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Old December 11th, 2013, 11:12 AM   #841
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9/8 - the greenery is starting to take shape :

image hosted on flickr

Victoria Harbour by iSilent, on Flickr
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Old December 13th, 2013, 04:43 AM   #842
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By Asus01 from dcfever :

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Old December 27th, 2013, 07:06 PM   #843
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When do they expect the promenade along the waterfront to be completed?
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Old December 29th, 2013, 08:34 AM   #844
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Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post
When do they expect the promenade along the waterfront to be completed?
Bits and pieces have opened. You can now walk from the Star Ferry to Tamar.
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Old January 27th, 2014, 07:11 PM   #845
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Hundreds join show of pedal power
Enthusiasts get on their bikes in battle for harbourfront cycleway

19 January 2014
South China Morning Post

To the sound of hundreds of bicycle bells trilling in Kennedy Town, more than a thousand cyclists yesterday braved crowded roads to drive home their message: the need for a harbourfront cycleway along the waterfront from Kennedy Town to Heng Fa Chuen.

The two-wheeled warriors cycled from Kennedy Town to Sai Wan Ho, often forced to ride along roads a considerable way from the waterfront itself.

"I was born in Holland, so I was born with a bicycle - the only way to get around," Pok Fu Lam district councillor Paul Zimmerman, who took part in the ride, told the cyclists gathered at the start. "I was four years old when I started riding a bicycle."

He said the government was terrified of potential accidents, but also gave the example of the recent opening of the Shenzhen promenade to cyclists and pedestrians. "There is only one condition, a speed limit of 15 km/h. If that's what it takes, let's convince [the] government it is safe."

Martin Turner, chairman of the Hong Kong Cycling Alliance and one of the organisers of yesterday's event, welcomed the non-regular cyclists who had hired bicycles to take part. "Cyclists should be able to move freely along the harbourfront. Families could come to the harbour, hire a bike from a rental place and ride," he said.

Television commercial producer Jackie Yau, 45, brought her family along. "It's great for exercise, but even in country parks, everywhere you can't ride," she said, hoping the government could change this. "The future is with our children, which is why I've brought my son along."

Australian Ellie Holloway, 11, had come with her father from Sham Tseng. "It would be nice to have a harbourfront bike path," she said, "because there aren't many paths around."

The cyclists unfurled a banner near Central opposing the military pier that is expected to limit public access to the harbourfront.

Zimmerman, Turner and Democratic Party vice-chairman and lawmaker Sin Chung-kai also handed in a petition signed by the cyclists to the Development Bureau in North Point demanding the government build a cycleway.

Democratic Party legislator Wu Chi-wai stressed the government shouldn't see the issue in terms of just leisure cycling but provide markings on the side of roads for serious commuters.

Katty Law Ngar-ning, convenor of the Central Harbourfront Concern Group who was participating in the event for a second straight year, warned that the government had broken its promise of returning the harbour to the public by rezoning an area for the military pier, resulting in the longest hearing by the Town Planning Board in its history in November last year.

Harbourfront Commission chairman Nicholas Brooke said the body was supportive of a track for both cyclists and pedestrians along the harbourfront. But responsibility for the hoped-for cycleway would fall across several government departments, he said, adding that he hoped a planned harbour authority would come into being as a single delivery agency.

6 - The number of "harbourfront" cycle rides staged in the past four years
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Old March 21st, 2014, 05:19 PM   #846
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Where can Hong Kong reclaim more land for development?
24 February 2014
China Daily

Financial Secretary John Tsang recently made it clear that land reclamation will be an option in Hong Kong. Land reclamation is efficient, relatively cheaper (as compensation to the indigenous residents is not needed) and can be used for designated purposes. The government has the full right to use reclaimed land. There are numerous advantages stemming from land reclamation. Most importantly, land can be reclaimed for a specific use.

Firstly, no one expects land reclamation to be around harbor areas, but it can be done in remote regions and for purposes which will enhance future economic development. Secondly, with newly reclaimed land, land use can become more flexible, including the possibility of switching from one type of use to another to maximize social benefits. Thirdly, other than having more residential land in mind, newly reclaimed land can foster new industries and activities. These can widen Hong Kong's industrial and economic base so more jobs will be available. In other words, one cannot expect any results in the short term, but land reclamation is a long-term policy and both resources and time are needed.

There could be opposition, typically from the environmental protectionists and those who do not want growth in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong economy is more or less at full economic capacity, but further growth and expansion is still needed to provide more opportunities for future generations. Thus, while additional land can be reclaimed, the process of land reclamation should also consider environmental factors.

