Year

看「建」未來 「築」及生活 (Chinese only) (27/11/2022)

建造業一直是推動香港經濟和社會發展的重要動力。為吸引更多新人入行,建造業議會在發展局的支持下,聯同逾20個專業團體、行業商會、工會和培訓機構,啟動一項大型的香港建造業推廣計劃。我很高興參與這個活動的啟動禮。今次,我邀請發展局常任秘書長(工務)劉俊傑介紹政府如何以多管齊下的措施來提升建造業整體生產力,而多位年輕人亦會分享他們對行業前景的看法,希望鼓勵更多生力軍加入這個大家庭……

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「改善碼頭計劃」首個完工項目:新南丫島北角碼頭 (Chinese only) (13/11/2022)

政府近年推行「改善碼頭計劃」,旨在提升位於新界及離島偏遠地方的公共碼頭的結構安全,並改善碼頭配套設施,照顧一些主要倚靠船隻出入的村民及漁民作業的基本需要,以及便利市民前往郊遊景點等,當中,改善後的南丫島北角碼頭將於明日(11月14日)啟用。今次,我邀請了土木工程拓展署(土拓署)同事為大家介紹這個在計劃裡首個完成改善工程的項目……

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Initiatives related to land supply in the Policy Address: Enhancing quantity, speed, efficiency and quality (30/10/2022)

Solving the land and housing problem tops the agenda of the current-term Government. In his maiden Policy Address delivered last week, the Chief Executive adopts a multi-pronged land development strategy in four directions, namely “enhancing quantity, speed, efficiency and quality”, to compress land-production procedures, expedite land production and build up a land reserve in the long run, with a view to tackling housing issues, providing a quality living environment and creating strong impetus for growth for Hong Kong. The Development Bureau (DEVB) will implement the initiatives in full steam to build a more livable Hong Kong……

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Full steam ahead for the New Territories Cycle Track Network (16/10/2022)

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and promote the New Territories Cycle Track Network (NTCTN), the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) has organised the “CT60+ Cycling Rewards” for the public. I am pleased to have taken part in the kick-off ceremony earlier, and to see that the existing cycle tracks and facilities serve as pleasant spots for the public to spend their leisure time……

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New era of site safety Smart site for the future (2/10/2022)

The Government attaches great importance to site safety. We regularly review the safety management system of public works and adopt a multi-pronged approach by implementing measures on various fronts, including project design, tender evaluation, contract provisions, works supervision, technology application, regulation of contractors, as well as publicity and promotion, with a view to uplifting site safety performance……

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Creating more high-quality public open spaces for Hong Kong (18/9/2022)

Hong Kong is a highly urbanised and densely populated built-up city. We understand that the public hopes for quality and accessible public open spaces (POSs). In this connection, the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) under the Development Bureau has held a one-year project on the improvement of the local POS design with a view to explore the ways to design a creative and sustainable POS that satisfies the needs of the general public. This time, I have invited a colleague from the ArchSD to introduce the project details. Also, the design thinking advisor will share the results of the project……

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Village Flood Protection Schemes incorporated elements of sustainable development (4/9/2022)

Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has earlier held the San Tin Stormwater Pumping Station Open Day for the public to learn first-hand about its work on flood protection and the promotion of Hong Kong’s sustainable development. This time, I have invited colleagues from the DSD to introduce the Village Flood Protection Schemes, the San Tin Stormwater Pumping Station, as well as the Floating Photovoltaic (FPV) System and the Ecological Floating Island set up at the San Tin Stormwater Storage Pond, so that we can have a better understanding of the Department’s efforts in flood protection and combating climate change……

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Protecting tenants of subdivided units from being overcharged for water (21/8/2022)

To prevent landlords of subdivided units (SDUs) from overcharging their tenants for water, the Waterworks Regulations (WWR) were amended last year. Apart from taking joint actions with other departments to find out whether tenants have been overcharged for water and to step up enforcement, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) has also implemented a pilot scheme for the installation of separate WSD water meters for SDUs to avoid disputes between tenants and landlords, and to prevent landlords from breaking the law inadvertently when recovering charges for water from tenants. This time, I have invited a WSD colleague to talk to us about the pilot scheme. An SDU landlord and a tenant will also share with us why they decided to join the scheme and tell us about the situation following the successful installation of separate water meters……

