THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF WETLAND PARK

Make no mistake, this is a view of a mid-rise residential development by Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP) currently under construction. A mega complex edging inches away from one of the three only wetlands in Hong Kong. Any reasonable planner would have stopped 'The city' along Wetland Park Road. Instead, it allowed two parcels -Area 112 and 115, each measured at 30,000 and 96,600 square meters- to be designated as "Comprehensive Development Area". After a bit of research, it turns out CDA is the code word for "to be designated as whatever the developer wants and to sold to the highest bidder years later".

Legislative Council paper No. CB(2)1405/09-10(01) shows that in 2010, these two lots were discussed in the context of the Panel on Welfare Services Subcommittee on Poverty Alleviation. The lots were considered as potential sites for Elderly Community to "promote social and economic development". According to the same paper, it was supposed to produce 1,900 jobs and be a hub for the local community.

Who would have thought? In 2014 the two lots were sold to SHKP for "HK$4.19 billion, which at HK$1,800 per square foot is the lowest in 21 years." Wow! Shocking. Not only are the lots being changed to residential use (vis-a-vis VILLAS OF THE MONTH), it was sold at a below market rate. Instead of being a hub for the community, i.e. Wellness Centre; Elderly Resources Centre; Vocational Training Centre etc. it will be, when completed, a mid-rise exclusive residential property with unobstructed views to the Wetlands.

I am neither claiming corrupt and/ or incompetent officials/ planners were involved, nor am I suggesting the developer tactically bribed somebody. It is to merely point out the unjust system we are living in. Perhaps it is all lawful but the smell of the fishiness stinks. If only the birds could complain, this might not have happened. Or better yet, officials with longer and creative visions.

References:
https://www.legco.gov.hk/…/ws_pa/…/ws_pa0504cb2-1405-1-e.pdf

https://www.info.gov.hk/…/20160429/s16fi_A_TSW_65_1_gist.pdf

https://www.info.gov.hk/…/20171031/s16fi_A_TSW_70_2_gist.pdf

http://www.property.hk/eng/news_content.php…


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