We conducted a public opinion survey between September 28th to October 6th regarding the captioned application. 143 people submitted their responses.
The majority of the respondents objected expressing concerns over the relaxation of building height restrictions, deteriorating air ventilation, urban heat island effect, daylight access and visual intrusion.
By Friday Oct 9, please submit your comments to Town Planning Board at https://www.info.gov.hk/tpb/tc/plan_application/A_K20_133.html
擬議辦公室、商業及零售發展並放寬建築物高度限制 (申請編號: A/K20/133)
- 62.94% of the respondents objected to the reflective exterior glass surface as it creates a glare which impairs the enjoyment of neighboring residents including particularly The Waterfront and The Austin. The glare may also impact nearby traffic. Solar reflections also raise temperatures and may impact vegetation nearby. Concerns were expressed over energy consumption for air-conditioning. The design is deemed does not match with the surrounding buildings.
- 71.33% of respondents are concerned over traffic impacts along Nga Cheung Road, Jordan Road and Canton Road. The proposed scheme proposed no less than 550 parking spaces for private cars. With the increase in parking spaces here and the car park at To Wah Road together with other developments in the area as well as new road connections such as the Central Kowloon Route, it is unclear whether the traffic burden exceeds capacity. Traffic congestion (and associated blaring of car horns) is experienced often in the area including along Jordan Road.
- 70.63% of respondents are concerned over the relaxation of building heights and the close distance between The Waterfront and XRL topside development. Such building structure would disturb daylight access, visual quality and air ventilation to inner area in Jordan.
- 76.22% of people object to relaxing height limit as this will set a bad precedent for nearby sites including future buildings at the WKCD. This application will set a precedent for others to change height restrictions. Respondents wonder if there is any justification of relaxing height limit after developers won bids for a site. Moreover, there is no compensation for the losses suffered by nearby residents. The gain would be simply for the developer at the cost of the neighbours.
- Although it is claimed that the proposed design has better air ventilation than the original scheme, 71.33% of respondents are concerned over the impact of having less fresh air and that pollutants residue in the community. It must be noted that the developer has failed to meet and consult the neighbours on the proposed plans.
- 49.65% of the respondents are worried over food and beverage related noise control at site, and the absence of clear operating guidelines on the use of facilities and time control of activities at the catering and commercial facilities (64.34%).
- 81.82% of the respondents are concerning over delivery of the promised public space. The promised public spaces are absent from the land lease conditions and may not be delivered. As seen throughout Hong Kong, what is promised in terms of public gains including public space, accessibility, public recreation, alfresco dining, etc, fails to be delivered. What controls will be applied by the Town Planning Board to ensure promised made are delivered?
- 86.71% of the respondents are upset with the lack of consultation and the failure to present and discuss the plans with nearby residents. Residents received insufficient information regarding the revised plans. Public consultation should have been conducted to provide clear information and to gain a better understanding. Moreover, the developer should introduce and discuss the proposal with the District Council before the deadline for comments under the Town Planning Ordinance for the captioned application.
- In the survey conducted, there is a demand for assessment of sustainability performance in terms of creating a ‘public realm’ which delivers a holistic and positive impact for occupants and neighbours. Reference is made to HKGBC BEAM Plus Neighborhood. More than 70% of respondents suggest civic spaces to be used by non-profit organizations for community activities (76.92%), promoting gender equality by introducing ‘Gender Mainstreaming checklist’ into the design and construction of the development (70.63%), and by adopting pet-friendly (78.32%) and bicycle-friendly measures (77.62%) for the site as well as the connections with the West Kowloon Cultural District to Jordan, Yau Ma Tei and Tai Kwok Tsui.
- 93.01% of respondents support environmental protection initiatives, such as energy saving, water use and reuse, using recyclable building materials, installing waste management and treatment facilities, etc. To implement initiatives to improve energy efficiency, environmental performance and achieving Government’s energy saving plan by 2025, all new development should have set goal to achieve HKGBC Beam Plus.
Designing Hong Kong and a few Yau Tsim Mong District Council members would like to collect your views on the topside development on XRL.
Sun Hung Kai Properties submitted a re-application of building’s design and structure (Application No. A/K20/133) under section 12 (a) of the Town Planning Ordinance. If you have any concerns, please take this chance to comment to the Town Planning Board by Oct 9th. Your views may improve the final design of the development.
Click here for the submission to Town Planning Board (deadline on Oct 09)
Click here for Designing Hong Kong public consultation
Click here for Proposed Topside Development by Masterplan Limited
Click here for Paper of the proposed Topside Development
For enquiry, please contact us at [email protected]
新鴻基地產根據《城市規劃條例》第12（a）條提交了建築物的設計和結構的申請（申請編號A / K20 / 133）。請在10月9日之前向城市規劃委員會發表意見，或加入條件限制。你的意見可能會影響最終建築設計，從而改善社區發展。
Thank you those who participated in our online survey!
