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Place-making – harbourfront for Hong Kong people (29/5/2016)

Earlier on, Canton-pop singer Leon Lai held a concert at Central Harbourfront for some nights. Despite some twists and turns, with his sincerity and undertaking, Mr Lai managed to turn the crises into opportunities. The concert was held successfully. Turned out that flocks of visitors flooded into the “inner and outer peripheries of the core” of Central Harbourfront with their friends to enjoy a good time night after night. Not only has the concert been described as "things at worst will mend", perhaps it has also become an important chapter of our collective memory......

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Forge ahead and build consensus (22/5/2016)

Last week, Mr Zhang Dejiang, the Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, visited the Development Bureau during his stay in Hong Kong. My colleagues and I briefed him on the overall supply of land, major preliminary proposals on Lantau Development, and Hong Kong’s long term planning vision and strategy. I believe you have considerable knowledge on these issues as information on such work has been publicised by various means (including papers submitted to councils, press releases, promotion on public consultation activities as well as my blog). I would like to share with you again some consolidated figures and information we mentioned before and presented to Mr Zhang......

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Curtain falls on Acacia (15/5/2016)

Despite its foreign origin, Acacia confusa (Acacia) is often found on man-made slopes along the roadsides. This is due to the fact that a lot of man-made roadside slopes were constructed in the past half-century thanks to the rapid development of infrastructure and road networks in Hong Kong. To prevent soil erosion, stabilise slopes and increase vegetation, Acacia was introduced on a massive scale and planted on these man-made slopes because of its fast growing nature on arid land, and has since become the “pioneer” of urban greening in Hong Kong. Every year after springtime, we can often see seas of golden flowers blooming across the territory that touch up our roadside environment......

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Listen closely and make pragmatic moves (8/5/2016)

The public engagement exercise for Lantau development concluded at the end of April. We have received a lot of feedback, and are consolidating and analysing the relevant information. Initial analysis shows that there are public opinions for and against our proposals. Some call for more detailed studies and assessments on Lantau development, including studies on Lantau’s traffic and transport infrastructures and carrying capacity, while some request the formulation of more detailed conservation measures and swift improvement of various infrastructures in the rural village areas. After consolidating all the public opinions and relevant information, we expect to announce the Blueprint for Lantau development at the end of this year, and set out the broad timetable for implementation of various studies and projects......

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Adjust pace when supply surpasses 90 000? (1/5/2016)

Last week, I shared my views on the economic outlook of Hong Kong, pointing out that the economic growth would slow down this year when compared with the last year, and a couple of industry sectors are facing challenges. The local property market has a close tie with the economic situation and is one of the key concerns of the public. The recently released Hong Kong Private Domestic Price and Rental Indices were 270.2 and 163.1 respectively (reflecting the market situation of February), dropped by 11.7 % and 8.1% when compared with the record highs of last September......

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