In addition, the Hong Kong population is growing and additional employment is needed. The economy cannot stand still, but must create more opportunities and new areas. Land reclamation can also be politicized, as controversy will arise as to which districts get more and so on. The major concern is the welfare of the more than 7 million residents in Hong Kong - not just a section of residents. The intention is to allow Hong Kong to expand its economic pie so everyone, especially future generations, can have a piece.

In fact, now is the right time for making long-term commitments in the widening of land resources because we do not face an immediate crisis. The government has the fiscal capacity for infrastructure development. Of course, one can make numerous suggestions about land reclamation. But the proposals must maximize the gains and minimize the losses. One can start by looking at the four directions of Hong Kong: east, south, west and north. In the northern part of Hong Kong, there has been talk about developing a border zone, but nothing much has been done, nor has the possibility of land reclamation been discussed.

The western part of Hong Kong has a greater chance, especially along the Pearl River Delta and the new bridge linking Hong Kong with Macao and Zhuhai. This will provide new opportunities in the western part of Guangdong. One need not destroy the coastlines, but build a man-made island outside the coast of western Tuen Mun along Urmston Road. We could also make use of Sha Chau and Lung Kwu Chau islands. A bridge or tunnel can be built to link to Tuen Mun or even the airport. The geographical location of such a man-made island will be perfect for use as a container port, as it is right outside the Pearl River. There, cargo can be delivered without passing the interior of Hong Kong. More land space will be made available for a future container port. Along with this suggestion, we could relocate the existing container ports in Tsing Yi and Stonecutters Island to the man-made island west of Tuen Mun. One can imagine the amount of land available for residential, commercial and industrial usage from the existing container port area.

What Hong Kong has most in terms of natural resources is the sea. Economic development should make a good use of the sea. In the southern part of Hong Kong, one suggestion is to make use of the few islands between the east of Lantau Island and west of Hong Kong Island. These are the three smaller islands of Peng Chau, Sunshine Island, and Hei Ling Chau, and two bigger islands of Cheung Chau and Lamma Island. Land can be reclaimed from the three smaller islands to make space.

Another viable possibility is Tolo Harbour, east of Taipo. Other than the Plover Cove Reservoir, which has to be preserved, there are four islands of Yeung Chau, Yim Tin Tsai, Ma Shi Chau and Centre Island. This area of sea is quite stable as it is limited by the Tolo Channel. One can think of the city of Amsterdam where residential buildings are separated by rivers, or Venice where river transport is needed. A "Hong Kong-Amsterdam" can be developed using these four islands for residential purposes, where buildings are separated by rivers.

In a nutshell, Hong Kong has many possibilities. Land reclamation enriches land resources. These in turn could boost growth potential and employment opportunities. Although different sectors in Hong Kong are seeking different goals, economic growth should be apolitical. It is the only way to enlarge Hong Kong's future capacity. For the sake of Hong Kong's future, let's give economic growth a chance.

The author is associate professor of the Department of Economics and Finance at City University of Hong Kong.
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Old April 9th, 2014, 11:17 AM   #847
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Mystery deepens over giant Hong Kong ferris wheel overlooking harbour
6 April 2014
South China Morning Post

A plan for a giant sightseeing ferris wheel to be built overlooking Hong Kong's harbour is shrouded in secrecy, even though a patch of land has been allocated on which to construct it.

In May last year the Lands Department awarded a three-year contract to Swiss AEX, allowing it to operate an observation wheel in front of Central Pier berths nine and 10 for a monthly rent of HK$850,000.

But almost a year on, there is no sign of any structure being erected on the site and details of the plan are being kept secret.

Recently banners went up around the earmarked site behind Central Ferry Piers 9 and 10, reading 'Hong Kong Observation Wheel', which include the sponsor's name Swiss AEX.

Swiss AEX, which is recorded in the Hong Kong company registry, opened an observation wheel in Bangkok last year. It beat four competitors to win the Hong Kong tender.

A request for information by the South China Morning Post was referred from the company's Hong Kong marketing agent to an email address.

A spokesman, identified only as C. Hansol, responded: "Since Swiss AEX has won the tender there are a lot of inquirers about this project … we normally don't provide any information during the development or construction of a project."

The spokesman said the group's CEO was willing to give the Post an exclusive interview "under the condition that the article will be subject to our review and final approval before publication".

The Post rejected the company's offer.

A Lands Department spokesman said details of the project would have to come from Swiss AEX. The only information he provided was that the wheel's diameter should be "no less than 50 metres".

Even members of the Harbourfront Commission, which oversees the development of the waterfront, have not been informed of details on the project.