A public opinion survey was conducted from 18-20 September 2020. More than 70% of the 813 respondents objected to steel railings and preferred a simple concrete bridge. 103 local Shek O residents voted, with 70 objecting to steel railings. Overall, only 21.3% of the respondents supported steel railing designs (option #2 or #3). However, 138 people offered suggestions explaining that they preferred:
- A design which blends in better with the natural environment by using a granite stone finishing or softening the blue colour;
- Widen the bridge and approach paths, and add space for safe gathering, photo taking;
- Enable any water to run off quickly and ensure a non-slippery bridge deck;
- Soft solar lights/ LED lights to ignite during nights;
- Improved signage about the bridge could be considered.
- Enable people to put ‘lover locks’
- Heart shape openings in the structure
- Photo spots / observation areas (bridge is too narrow for photo taking)
- Seating, shade and washroom in the vicinity
- LED lighting to make it photogenic at night
- Dim solar lights along the bridge and path
- Railings to assist elderly to walk to and from the bridge
- Graffiti wall
- Signage with information about the history of ‘Shek O lovers’ bridge
- A coin operated telescope
Other proposed options:
4. 選擇柔和的太陽能燈/ LED燈在夜間點亮；
Earlier this year, we proposed the idea of the Hong Kong Island Coastal Trail. Then, we suggested 18 proposals for improvement along the trail and asked public to comment. Today, we announce the survey results so far.
Respondents in a recent survey identified two more projects to improve the “Hong Kong Island Coastal Trail.” A wider pavement is needed at Deep Water Bay where people are forced onto the road, and respondents asked for the promised public access through the Central Military Dock when there is no vessel in town.
Besides the additional projects, valuable comments were given. While everyone agrees on connecting the different promenades, pavements and trails into a route close to the shore, some raised concerns over safeguarding the natural environment (minimizing concrete) and making sure that the route is safe for all.
Now the hard work starts. We have to convince the different Government departments to undertake the work required.
Fore more detail 更詳細的結果:
We have surveyed a 65-kilometre hiking route as close as possible to the shores of Hong Kong Island. The plan for creating a “Hong Kong Island Coastal Trail” has been cooking for a while. Since 2002 we have advocated access along the waterfront of Victoria Harbour and works are proceeding. In 2010 we started to focus on linking Kennedy Town to Stanley, a route which was recently sign posted as the “Southern District Coastal Trail”. Last year we explored the links from Stanley to Chai Wan and onwards to Shau Kei Wan. During the survey we documented the sights and destinations, and identified improvements which can be made to bring the route closer to the shore.
Leave from the Hong Kong Observation Wheel in Central and walk along the busy ferry piers via Shun Tak Centre along the shore to the Instagram Pier, the western cargo working area in Kennedy Town. Walk up along Victoria Road and down onto Sandy Bay rocky beach. Explore the dead end waterfront promenade along the HKU sports pitches before backtracking to the road to arrive at Cyberport Waterfront Park. From there walk up Cyberport Road and over Waterfall Bay down along the 1,000 statues at Wah Fu’s waterfront. After industrial Tin Wan wonder through the Aberdeen fish market and follow the promenade along Aberdeen’s colourful harbour. Use the pedestrian footbridge over the Heung Yip Road nullah to connect to Wong Chuk Hang Station and Ocean Park. From there find Mills & Chung Path to the beaches of Deep Water Bay and Repulse Bay. Opposite South Bay Road number 18 walk up the trail over to Stanley. After Stanley find the Stanley East Catch Water by going up the stairs at the Stanley Mound Fresh Water Pumping Station to walk to Tai Tam. Go down along the bottom of the Tai Tam dam and up Hong Kong Trail Section 7 to the long set of stairs from To Tei Wan up to Shek O Road and the start of the Dragon’s Back trail. Here are three choices: Go up Dragon’s Back, take a bus to Shek O, or walk to Cape D’Aguilar Road and boulder down the rock stream onto Shek O beach. From Big Wave Bay there is a well-trodden route over Cape Collinson to Siu Sai Wan promenade. After the industrial waterfront of Chai Wan you reach Heng Fa Chuen’s tree lined waterfront. For now, walk up Shing Tai Road and find the informal trail along the south of the highway to get to Shau Kei Wan. From there the Quarry Bay Park and promenade take you to North Point. Make your way onwards to the Causeway Bay typhoon shelter and the Wanchai waterfront where waterfront works are in progress. From the Convention Centre you can get back to the ferris wheel to complete the 65km Hong Kong Island Coastal Trail.
