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Old June 10th, 2009, 05:25 PM   #1
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HONG KONG | Nga Tsin Wai Village Redevelopment | 120m x 2 | Pro

Compensation for heritage village
Hong Kong Standard
Friday, January 04, 2008





The Urban Renewal Authority yesterday issued an acquisition order to owners affected by the redevelopment plan for the 600-year old Nga Tsin Wai Village in Wong Tai Sin.

The HK$1.24 billion-project was announced last October with plans to transform the dilapidated village into a conservation park.

The authority's special compensation package is based on the resumption of the urban area village policy. Based on the value of the land, the 31 affected owners will be given notional ex-gratia compensation. Indigenous owners will also be given a removal allowance.

To sweeten the offer, the authority will add 10 percent of the compensation as a bonus if owners accept the offer within 60 days.

Owner-occupiers of domestic properties who wish to move back will be given priority to purchase units after the completion of the redevelopment.

Shop owners and tenants will also be compensated, based on the market value, plus an ex-gratia allowance.

While many villagers have said they wished to leave behind their deteriorating houses with leaky roofs, some were concerned the compensation they would receive may not lead to a better life.

Villager Ng Hou-chuen questioned whether the notional ex-gratia compensation was fair, considering the high- rises that will be built on the land. He said the villagers will meet soon to discuss the acquisition.

The sole Chinese doctor in the village, 62-year-old Lam Tak-sun, feared he may lose both his clinic and his home of 20 years.

"The rent outside the village is so expensive, the compensation may not be enough to rent another place," Lam said.

Nga Tsin Wai, the last surviving walled village in the urban area, was founded by the Ng, Chan and Lee clans in 1352.

The redevelopment project has been dragging on for 20 years.

Cheung Kong (Holdings) has owned about 70 percent of the 57 village houses since the 1980s.

The historically rich village will become a conservation park, with two 120-meter residential towers, one on each side of a 40-meter wide park.

The Tin Hau Temple, the arched gatehouse and the "Hing Yau Yu" stone tablet, the village's three relics, will be kept along with seven stone houses and a paved lane.

Lawmaker Chan Yuen-han said while she was glad to see villagers given the opportunity to get out of their shackled living environment, she was disappointed the government lacked vision in preserving the heritage village in its entirety.

"The development will damage any relics buried underground," Chan said. "This village has witnessed the city's history for several hundred years, and it would be sad to see it go."

Earlier, green groups raised concerns that the building height may result in a wall-effect, blocking ventilation in the district.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 07:29 PM   #2
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Old July 7th, 2009, 10:52 AM   #3
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Villager turned out of home hoursafter signing compensation deal
19 May 2009
South China Morning Post

A tenant has complained that he was forced out of his village house, zoned for redevelopment, by property developer Cheung Kong (Holdings) just hours after signing a compensation agreement with the Urban Renewal Authority.

Ko Cheuk-ming, who has lived in Nga Tsin Wai village, Kowloon City, for 40 years, signed the agreement after more than a year of negotiations and is still awaiting payment.

Shortly after he signed the agreement, court bailiffs arrived at his house and told him to pack up and move out the same day.

The court had twice sent him letters to inform him of the possession order granted in favour of the landlord, Cheung Kong.

After hours of negotiation between court bailiffs, Mr Ko and his fellow villagers, the authority made arrangements for Mr Ko and his family to stay in a flat in Tai Kok Tsui until he receives the compensation payment on Wednesday next week. Mr Ko has already been given an advance payment of HK$50,000.

The site is set for redevelopment by the Urban Renewal Authority working in partnership with the developer. Under the joint venture the two parties will share the redevelopment costs, which include building four residential towers. A few houses of the 600-year-old village - the city's last urban walled village - will be preserved in a conservation park.

Mr Ko said he was not ready to leave the house with his wife and two children just hours after he signed the compensation agreement.

"Why can't the Urban Renewal Authority co-ordinate better with the developer? Why can't the developer wait until I get the money next week?" Mr Ko asked. He said he had agreed on the amount of compensation on Saturday and thought the authority would, as before, ask the developer to defer the possession order until payment was made.

