial activities are found in the Yau Tong coast, with residential blocks behind them," he said. "The cargo working area in Kwun Tong also makes it difficult for the public to get to."

Mr Ma said development of North Point Estate site would be a good opportunity to connect North Point to Causeway Bay and even to Wan Chai by a promenade.

The study, "What's on Hong Kong's harbour? Land use study for Hong Kong's harbourfront", is online: www.harbourbusinessforum.com .

About 20 hectares of open space along the waterfront will be created after the reclamation works in Central, Wan Chai and North Point are completed, the Development Bureau said in a paper submitted to the Legislative Council.

The figure includes the newly reclaimed areas in Central and Wan Chai, the boardwalk proposed underneath the Island Eastern Corridor, and the public open space designated at the former North Point Estate site and Oil Street site. The areas are expected to be opened to the public after 2010.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 07:05 PM   #483
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3/9























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Old March 15th, 2008, 12:37 AM   #484
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Quote:
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3/9

Is that Union Square in the bg?
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Old March 15th, 2008, 05:53 AM   #485
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^ Most definitely.
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Old March 15th, 2008, 06:20 AM   #486
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Is that a Guess ad under ICC on the Pier?
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Old March 15th, 2008, 05:23 PM   #487
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Is that a Guess ad under ICC on the Pier?
Yes, it is.
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Old March 20th, 2008, 02:41 PM   #488
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RTHK News:
Court ruling hits Central-Wanchai by-pass plans
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Old March 20th, 2008, 10:27 PM   #489
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Interesting. Why are the people against the temporary reclamation, aside from the legal factor?

Are they worried the government will use it as an excuse to make it permanent, or what?
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Old March 21st, 2008, 06:48 AM   #490
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Are they worried the government will use it as an excuse to make it permanent, or what?
Yes, and they claimed that the government didn't go through the consultation for the temporary reclamation. I wonder what if the government only reclaim at sea bed below sea level without exposing to everyone eyes visually but enough to lie down the tunnel on it. Do they still claim that as reclamation? All of their concern is basically Victoria Harbour can't be visually become smaller.

IMO, the Society for Protection of the Harbour won in the court again and earned some applause, but everyone else loses to suffer more and more serious congestion problem in the next 10, 15 maybe even 20 years. And by then who is going to complaint the most? Those people that say no to everything today.
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Old March 27th, 2008, 01:16 PM   #491
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RTHK News:
Harbour ruling could delay rail project

--MTR Tsuen Wan Line would have to be congested for over 10 years.
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Old March 28th, 2008, 10:28 AM   #492
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EricIsHim View Post
Yes, and they claimed that the government didn't go through the consultation for the temporary reclamation. I wonder what if the government only reclaim at sea bed below sea level without exposing to everyone eyes visually but enough to lie down the tunnel on it. Do they still claim that as reclamation? All of their concern is basically Victoria Harbour can't be visually become smaller.

IMO, the Society for Protection of the Harbour won in the court again and earned some applause, but everyone else loses to suffer more and more serious congestion problem in the next 10, 15 maybe even 20 years. And by then who is going to complaint the most? Those people that say no to everything today.
I agree, while I agree that the harbour cannot afford to be any smaller, there are some LOUD nimbys in HK nowadays that are trying to stop everything. I think eventually the public's opinion will win out. Hopefully. This sort of nimbys seriously hinders the development in HK.

There are always compromises that'll have to be made, and I believe the public will be outraged if the government made the reclamation permanent, given the amount of attention paid to it now, and that it will plainly be the government lying should it go through with it.

The harbour people annoy me less than those that are A) trying to save every tidbit that is being torn down, B) trying to enforce ridiculous height limits as the solution to the wall effect, though.

Some of these nutters are going about the problem from the wrong angle. Compromises must always be made. Otherwise I fear HK will turn into the states, where every highway bypass and new building takes 30 years to build, and 1 out of every 100 proposals ever get through. (Exaggerating of course)

The people of HK will ultimately pay the price, slowing infrastructure extensions will increase congestion and travel times, limiting building heights/redevelopment and/or focusing on developing new places will either 1) further reduce the natural environment in HK, or 2) increase property prices even more, and 3) possibly hinder overall growth
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Old March 30th, 2008, 03:24 AM   #493
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gladisimo View Post
I agree, while I agree that the harbour cannot afford to be any smaller, there are some LOUD nimbys in HK nowadays that are trying to stop everything. I think eventually the public's opinion will win out. Hopefully. This sort of nimbys seriously hinders the development in HK.

There are always compromises that'll have to be made, and I believe the public will be outraged if the government made the reclamation permanent, given the amount of attention paid to it now, and that it will plainly be the government lying should it go through with it.