To learn more about our survey, click here. Please let us know if you have any comments as well!
從中環犘天輪出發，經過中環碼頭和信德中心就到達西區公眾貨物裝卸區，亦即是聞名的「Instagram Pier」。向西面走，經過堅尼地城到達域多利道，再緩緩走下大口環的小石灘。跟著香港大學運動中心旁的海堤一直走，便要回到碼路並到達數碼港海濱長廊。經過數碼港道就會找到了瀑布灣，然過穿過華富海傍的千尊神像，再路過田灣的工廠，眼前就是香港仔漁市場和避風塘。沿著香葉路一直走到黃竹坑和海洋公園，從這裡可以找到苗鍾徑並一路沿岸邊走到深水灣咎淺水灣，穿過南灣道 18 號對面行山徑就可以到達赤柱。經過赤柱後，在赤柱崗抽水站的梯級拾級而上就到達赤柱東引水道，繼續走便會到達大潭。往下走到大潭堤壩的壩底，再接駁到港島徑第七段，就會到達土地灣。在土地灣可以選擇走上龍脊，乘巴士到石澳，或者走到鶴咀再沿石澗前往石澳泳灘。走到大浪灣，沿歌連臣角到小西灣海濱，經過柴灣工業區、杏花邨的樹蔭海濱，再經盛達路公路右旁的非官方路徑就能到達筲箕灣。筲箕灣海濱一直連接到鰂魚涌，並延伸到北角。繼續走到銅鑼灣避風塘，穿過灣仔和會展海濱，再走不久，就回到我們的起點 — 中環摩天輪。
Government has proposed to build a shopping mall and car parks underneath Kowloon Park to pay for tunnels which divert pedestrians away from overcrowded pavements along Haiphong Road.
We propose a simpler solution: Re-open pedestrian crossings at Peking Road, Middle Road, and Salisbury Road so that is easier for people to get from Canton Road to the MTR Station.
We have studied the three junctions in detail. The drawings below show how pedestrians can cross Kowloon Park Drive with little impact on traffic flow.
Do you support these new pedestrian crossings? Go to Facebook and give us a like.
Want to find out more, click here for the video link.
Some 3,000 people signed letters to save Kowloon Park. Click here to see our newsletter.
Proposed zebra crossing at the junction of Kowloon Park Drive and Peking Road 建議在北京道增設的斑馬線
Proposed zebra crossing at the junction of Kowloon Park Drive and Middle Road 建議在中間道增設的斑馬線
Proposed zebra crossing and new tunnel connections at the junction of Kowloon Park Drive and Salisbury Road 建議在梳士巴利道增設的斑馬線及新的隧道出入口
> Petition Link: http://supporthk.org/en/node/4412/ <
On 17 June 2017, a 38-year-old father slipped and fell down the at Waterfall Bay. At least three people had a fatal accident here since 2006. We asked government for a pedestrian footbridge in 2010 but progress has been slow.
We need a guarantee that government will provide a safe link for residents who walk between Wah Fu Estate and Cyberport and for those who would like to enjoy the spectacular views of the Waterfall.
Sign Now to urge the government to speed up a safe footbridge at Waterfall Bay!
AM730 column on the same: Link
News report of accident (Chinese): Link
Play in the Tak
Join and connect with friends – come and play along Tak 玩德節- the original name for “Des Voeux Road Central”.
The Tak festival starts 27th February and runs till end of March.
Sections of the street will be transformed into experimental playgrounds. You are invited to play Jenga on the street corner, join a sidewalk gaming tour, and discover hidden gems in alleys and lanes to start an interesting conversation with strangers. You can join workshops, exhibitions, talks and events.
The festival is presented by the Des Voeux Road Central Initiative. The aim is to raise awareness and support for improving the pedestrian environment along Des Voeux Road Central.
For more information:
The upcoming sale of a government building in Mong Kok is a valuable chance to improve walkability in the area, but officials are shirking their responsibility. An edited version of the article below appeared in the South China Morning Post on 2 January 2016.
Paul Zimmerman, Pok Fu Lam district councillor and CEO of Designing Hong Kong.
I like the Ombudsman’s recent public announcements that tai chi is healthy, but not in public administration. Tai chi, in local slang, means to shirk responsibility. The Ombudsman, Connie Lau Yin-hing, is already so busy clearing obvious cases of maladministration that I wonder whether she will have time for the well-practised, evasive language bureaucrats dish out when they reply to proposals and questions.