An authority spokesman said the developer had twice been asked to defer the possession order while negotiations were continuing but could no longer do so yesterday as the tenant had accepted the compensation.

Cheung Kong (Holdings) could not be reached for comment yesterday.
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Old July 19th, 2009, 08:38 AM   #4
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Plan to cement Kai Tak nullah abandoned
16 February 2008
South China Morning Post

The notorious Kai Tak nullah - once one of the city's most putrid waterways - is to get a new life as a landscaped stream along its full length.

The government has abandoned plans to cement over part of the nullah in Wong Tai Sin and the Drainage Services Department is working on a plan to be released for consultation next month.

The change of heart follows the submission of a proposal by legislator Chan Yuen-han, who urged that the 1,200-metre stream be modelled on the revitalised Cheonggyecheon Stream in the heart of Seoul.

Water quality in the nullah - which often produced an acrid stench over surrounding neighbourhoods and the former Kai Tak airport - is said to have improved, but conservationists say it will have to be raised further if the proposal is to go ahead.

The nullah, stretching from Hoi Hung Road to Prince Edward Road East and entering Victoria Harbour beside the former airport runway, is divided into upper and lower courses. The 500-metre upper course, from Wong Tai Sin police station to Tai Shing Street, was to have been covered.

Ms Chan said yesterday she hoped the government, now that it had given up the idea of "killing" the watercourse, would follow the example of the Seoul stream, which was said to have cut average temperatures in the city centre by 3.6 degrees Celsius.

"If you walk along the nullah before sunset, you will find egrets stopping by and fish swimming in it," said Ms Chan, who prepared the alternative proposal along with Chinese University and the Conservancy Association.

Association campaign manager Peter Li Siu-man said the nullah had a long history. "It has existed for at least 800 years. It was a meandering stream named the Lung Chung River, but it was straightened and formed into a nullah by the Japanese during the Sino-Japanese war to prevent flooding."

The waterway, once polluted by effluent from now-closed factories along its route, is fed mostly by the water treatment plant in Sha Tin.

But Mr Li said waste water and illegal discharges from restaurants also flowed into the nullah.

Under the proposal, the nullah would be integrated with surrounding parks and former industrial areas to become a space for public art. Rows of trees would be planted.

The designer of the proposal, Wallace Chang Ping Hung of Chinese University's department of architecture, urged the government to keep the water catchment area in the former Tai Hom village so a water garden could be set up to link to the river.

The proposal also calls for a cycling path along the lower course and retention of Nga Tsin Wai village - the last urban walled village, most of which is slated for demolition.

Surrounded by a green belt, it would serve to link the old district and the new Kai Tak development.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 10:01 PM   #5
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Sour note for URA chief in swan song
28 November 2007
The Standard

There were more brickbats than bouquets during outgoing Urban Renewal Authority chief Billy Lam Chung-lun's swan song before lawmakers yesterday to discuss the authority's land acquisition policy.

Lam, who retires as the authority's managing director next month, came under fire as legislators accused him of denying small property owners their say in redevelopment projects.

At a meeting of the Legislative Council's development panel, members directed their anger at Lam and questioned the authority's power to reject the voices of small property owners.

``Why would the authority only work with big developers which own majority property rights?'' the Liberal Party's Miriam Lau Kin-yee asked.

She was referring to the redevelopment project at the 600-year-old Nga Tsin Wai village in Wong Tai Sin, announced in October, in which 70 percent of the property was acquired by Li Ka-shing's Cheung Kong (Holdings).

Redevelopment proposals by affected property owners in other projects have often met with a less than enthusiastic response from the URA.

The controversial redevelopment of Mong Kok's Sai Yee Street, or ``Sneakers Street,'' into a shopping mall sparked an outcry from shopowners there. Their alternative plan to keep their businesses along the street was turned down by the authority last month.

``Why is it that big developers can take part in redevelopment and small property owners can't? How on earth can this be fair?'' said panel deputy chairman and architect Lau Sau-shing.

A visibly upset Albert Chan Wai-yip of the League of Social Democrats sarcastically congratulated Lam on his departure, accusing him of ``bureaucratizing the authority and suffocating redevelopment'' in Hong Kong during his six years in office.