Commission member Paul Zimmerman said it was "very odd" that members had not been involved in the tender process and had no say in the wheel's technical specifications.

He added that members had raised concerns that there were many attractions in Hong Kong where tourists can view the city from height.

"It's very different from Singapore. It's not really a thing for Hong Kong," he said. "But it would be fun. We didn't want to stop the project."

Michael Wu Siu-ieng, chairman of the Hong Kong Travel Industry Council, said a wheel was sure to be an attraction for tourists, but would be greatly affected by the weather.

He suggested that marketing initiatives for the project should start at least six months before it was launched.

Regardless of when the observation wheel may open, it may face a question of profitability.

While the London Eye is a success story welcoming an average of 3.5 million visitors a year, the Singapore Flyer, which opened in 2008 as the world's tallest wheel, went into receivership last year.

And the company which came up with the idea of building a wheel in Hong Kong back in 2011 did not survive.

Great City Attractions Global from Britain put in a joint proposal with the Hall Organisation to the Hong Kong government about building a transportable, 60-metre high, 42-cabin Ferris wheel facing Victoria Harbour.

Great City Attractions Global went into administration in 2012.

The two companies operated 25 wheels in nine countries, from 40 metres to 165 metres.

In 2011, Dubai-based Freij Entertainment International - backed by Balram Chainrai, the former owner of Portsmouth Football Club - joined the race to build the wheel.

Looking beyond Hong Kong, wheels around the world are competing to be the tallest.

High Roller in Las Vegas opened recently at a height of 167.6 metres, two metres higher than Singapore's.

The New York Wheel, due to open in 2016, is targeting a height of 190 metres, but the planned Dubai Eye, which could open next year, is likely to be 20 metres higher.
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Old April 9th, 2014, 12:05 PM   #848
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https://www.flickr.com/photos/citronate/13690944693
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Old April 9th, 2014, 12:14 PM   #849
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Thanks. The proposed ferries wheel would appear right in front of this view from IFC.
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Old June 5th, 2014, 06:02 PM   #850
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Hong Kong Ferris wheel to open in September at HK$100 per trip
17 May 2014
South China Morning Post

People willing to part with HK$100 will be able to view Victoria Harbour from 60 metres in the air from this autumn.

Operators of the Ferris wheel billed as Hong Kong's answer to the London Eye say they plan a soft opening in September to "build awareness", with an official launch later.

If it goes ahead, the opening will come more than a year into a three-year tenancy granted to Swiss AEX to operate the wheel at the Central ferry piers.

Although the site has been vacant for a year, the company has told the Harbourfront Commission it is "finalising the appointment of an internationally renowned contractor to be responsible for the preparatory footings and construction work".

It said the wheel would have 42 gondolas, each holding eight to 10 passengers, and it expected a million passengers a year - a rate of 2,740 a day.

"A soft launch of the project will take place in September to build awareness and anticipation. A higher-profile 'launch' will, thereafter, be carried out in cooperation with the Harbourfront Commission, Hong Kong Tourism Board, district representatives and the Hong Kong government," it said in a paper sent to the commission. The price will be HK$100 for adults and HK$70 for children.

The company said investigation work started last June and teams for project and construction management and landscape design had been appointed.

"Swiss AEX briefed [Central and] Western District Council last week and will meet with the Harbourfront Commission on Monday," director Leon Snep said. "We prefer to brief them first out of respect and gratitude towards the HK government for winning the tender.

"Once we've done so, we're happy to answer any questions the public and the South China Morning Post may have."

Travel Industry Council chairman Michael Wu Siu-ieng said HK$100 sounded a reasonable price. He said: "It would be an attractive ride, given that one can see Victoria Harbour with no obstruction. It would be best to go around sunset."

To meet the target number of one million visitors a year, a fully occupied wheel would have to rotate more than six times a day.

Wu said it was hard to say whether the number could be met until more information was available about the gondolas, such as whether they would be air conditioned.

Harbourfront Commission member Paul Zimmerman said the schedule was tight if the wheel was to be open in September. "I'm very surprised that the site is still vacant," he said.
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Old June 14th, 2014, 07:10 AM   #851
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By raykeung from dcfever :

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Old June 16th, 2014, 03:53 PM   #852
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Proposal for harbourfront body to manage PLA dock
16 June 2014
South China Morning Post

Watchdog suggests new authority could take charge of Central site when it opens to the public

The berth area of the People’s Liberation Army in Central could be managed by a future harbourfront authority when it is not in use, the waterfront watchdog says.

