New Wan Chai MTR exit to Lee Tung Avenue reveals poor planning
The Wan Chai MTR station concourse is normally congested and rather confusing. So it was good news that a new Lee Tung Avenue exit D had been commissioned which could help ease the pressure on the other exits.
However, after following the wide tunnel under Johnston Road, the only way out is up an escalator and through a narrow passageway inside the Urban Renewal Authority commercial basement. This serves The Avenue development’s residential towers. It is planned that this passageway will be extended under Queen’s Road East to Hopewell Centre and the huge Hopewell Centre II hotel and convention complex. This route is only about three metres wide and, when taking window-shoppers into account, there is barely room for two-way pedestrian traffic.
Patronage at the moment is low because the Lee Tung Avenue entrance and exit is not yet well known. However, given the connections in the future, it should be very busy, and this represents poor planning.
It is also poor design to have the escalator exposed to Hong Kong’s frequent driving rain, so that the lobby gets flooded. It appears that the MTR and URA, with its private developer partners, have given more thought and space priority to the car-parking facility, than to providing effective and convenient pedestrian access for rail customers.
I request the MTR management to let the public know when a proper public MTR entrance to the south side of Johnston Road will be provided, as I cannot believe that after spending so much time and money providing the tunnel under Johnson Road that this inadequate mall passageway will be the solitary exit.
Charlie Chan, Mid-Levels