``The `Sneakers Street' redevelopment was one of 25 projects announced in 1998 by the then Lands Development Corporation,'' Chan said. ``These projects were announced two decades ago. Now many development projects, such as that at [Light Rail Transit] Yuen Long Station, are directed by the chief executive. Shouldn't good proposals be examined again?''

Lam, however, was commended by the Democratic Party's James To Kun-sun, who praised him for his efforts in pushing for building repairs and speedy redevelopment.

Lam said he was aware of the divergence of views between property owners living in dilapidated conditions and who prefer a cash buyout in redevelopment projects, and shopowners who prefer to stay.

He said the URA will consider joint redevelopment with affected owners only on an ad hoc basis as long as it benefits all parties concerned.

``We're all in the same ship here although we hold different positions. You're sitting at the bow of the ship going forward, while I'm pedaling at the stern. Society will reach its own conclusion,'' he said.

Secretary for Development Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, who also attended the panel meeting, pledged to review the urban renewal policy next year.
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Old July 26th, 2009, 06:26 PM   #6
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Legislative Council Question 9 : "Nga Tsin Wai Village redevelopment project" by the Hon Chan Yuen-han and a written reply by the Secretary for Housing, Planning and Lands, Mr Michael Suen, in the Legislative Council
Wednesday, June 7, 2006
http://www.devb-plb.gov.hk/eng/press...0606070155.htm

Following is a question by the Hon Chan Yuen-han and a written reply by the Secretary for Housing, Planning and Lands, Mr Michael Suen, in the Legislative Council today (June 7):

Question:

It has been reported that when meeting the residents of Nga Tsin Wai Village (NTW Village) in February this year, the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) undertook to announce the commencement of the redevelopment project of the NTW Village within three months, but no announcement in respect of the project has been made so far. It has also been reported that as URA has to discuss with the developers the collaboration of the project, its commencement has to be delayed for a year. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether it knows:

(a) when URA will announce the commencement of the redevelopment project of the NTW Village; and

(b) whether URA will consult the villagers involved before deciding whether or not the project should be delayed, and provide them with rehousing and compensation first as originally planned?

Reply:

Madam President,

The Urban Renewal Authority (URA) is an independent statutory body established under the Urban Renewal Authority Ordinance. It is tasked with the mission to implement urban renewal. The Board of the URA is responsible for formulating and overseeing the policy and operation of the URA, including the timing for commencement of individual urban renewal projects, the implementation mode and the compensation policy.

Regarding the two parts of the question, the information provided by the URA is as follows:

(a) The Nga Tsin Wai Village project is one of the 25 urban renewal projects announced by the former Land Development Corporation. The URA has all along accorded priority to the handling of this project. At the end of last year, the Wong Tai Sin District Council, having considered the aspirations of the villagers of the Nga Tsin Wai Village, supported a comprehensive redevelopment of the Village with the preservation of the gate house, the embedded stone plaque and the Tin Hau Temple within the Village. The URA is now in close dialogue with the residents in order to assist them in addressing their issues of concern. At the same time, the URA is in discussion with the property owner who owns the majority of property interests within the project, with a view to exploring feasible options to implement the project. The URA will announce the details of the project upon the completion of the preparation work.

(b) The URA is now actively undertaking preparation work for the Nga Tsin Wai Village project. The URA will continue to maintain close dialogue with the Wong Tai Sin District Council and the residents, and explain its current compensation and re-housing policy to the residents concerned. Following previous practice, the URA will, upon commencement of a redevelopment project, provide appropriate compensation, re-housing and the necessary assistance to the affected residents.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 08:05 PM   #7
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Source : http://www.pbase.com/hmlai88/ngatsinwai

















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Old July 30th, 2009, 09:09 PM   #8
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Didn't realize SCMP produced this ...

