Former Wan Chai cargo area is transformed into pet playground

PUBLISHED : Friday, 23 March, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 23 March, 2007, 12:00am

A former cargo loading area has been turned into a promenade where animal-lovers can run their dogs and cats against the spectacular backdrop of the harbour.

The Wan Chai waterfront promenade at Hung Hing Road is open to the public today. The 1.2 hectare site offers a mixture of a lawn, timber boardwalk and paved area.

An official opening will be held on April 1, featuring a dog fun area, an animal wheel-of-fortune game and information and education booths.

Water taps and biodegradable plastic bags will be placed at 10 distribution points for disposal of animal waste.

'Toilet booths for humans will also be available, as we understand the location of the promenade is not very user-friendly and members of the public have to walk across a bridge before getting to the promenade,' Wan Chai district councillor Mary Ann King Pui-wai said yesterday.

'Dogs are not allowed to enter most of the parks in Hong Kong. We hope that this promenade will set a good example and tell the government and Hong Kong people that animals and humans can actually live in harmony.'

District council chairwoman Ada Wong Ying-kay said the project cost HK$6 million to HK$7 million.

The project was initiated by the district council, a subcommittee of the Wan Chai Development Phase II Review and the Harbourfront Enhancement Committee.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, whose headquarters is across the road from the promenade, welcomed the opening. 'With a huge canine population of about 200,000, the six public parks now allowing dogs access will never meet demand,' the group's deputy director of welfare services Fiona Woodhouse said.

'Dogs of large and small breeds must be exercised and socialised every day for their well-being,' Dr Woodhouse said.