The harbour people annoy me less than those that are A) trying to save every tidbit that is being torn down, B) trying to enforce ridiculous height limits as the solution to the wall effect, though.

Some of these nutters are going about the problem from the wrong angle. Compromises must always be made. Otherwise I fear HK will turn into the states, where every highway bypass and new building takes 30 years to build, and 1 out of every 100 proposals ever get through. (Exaggerating of course)

The people of HK will ultimately pay the price, slowing infrastructure extensions will increase congestion and travel times, limiting building heights/redevelopment and/or focusing on developing new places will either 1) further reduce the natural environment in HK, or 2) increase property prices even more, and 3) possibly hinder overall growth
I absolutely cannot agree more gladisimo. I take it that you live in the US too where you witnessed firsthand the damage NIMBYism can cause.

Hong Kong is no doubt turning into that. However I believe firmly that with Hong Kong people's short-term memory and fickle mind this too will eventually pass. There will still be oppositions, but definitely not as vocal.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 04:37 AM   #494
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Here in Singapore Nimbyism doesn't seem to exist. In Singapore they are doubling the MRT network (equivalent to HK's MTR) and I have not read or seen anything of the public disapproving the projects.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 06:15 PM   #495
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NIMBY is a good thing, without them we will see Singapore and Hong Kong become Dubai, building tower and road for big people and big company not for everybody.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 10:13 PM   #496
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Here in Singapore Nimbyism doesn't seem to exist. In Singapore they are doubling the MRT network (equivalent to HK's MTR) and I have not read or seen anything of the public disapproving the projects.
Could that be b/c public dissent is frowned upon? Or it could be b/c of congestion pricing, more people want more mass transit.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 06:38 PM   #497
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Linking bypass and fate of road pricing is deceitful, say activists
31 March 2008
South China Morning Post

Anti-reclamation activists yesterday criticised the government for linking electronic road pricing with the controversial Central to Wan Chai Bypass.

Activists accused the government of using the road pricing issue to speed up reclamation of Victoria Harbour to build the bypass, a road aimed at easing traffic congestion on Hong Kong Island.

A Sunday Morning Post report said the second feasibility study on electronic road pricing had determined that if the government introduced the charge tomorrow it would have to sting drivers HK$90 for each trip to Central to achieve its aim of cutting traffic 20 per cent.

The study found drivers would need to pay only HK$40 to HK$50 if there was a bypass.

A vocal critic of the government's environmental policy, Albert Lai Kwong-tak, criticised the administration for trying to mislead the public.

"I cannot see a close relation between road pricing and the construction of the bypass. If our aim of having road pricing is to control pollution and ease traffic congestion, drivers can choose not to take private cars and use public transport if they think the fee is too high," said Mr Lai, a Civic Party member.

He said the government could still try road pricing without linking it to any "alternative route".

"For example, we can try it by starting to charge drivers on days with serious pollution or heavy traffic," Mr Lai said.

Legislator Kwok Ka-ki, convenor of the Action Group on the Protection of the Harbour, said: "The government simply wants to create an excuse to justify its reclamation of the harbour. Overseas experience is that building more roads will only encourage more people to drive and would thus result in road congestion in the end.

"Then we are locked in the cycle of building more roads and then more congestion, and then reclaiming more of the harbour."

The Central-Wan Chai Bypass is facing uncertainty and delays after the Court of First Instance blocked 10.7 hectares of temporary reclamation in and around Causeway Bay Typhoon Shelter, saying it should be subject to the 1997 Protection of the Harbour Ordinance.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 07:18 PM   #498
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A vocal critic of the government's environmental policy, Albert Lai Kwong-tak, criticised the administration for trying to mislead the public.

"I cannot see a close relation between road pricing and the construction of the bypass. If our aim of having road pricing is to control pollution and ease traffic congestion, drivers can choose not to take private cars and use public transport if they think the fee is too high," said Mr Lai, a Civic Party member.

He said the government could still try road pricing without linking it to any "alternative route".

"For example, we can try it by starting to charge drivers on days with serious pollution or heavy traffic," Mr Lai said.
This must be one of the biggest jokes ever said by an expert in the industry misleading the public to against the government as well.

If Lai weren't a civil and urban engineer, this statement is totally understandable, but definitely not from him.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:29 PM   #499
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This must be one of the biggest jokes ever said by an expert in the industry misleading the public to against the government as well.

If Lai weren't a civil and urban engineer, this statement is totally understandable, but definitely not from him.
Does he think the people of Hong Kong are retarded?
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Old April 11th, 2008, 03:09 PM   #500
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delete.

Last edited by Aboveday; April 11th, 2008 at 09:06 PM.
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