• Fri
  • Nov 28, 2014
  • Updated: 3:26pm
NewsHong Kong

Bid to increase development density of West Kowloon Cultural District

Michael Lynch, Chief Executive of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority, says there is no contradiction in the new plan that seeks additional floor area

PUBLISHED : Friday, 29 November, 2013, 12:12pm
UPDATED : Friday, 29 November, 2013, 2:09pm

Half of the additional floor area being sought for the West Kowloon Cultural District will be used for commercial and residential purposes while the other half will be for art facilities, under the government's proposal to increase the development density of the site.

Permanent Secretary for Home Affairs, Raymond Young Lap-mun, revealed the plan after the government announced that it would seek the Town Planning Board's approval to increase by 10 to 15 per cent the plot ratio of the arts hub, equivalent to a floor area of 70,000 to 100,000 square metres. The aim is to generate more income by selling extra space.

At a meeting of the Legislative Council's Joint Subcommittee to Monitor the Implementation of the West Kowloon Cultural District Project, lawmakers expressed concern over the proposed application for the relaxation of development density of the site. Chan Yuen-han, of the Federation of Trade Unions, demanded that the whole additional area, if approved, should be earmarked for more cultural facilities to meet arts groups' needs.

Young maintained that it had always been the arrangement for the administration and the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority to develop half of the site each, and therefore the proposed additional floor area should not be excluded from this arrangement.

Helena Wong Pik-wan, of the Democratic Party, doubted the reasonableness of the authority’s seeking a new area to build retail, dining and entertainment facilities while eliminating these facilities from the original plan of the Xiqu Centre in the project.

Chan Man-wai, executive director of the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority, replied that the reason for scrapping the proposed catering facilities in the atrium of the Xiqu Centre was due to unsuitability of the location.

The authority's chief executive officer, Michael Lynch, defended the two decisions, saying there was no contradiction.

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This article is now closed to comments

rpasea
Out goes the park and in come the developers. Business as usual.
mh0908
Why not take Anthony Wu's creative idea of moving the Queen Elizabeth to Kai Tak? Similarly, move The Academy for Performing Arts from its Wan Chai location to West Kowloon and expand its facilities to accommodate visiting artists, scholars and international students. The academy can manage the performance halls and utilize them for students as classrooms or performance venues when they are not in commercial use. After the relocation, the valuable Wan Chai campus can be demolished for office buildings/hotels or other uses. Hong Kong will then have an arts hub where the core comprises the Arts Academy and surrounded by students, graduates and international artists and scholars. What do you think?
caractacus
I'm waiting to see a deal where a big Hong Kong property developer gets a free chunk of land like Cyberport on a promise to build art facilities then turns it into luxury flats...
mdap
SHENZEN BUILDS AN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FOR A FRACTION OF THE BILLIONS WKCD HAS!
MICHAEL LYCH IS INEPT, HE NEEDS TO BE FIRED!
WKCD IS AN INTERNATIONAL EMBARRASSMENT TO HONG KONG.
seanniem
This has always been a developer's project, i.e. a shopping mall, from day one. It is not about art and culture. Art and culture are nurtured, not constructed. Did the caveman build a cave so he can paint?
seanniem
So it is a shopping mall after all...
pauluszimmerman
The park budget slashed, the basement will be built by Highways Department, plot ratios increased, spineless lack of resolve in addressing the budget shortfall, .... May be Tung was right after all, this should have been built by a developer instead of a committee ... Culture drowning in a grey soup of undetermined origin

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