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San Francisco, USA

 

Star Ferry

After much public furor about the relocation and demolition of the Star Ferry pier in Central, I have ridden the ferry to the new pier for the first time. People have staged protests as a last ditch effort to preserve the clock tower. Nevertheless the government have moved ahead and completed the demolition.

I think the effort to save the clock tower is a lost cause. The value of the ferry building comes from it being a functioning pier. Once the land is filled in and roads are built over it, any left over structure will lose the waterfront context and its meaning.

New Star Ferry Pier

All is not lost, as Star Ferry is still in service in the nearby new pier. Although I find it hard to love the mediocre new piers, which tried half-heartedly to be both old and new. Still the plan includes a new waterfront promenade, if executed well, can provide a wonderful open space by the waterfront that Central has never had. I think the true long term threat is actually the relentless advance of land fills, which might reduce the habour into a channel or even into a canyon crowded by sky scrappers. The constant presence of haze and air pollution is also disheartening. I remember the green hills and blue sky of the Victoria Habour in beautiful sunshine. Now people question openly if they can ever see clear sky again.

2007.01.30 [] - comments

 

Hong Kong Wetland Park

I brought my parents to visit the newly opened Hong Kong Wetland Park in Tin Shui Wai. We had a great day's out in the outdoor. The large visitors center has a dramatic view to the wetland. It was swamped by tourists on Sunday though. The student docents worked energetically to show us the exhibition and the life crocodile lying underwater.

2007.01.28 [, ] - comments

 

Hong Kong chief executive resigns

After rumours of his resignation has been widely circulating for 10 days, Hong Kong's chief executive Tung Chee-hwa finally make his resignation official. This brings much relieve to the public and a renewed hope for a better leadership.

Under Tung's 8 year reign Hong Kong has suffered from the crash of real estate market, prolonged economic problems and the SARS crisis. The way he avoided responding to the public about his impending departure for full 10 days is just one last example of him being an indecisive and ineffective leader. All these backroom politics make it all too clear that the chief executive only reports to Beijing and not to the people of Hong Kong.

Still Tung is the first chief executive after the historical return of Hong Kong to China under the "one country two systems" policy. We very much want to recognize some, if any, positive legacy he has left. Sadly perhaps the only thing that would make history is that he failed to complete his second term.

2005.03.10 [] - comments

 

past articles »

 

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