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Old August 9th, 2009, 07:21 PM   #9
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衙前圍村突「加速」收樓
19 May 2009
星島日報

市建局衙前圍村項目收購進度接近尾聲,持有項目絕大部分業權的發展商,希望能透過旗下地產公司加快「清場」,昨日派執達吏向其中一個租戶收樓;由於事出突然,租戶一度感到徬徨,直至市建局「出馬」,為該租戶一家提供臨時單位暫住,事件暫時解決。

高先生一家四口,過去四十年一直租住於衙前圍村鄉公所旁一間石屋,搬遷補償問題一直與市建局談不攏,直至最近才與市建局達成協議,準備月內遷出。之前多次發出「最後通牒」的業權人,昨突派執達吏收樓,要求高先生即日遷出,令他們一家徬徨萬分。

市建局安排臨時單位

執達吏原替高先生寫了推廌信,希望他們可入住房委會的臨時單位,但由於要通過入息審查,加上只能安排屯門的單位,未能即日成事。執達吏堅持即日收樓,市建局其後親自「出馬」,安排高先生暫時入住位於大角嘴一個臨時單位,讓他們有足夠時間搬遷。局方昨午亦已派員將搬遷補償的首期支票交給高先生。高先生坦言,對有關安排仍未感滿意,因大角嘴與他原本居所距離甚遠,令兩名子女須早於六時起牀上學。

市建局發言人稱,基於保密原則,不便透露與個別租客所訂定的搬遷補償,類似尚未遷出的租戶個案有數宗。

發言人又說,暫時不便透露衙前圍村項目的具體收購數字,只稱當中較為棘手的,是業權人未清楚的個案,局方早前已透過在本地及海外報章刊登廣告,希望能夠成功聯絡業權人。

衙前圍村於六百年前建村,由姓吳、姓陳和姓李三個宗族組成,一九九九年土發公司與發展商合作重建,直至近年才完成重建規劃,日後將建有商業、住宅和公園項目,圍村的部分特色建築亦會保留。記者 歐志軍
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Old November 30th, 2009, 06:37 PM   #10
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Traditional Cultural Festival @ Nga Tsin Wai

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Old October 2nd, 2010, 03:19 PM   #11
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By Kai_Fong from dchome :

















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Old July 17th, 2011, 08:15 PM   #12
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Land resumption for urban renewal project at Nga Tsin Wai Village gazetted
Friday, July 15, 2011
Government Press Release

The Lands Department today (July 15) announced the resumption of land for the implementation of an urban redevelopment project at Nga Tsin Wai Village in Wong Tai Sin.

The project is included in the Urban Renewal Authority (URA)'s Business Plan for 2007-08. Its implementation will help improve the general environment of the locality while preserving the three main historic relics of the village, namely the Gatehouse, the stone tablet "Hing Yau Yu" at the Gatehouse and the Tin Hau Temple. The central axis and the lane pattern of Nga Tsin Wai Village will also be preserved.

A total of 20 private interests at the site will be resumed under the Lands Resumption Ordinance. The affected interests will revert to the Government three months from the date of the resumption notice being affixed on site. Details of the private land affected were gazetted today.

Under the compensation policy for implementation of urban redevelopment projects, eligible owners of domestic properties will be offered the statutory compensation and an ex-gratia home purchase allowance or supplementary allowance as appropriate. Since this project involves the resumption of an urban village with indigenous villagers, "Compensation Package for Urban Village" is also applicable. Under the arrangement, eligible owners of building land of old scheduled lots in New Kowloon will be offered ex-gratia compensation and an additional allowance will also be offered to eligible indigenous owners of old scheduled building lots and owners who have inherited their lots through the male line from pre-December 25, 1941, owners. The higher of the two compensation packages will be offered to legal owners of the domestic properties.

Eligible domestic occupiers will be offered rehousing in Hong Kong Housing Authority or Hong Kong Housing Society units, or an ex-gratia cash allowance.

Eligible commercial property occupiers, including owners and tenants, may choose an ex-gratia allowance in lieu of the right to make statutory claims for business and related losses.

Affected owners and tenants of both domestic and commercial properties will also have the right to make statutory claims under the Lands Resumption Ordinance. If the claims are not settled by agreement, the owners and tenants may apply to the Lands Tribunal for adjudication. Professional fees reasonably incurred for making such claims may be reimbursed by the Government.