In our campaign to improve walkability, our latest encounter with tai chi is over the sale of the Trade and Industry Department (TID) Tower, formerly known as Argyle Centre Tower II, on Nathan Road in Mong Kok. It is a 1980s building owned by the government. The tender for its sale closes on January 8. We have asked for it to include terms which oblige the buyer to internalise the links to Mong Kok MTR station and the Mong Kok Road footbridge. These stairs and escalators currently obstruct pavements and roads surrounding the building. Mongkok MTR station exits B1, B2 and B3 occupy the south and east pavements. Staircases of the Mongkok Road footbridge built by Sun Hung Kei occupy the pavement and two lanes of Mong Kok Road north of the building.
Removing these structures from the adjacent pavements and roads would improve pedestrian and vehicular circulation at street level. Moreover, linking the footbridge with a new Argyle Street footbridge via the Argyle Centre Towers is a critical piece of the puzzle the government has been struggling with: the creation of a comprehensive elevated pedestrian network desperately needed to alleviate the overcrowding of Mong Kok’s streets.
The sale of the building is a one-off opportunity to improve walkability. If we fail to spell out these requirements in the tender, it will be hard to convince the buyer to give up gross floor area and to invest in the works later.
The Government Property Agency’s first move to shirk responsibility was outrageous. It said: “Having consulted the Transport Department, we note that it would cause inconvenience to the pedestrians. It would require pedestrians to pass through the internal area of the building before reaching the footbridge and Nathan Road. The route, which will not be open at all times, will be indirect and is not desirable from the perspectives of property management and cost-effectiveness.”
We pointed out that there are many buildings in Hong Kong where this happens all the time, including 100 Queen’s Road Central and the Central-Mid-Levels escalator.
The second tai chi move was claiming that our proposal for amending the tender would cause undue delay to the disposal of the building. The government decided to proceed as scheduled so that “the office space in the TID Tower can be released to the market in a timely manner in accordance with our announced plan to increase the supply of commercial space in prime locations to meet keen market demand”.
This is not the first time we have encountered a misplaced focus on expediency over walkability.
When it became clear in 2009 that the Tamar footbridge would stop 10cm short of Admiralty Centre, we wrote to the government and pointed out the importance of a direct link into the elevated system of Queensway Plaza, Pacific Place and the connected buildings. Officials replied that it would require too much time to negotiate with the owners of Admiralty Centre. So instead, we now all have to go down to street level and back up again to continue on our way.
The government’s third tai chi move talked of how they would “encourage the successful bidder to consider ways of enhancing the connection between the TID Tower and the existing footbridge system and adjoining commercial buildings to improve the surrounding environment”.
From the failures to link Kowloon Bay Station and MegaBox, the Sheraton Hotel and the Middle Road Tunnel, and the Nexxus Building and the Central footbridge, we know that encouragement means little in the Government’s dictionary.
Which department will be responsible for such “encouraging” once the building has been sold? Would this include links to the MTR? Who would pay for the removal of the structures on the pavements and road? Will a bonus plot ratio be offered to compensate for the public passages through the property? Will the land premium be waived for the links over and under government land? These questions go on.
All this would be so much easier to resolve before selling the building. Instead, we will have to wait and see whether this encouragement is real or simply a wimpy tai chi move, another one for the Ombudsman’s tray.
One-off opportunity to improve Mongkok
The Government has announced the sale of the vacant Trade and Industry Department Tower (TID Tower) in Mongkok to the private sector.
This provides an one-off opportunity to relocate the lifts and staircases connecting the Mongkok Road Footbridge System and the Mongkok MTR station into the TID Tower.
Exits B1, B2 and B3 of the Mongkok MTR station occupy adjacent pavements, and the adjacent section of Mongkok Road was reduced by two lanes for staircases and lifts to the footbridge.
Roads and pavements around the TID Tower are narrow. Relocating the staircases and lifts would allow widening of the footway, the carriageway, or both.
It is common in Hong Kong to ask property owners to create public access to footbridges and MTR stations. Architects and developers understand the design, engineering and management challenges of internalizing public lifts and staircases, and allowing pedestrians to pass through private buildings.
The obligation to incorporate the staircases and lifts would not be detrimental to a sale. By specifying 24 hour access, minimum width and capacity in the tender, potential buyers can consider the implications prior to making their bid for this government property.
Whether buyers plan to redevelop the site or re-use the building as is, they will simply consider the cost and the space needed, and adjust the amount they bid accordingly.
The sale of the TID Tower provides a ‘once and for all’ opportunity. Once the site is sold it will be difficult to improve the area as future resumption is unpractical.
Making changes to the tender will cause a slight delay in the sale of the TID Tower. It is worth the effort as it would improve the pedestrian environment and traffic flow, and make Mongkok a better place for all.