URA chief set for another three years

PUBLISHED : Friday, 30 April, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 30 April, 2010, 12:00am

Urban Renewal Authority chairman Barry Cheung Chun-yuen (pictured) is expected to stay on for another three years after his term ends today.

A person close to the authority's board said Cheung had accepted the government's reappointment. The Development Bureau is expected to announce the new terms of board members today, which will involve a small reshuffle.

Board member Francis Chau Yin-ming will be replaced by a new member, as he has already served the board for six years. Chau currently chairs the authority's Kwun Tong district advisory committee.

Under Cheung, who was appointed in May 2007, the URA has integrated a series of green and conservation initiatives.

Besides scaling down some redevelopments projects such as that in Staunton Street, the authority has also tackled public demands, including the preservation of Wing Lee Street in Sheung Wan and the redevelopment of Ma Tau Wai Road after a tenement collapsed there in January.

But adjustments to projects have not won public acclaim easily, with many people wanting a complete revamp of the existing urban renewal strategy - a challenge Cheung is expected to tackle after renewing his term.

Public demands include the introduction of flat-for-flat and shop-for-shop compensation options. People also want a more transparent renewal process, engaging affected residents at the start of the planning process.

In a media interview she gave early this year, Secretary for Development Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor hailed Cheung as the 'best public servant'.