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  • Aug 21, 2014
  • Updated: 2:06am
NewsHong Kong

Hong Kong officials defend artificial beach plan as 'win-win' amid criticism

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 25 October, 2012, 12:47pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 25 October, 2012, 4:36pm

The government on Thursday staged a high-profile defence against environmentalists who oppose the construction of an artificial beach on an ecologically rich shoreline in Tai Po.

At a press conference chaired by Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing and Undersecretary for the Environment Christine Loh Kung-wai, the government vowed to create a “win-win” package – both a new beach and complete conservation of the surrounding environment.

“Development and conservation can co-exist,” said Tsang, the key proponent for the recreational project. “There can be a win-win situation.”

He said the 200-metre-long beach – which occupies less than a tenth of the 3km Ting Kok shoreline – could serve some 1.25 million people living in Tai Po and neighbouring Sha Tin and the North districts, when it opens for use in 2015.

Tsang pointed out that the plan has gone through necessary consultation procedures, including the approval of grants from the finance subcommittee in the Legislative Council, in July.

Loh brought out a six-point conservation plan covering the waters of Plover Cove, transport planning away from the areas of high ecological importance, and close monitoring of the area’s water quality.

Environmentalists last week slammed the government’s assessment reports of the site, after they discovered it is a breeding ground for seahorses, a protected species. The government reports omitted that information.

On Wednesday, they lodged a complaint with the Ombudsman criticising certain government departments.


Some popular artificial beaches in the world:

Sentosa Resort, Singapore

The popular man-made island resort in Singapore attracts five million visitors a year. The 2 kilometre long sheltered beach is divided into three portions: Palawan Beach, Siloso Beach, and Tanjong Beach. These beaches are built from sand brought from Indonesia and Malaysia.


Seagaia Ocean Dome , Japan

The Seagaia Ocean Dome was the world’s largest indoor waterpark, located in Miyazaki, Japan. It includes the world’s largest indoor beach, fake lava-erupting volcano, and the world’s largest retractable roof. Seagaia Ocean Dome was closed in 2007 for renovation.

Sun City, South Africa

The Sun City Resort near Johannesburg offers a small artificial beach and wave pool besides a variety of gambling amenities.

Palm Islands , Dubai

The Artificial Palm Islands and World Islands in Dubai are among the world’s largest man-made beaches. Tons of sand from the lower Persian Gulf were used to create it.

Beach On The Seine River, Paris

On the banks of the River Seine, the beach is complete with palm trees, outdoor showers and hammocks.

Larvotto Beach, Monaco

Larvotto beach is the only public beach in Monaco and is child-friendly. It’s a popular choice for locals as well as visitors.


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This article is now closed to comments

Is this a news story of a plug for artificial beach resorts? I see nothing in the article that discusses environmental impacts, issues and problems in the pretty locations that we see pictures of and the accompanying boosterism that fills more than half the article has no place in a newspaper unless clearly marked as advertizing.
While I get the development pressures for the government, this one just doesn't make any sense.
Is Hong Kong really in a desperate need for more beachfronts? What is it going to be used for? Is this going to be used for recreation? Creating yet another environment for luxury apartments? Both?
This will be done at the expense of the rare bits of greenary in Hong Kong. The artificial beach just isn't the same as the real thing.
Think Twice.


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