Time to move all racing to Sha Tin

PUBLISHED : Monday, 06 November, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 06 November, 2000, 12:00am

Saturday, October 28, saw yet another day of traffic chaos and congestion in the Causeway Bay and Happy Valley areas, due to the traffic restrictions caused by the race meeting at Happy Valley racecourse.

It took more than one hour to drive from Central to Happy Valley and more than 40 minutes to get out from Happy Valley back to Central again.

Whether you are in a private car, a bus, tram or public light bus, this is now the normal situation for Wednesday night race meets and the odd weekend meet.

In the 1800s when there was little traffic and few houses in the Causeway Bay and Happy Valley area, a racecourse visited by a few hundred people was no problem.

In the year 2000, in an area which is now totally congested with both traffic and people, having a racetrack visited by thousands of people is ridiculous.

When the huge development at Leighton Hill is completed next year the situation will be made even worse, as Link Road and Ventris Road are a nightmare on normal days, let alone race days.

With the poor road system in Happy Valley and Causeway Bay and the huge inconvenience to the thousands of residents, shoppers and retailers in the area, it is about time some consideration was given to moving all racing to Sha Tin, where the racecourse is in the middle of nowhere.

Of course, the Government and the Jockey Club do not care about the concerns of residents, as long as they are raking in thousands of dollars from the gullible gambling public.

We could take a few tips from Shanghai and turn Happy Valley racecourse into a people's park, the same way that the Shanghai Race Club is now Remin Park.