New office tower to rise up in Central
The old government headquarters in Central will be developed into a new office tower after plans for a huge shopping mall were scrapped.
The reason? There are just too many malls in Central.
During a public consultation exercise held from September to December last year, the government found that most of the respondents did not support the proposed underground mall, the Development Bureau said.
However, it is sticking to its plan to demolish the west wing. A 32-storey office and commercial building will be built on the site, Secretary for Development Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said.
It will provide Grade A office space, with Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing and the Securities and Futures Commission as tenants.
Under the new plan, the commercial area - excluding offices - will be less than one-sixth the size of the initial proposal. Public open space will increase by 10 per cent, from 6,800 to 7,600 square metres. Lam proposed setting aside space for restaurants, education centres and non-profit groups. The Leisure and Cultural Services Department will run some of the facilities.
Civic Party lawmaker Tanya Chan criticised the bureau for ignoring conservationists who were trying to protect the site's cultural legacy.
'It is wrong to demolish the west wing and sell the land,' Chan said.
Green Sense said tearing down the west wing would create 9,600 cubic metres of construction waste.