Director Elaine Chung Lai-kwok's dream of a fresh design for the Central Library under construction in Causeway Bay was shattered yesterday when a Provisional Urban Council joint committee vetoed her proposal and censured her. The Urban Services Department head was condemned by the joint committee of libraries and capital works for seeking to amend the design without council consent. Members voted to keep the original plan, costing less in construction and maintenance. Ms Chung inspired more fury by remaining silent for most of the four-hour meeting. She refused numerous calls by the committee chairman, Democrat Kam Nai-wai, to answer questions and occasionally walked out of the chamber. 'I have not engaged in collusion or made any mistake,' she said in a statement just before ballots were cast. 'Noting the greeting flowers and gifts I have received, I am upright. 'The cause of the incident is not me, but the grave criticism inside and outside the council over the original design. I once thought that councillors would appreciate our efforts to provide a better design, not costing the Urbco a penny more and causing no delay in work. But my wish didn't come true.' She was adamant she and Architectural Services Department Director Pau Shiu-hung had not abused their power. Mr Pau spent $400,000 for four new designs and his department would have been responsible for the $100 million cost of changes. He admitted that the new proposal would mean extra maintenance costs, mainly for electricity and window-cleaning, of $1.6 million a year. Mr Kam said Ms Chung should not act on her own without the direction of the council. 'Her irreverent attitude to the council is particularly regrettable . . . This will handicap our future co-operation,' he said. Members from most parties also condemned Ms Chung's silence at the meeting. Eric Wong Chung-ki of the Social Democratic Front said: 'How can we deal with a Manchester United without Eric Cantona?' Urbco chairman Ronald Leung Ding-bong, who had earlier clashed publicly with Ms Chung, kept his lips sealed during the meeting. But later he said, in a loud voice, that he had a sore throat. One supporter of the new design, Ada Wong Ying-kay, is seeking to have the decision to stick to the original plan repealed by a higher-level standing committee meeting. 'How worthless for us to spend $700 million on an ugly creature like that. Our next generation will suffer from such poor civic architecture,' she said.