Upon resumption and clearance, the site, with an area of about 6,000 square metres, will be redeveloped for residential use with ancillary facilities. A conservation park featuring the abovementioned historic relics will be provided in accordance with the prevailing statutory plan prepared under the Town Planning Ordinance.
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Old July 1st, 2014, 09:08 AM   #13
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Villagers to fight against eviction
21 October 2013
The Standard

A group of Nga Tsin Wai Tsuen residents have vowed to fight against their eviction to make way for the redevelopment of the 600-year-old village in Wong Tai Sin.

The desperate residents hosted a ceremony against the Urban Renewal Authority for violently forcing them to move out of the village.

A villager, surnamed Fan, said the court ordered him to move out by Thursday, but the URA failed to respond to residents' demands to build another stone house in that location to resettle them.

He said residents did not rule out setting camp outside the authority's headquarters.

A concern group urged the URA to discuss with the residents and implement the proposed settlement.

They were told that Thursday will be the ultimate deadline to move out.

Currently, three structures in the village are classified as Grade Three historical buildings. Nga Tsin Wai Tsuen is the last Wai Tsuen in urban Hong Kong.

According to the Legislative Council, the redevelopment of Nga Tsin Wai Tsuen was one of the 25 urban renewal projects announced in 1998. The project began in October 2007.

The government will have to handle the settlement for 22 occupants, including 13 residential, seven non-residential and two commercial occupants.
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Old January 30th, 2016, 06:45 AM   #15
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The Standard Excerpt
Last two walled village holdouts call it quits
Jan. 26, 2015









The curtain has come down on the last urban walled village in Kowloon.

The remaining two business operators in Nga Tsin Wai Tsuen agreed yesterday to move out, leaving the way clear for the Urban Renewal Authority to build residential flats that are expected to be completed within three years.

Most of the villagers of the 600-year-old walled village have already left, but the two stalwarts stayed until terms were agreed to by yesterday's midnight deadline.

Kwok Yue-ka, owner of a salon, said he accepted the settlement proposal offered to all villagers by the URA.

The other businessman, Lee, balked at the proposal but agreed to a compensation offer, though he would not give details.

Under the proposal, store operators can be back in business once the redevelopment is completed for HK$600 a month for the first three years, HK$3,000 for the fourth year and HK$6,000 for the fifth.

Future rents would be dictated by market rates.
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Old May 12th, 2016, 08:19 AM   #16
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8 May 2016
South China Morning Post Excerpt
Discovery of 300-year-old relics at Hong Kong’s last urban walled village could halt redevelopment
Calls for a conservation project to reconstruct a dramatic episode in China’s history



The future of a controversial urban redevelopment hangs in the air after 300-year-old relics were unearthed at Hong Kong’s last urban walled village.

They include the foundations of four watch towers built for the 662-year-old Nga Tsin Wai village in Wong Tai Sin to fight off pirates and bandits from a major civil war in mainland China.

The discovery was made during an archaeological impact assessment carried out by the Urban Renewal Authority, the Antiquities and Monuments Office confirmed with the Post.

A historian and conservationists urged the URA to halt the joint-venture project with developer Cheung Kong Property Holdings.

The office, which has sent experts to monitor the assessment work, added that more building foundations and daily utensils could be found underground at a later stage.

“These walls and towers were a reaction to the depredations of the bandit Lam Fung [an influential pirate on the coast of Guangdong],” said Dr Patrick Hase, a a village historian and former senior civil servant.

“Bandits, walled villages, and all that they imply, are a vital part of our history. They are even more a vital part of the history of Kowloon, which is otherwise almost entirely destroyed. They should be preserved in situ as they are,” Hase said. “The whole village should have been preserved.”

According to his research paper, Beside the Yamen: Nga Tsin Wai Village, the towers at the village’s four corners, built in 1573 and rebuilt in the late 16th century, stood over seven metres high and were two-storeyed, protruding into a moat on both sides. Residential towers will be built on the corners under the authority’s plan.

Elders interviewed by Hase said each tower had a gun mounted on a swivel, known as a jingal, that were all sunk in the moats when Japanese troops invaded in 1941.

The villages used the guns in 1854 to fight off rebels when the Taiping Rebellion spread from mainland China.
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