Bruce Lee

Contest opens for ideas to turn Bruce Lee's home into star draw

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 21 July, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 21 July, 2009, 12:00am

If you have an idea of how Bruce Lee's former home in Kowloon Tong should look, there is now a rapt audience that wants to hear all about it.

An international competition seeking ideas to restore the star's former home kicked off yesterday on the 36th anniversary of his untimely death - even if the funding and schedule for such works have yet to be finalised.

The 'Ideas Competition for Bruce Lee's Residence' is open to local and overseas contestants.

The competition - organised by the institutes of architects, planners and surveyors - began accepting entries yesterday. There are two categories, one for professionals such as architects and interior designers, and one for the public.

Yu Panglin, who owns the property at 41 Cumberland Road, hoped the development would commemorate the late star and draw visitors from around the world.

'It has to include a museum, a library, a martial arts corner and a cinema,' said Mr Yu, who agreed to donate the HK$100 million two-storey mansion after a public outcry pleading for the preservation of the place last year. The actor spent his last years there before his death on July 20, 1973, at the age of 32.

'Only in this way can we fully document and promote the contributions that Bruce Lee made. I have already discussed this with [Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Rita Lau Ng Wai-lan] and we have reached a consensus.'

The competition's professional adviser, Bernard Lim Wan-fung, said that the award-winning designs would be taken into account in the final restoration plan.

Registration for the competition will close at the end of next month, with entries to be submitted by October 15. The results are expected to be announced at the end of the year.

However, the questions of how much the restoration would cost, who would be paying and how long it would take remain unanswered.

'It's hard to assess the budget at this stage but the government is very supportive of this project,' Mrs Lau said yesterday, adding that she would not rule out the possibility of getting donations from charities.

Mr Yu hoped that the restoration could be completed as soon as possible. 'I'm already in my 80s and I hope to witness the completion of Bruce Lee's residence in my time,' he said.

Mrs Lau said the government has been in touch with Lee's family, including Lee's surviving daughter Shannon - who will serve as one of the advisers of the competition - and Lee's friends and colleagues, to collect memorabilia for future exhibition at the restored home.

The rules of the competition

Professional group

Open to members of professional institutes of architects, planners, surveyors, engineers, interior designers and landscape architects in Hong Kong, the mainland and overseas

First: HK$ 50,000 and trophy
Second: HK$ 25,000 and trophy
Third: HK$ 12,500 and trophy

Open group

Open to general public

First, second and third places to receive trophies

All entries should respect original layout of home while including additional facilities such as exhibition centre, souvenir shop, reception counter and so on

Registration deadline: August 31
Submission deadline: October 15
Announcement of results: November/December
Further inquiries: SCMP GRAPHIC