The suggestion, made by Harbourfront Commission chairman Nicholas Brooke (pictured), provides a possible answer on the future of the 150-metre section of waterfront in the heart of the business district.

Town planners approved rezoning the pier area from open space to military use in February, intensifying concerns that it would become inaccessible – despite the government’s pledge to open the area for public enjoyment when the PLA was not using it.

It is also unclear who will manage and police the area when the dock is open for public use.

“There has to be a workable arrangement because a lot of time it wouldn’t be in military use,” Brooke told the South China Morning Post.

He said a future harbourfront authority – for which a law is expected to be drafted by next year – could have a role in ensuring accessibility of the pier.

“When it is not in military use, the community should have access to it,” he said. “For those periods, the authority could be liable for the security and the maintenance.”

Having said that, he said the commission had yet to discuss with the government the possible legal issues involved.

The PLA berth is covered by a 1994 Sino-British defence agreement, which states that 150 metres of the eventual permanent waterfront should be left free for a military facility after reclamation work between Central and Wan Chai is completed.

But confusion has arisen over whether this means the land must be handed to the military.

In May, pressure group Designing Hong Kong sought a judicial review against the Town Planning Board’s decision to rezone the pier area.

The High Court granted a stay of the board’s decision, so it could not be endorsed by the Executive Council until the legal row ended.

The South China Morning Post has reported that the Security Bureau is studying the need to amend the Public Order Ordinance, which now requires a person wishing to enter any PLAoccupied place to obtain a permit from the garrison’s commander.

The bureau declined to comment on the possible amendment, but said it would take appropriate steps to move the matter forward in due course.

Brooke said a future authority would take better care of the waterfront. “This is a potential escape valve for the community. The quality of life has become a high priority of people and part of it is enjoying the waterfront.”
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Old June 16th, 2014, 11:04 PM   #853
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What is the expected date of completion of the entire project?
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Old June 17th, 2014, 04:11 PM   #854
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post
What is the expected date of completion of the entire project?
The final piece is the highway connection running underneath, which will finish in 2017.

http://www.devb.gov.hk/reclamation/e...ect/index.html
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Old June 19th, 2014, 08:59 PM   #855
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
The final piece is the highway connection running underneath, which will finish in 2017.

http://www.devb.gov.hk/reclamation/e...ect/index.html
Is it true that the completed project will include an elevated walkway along the promenade connecting Causeway Bay to Central and linking with the existing elevated walkway system in the hinterland? AKA forming a fully integrated system all the way to the ferry terminal in the west.
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Old June 21st, 2014, 12:47 PM   #856
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
The final piece is the highway connection running underneath, which will finish in 2017.

http://www.devb.gov.hk/reclamation/e...ect/index.html
HKSkyline (as you seem to be the most informed =) ), do you know if there is a website (or image) for the Central Reclamation project that is up to date? There don't seem to be any pictures online of what the park looks like now. I haven't been back to HK since October 2013 and was wondering if the park is taking shape. Not sure if there is an aerial somewhere =)
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Old June 21st, 2014, 01:33 PM   #857
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post
Is it true that the completed project will include an elevated walkway along the promenade connecting Causeway Bay to Central and linking with the existing elevated walkway system in the hinterland? AKA forming a fully integrated system all the way to the ferry terminal in the west.
Elevated walkway along the harbour? No. Should be a waterfront park stretching to Wan Chai at least.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pookgai View Post
HKSkyline (as you seem to be the most informed =) ), do you know if there is a website (or image) for the Central Reclamation project that is up to date? There don't seem to be any pictures online of what the park looks like now. I haven't been back to HK since October 2013 and was wondering if the park is taking shape. Not sure if there is an aerial somewhere =)
Construction photos are not up-to-date but I see some parts of the site are recently-updated : http://www.criii-cedd.com/background/history.htm

There is some light vegetation on the site now but not really a true park with big trees and such yet.
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Old June 22nd, 2014, 12:30 AM   #858
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This foto was done by me in 29 april 2014

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Old June 22nd, 2014, 08:09 AM   #859
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More an elevated deck than a walkway with the other elevated walkways connecting to it. I saw the master plan a while ago.

Anyway if such a thing goes ahead evidence of it would appear sooner or later.
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Old June 22nd, 2014, 08:56 AM   #860
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Quote:
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More an elevated deck than a walkway with the other elevated walkways connecting to it. I saw the master plan a while ago.

Anyway if such a thing goes ahead evidence of it would appear sooner or later.
What master plan is that?

The whole point of the waterfront is for people to enjoy the harbour, rather than observe it from some elevated space above it.
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