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Enhancing the harbourfront continuously to create a vibrant city (7/8/2022)

The Government has been striving to make Hong Kong a more liveable city. To enable members of the public to enjoy the harbourfront space freely in an inclusive environment, we will continue to take forward harbourfront development. One of our major development directions is to extend the open management model of “Harbourfront Shared Space” to more harbourfront sites……

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Revitalising Historic Buildings — The Pokfulam Farm (24/7/2022)

The Development Bureau (DEVB) has been proactively promoting heritage conservation and has made some achievements. My colleagues and I submitted a regular report on the progress of the implementation of various heritage conservation initiatives to the Panel on Development of the Legislative Council on 12 July. Among such initiatives, The Pokfulam Farm, revitalised from the Old Dairy Farm Senior Staff Quarters (SSQ) with Grade 1 status under the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme) launched by the DEVB, has come into trial operation after restoration. This time, I have invited the representatives of Caritas–Hong Kong and The Pokfulam Farm, who are responsible for taking forward this revitalisation project, to brief us on the farm’s new look after its revitalisation……

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Development Bureau to make concerted and all-out efforts to serve the community (10/7/2022)

Increasing land and housing supply is a top priority for the current-term Government to better respond to public aspiration for a better living environment and meet the development needs of Hong Kong. On my first day upon taking office as the Secretary for Development (SDEV), I held a meeting with the heads of the departments under the Development Bureau (DEVB) to share my mission and vision. I hope to briefly introduce our future work directions through my first post in “My Blog”……

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Harbourfront Summer Makeover in Celebration of the 25th Anniversary of Hong Kong’s Return to the Motherland (26/6/2022)

The Development Bureau (DEVB) and the Harbourfront Commission (HC) have been proactively taking forward harbourfront development. In addition to connecting the promenades along both sides of the Victoria Harbour, we have also made vigorous efforts to establish an open management mode of “Harbourfront Shared Space” in recent years. I am pleased that the initiative has been well received by members of the public. To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, we have earlier held the “Summer·Harbour” launching ceremony to unveil the summer makeover we made in partnership with local artists for the six precincts on both sides of the harbour. This time, I have specially invited the young artists to introduce their art installations……

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The new extension of the Oil Street Art Space (19/6/2022)

The new extension of the Oil Street Art Space (Oi!) in North Point has been opened to the public recently, allowing visitors to appreciate the Grade II historic building revitalised as an art space, as well as the newly built large outdoor space and exhibition hall. Through architectural design and spatial layout, the new and old buildings echo each other, and the artworks placed on site are integrated to promoting art to the community. This time, I have invited the project design team from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to give us a detailed presentation……

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Lui Seng Chun – a declared monument (12/6/2022)

Last month, the Government announced the declaration of Lui Seng Chun as a monument. Lui Seng Chun is one of the projects under the Development Bureau’s Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme. In 2012, Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) transformed Lui Seng Chun into a Chinese medicine and healthcare centre, preserving its heritage and architectural features while providing a wide range of Chinese medical services to the community. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) and representatives from HKBU to introduce the historical significance and architectural features of Lui Seng Chun, as well as how the building continues to serve the community after revitalisation……

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Tung Chung New Town Extension – Mangrove Planting Scheme (5/6/2022)

The Tung Chung New Town Extension (TCNTE) is the first trial project for the development of a smart low-carbon community on Lantau Island, adopting city concepts that are smart, green and adaptable to climate change. Right from the design and construction stages, the TCNTE project has incorporated the concept of sustainable development, including the creation of Eco-shorelines in the Tung Chung East Extension area. This time, I have invited a colleague from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to tell us about the “Mangrove Planting Scheme”. He will also take us to the trial Eco-shoreline in Tung Chung for a visit to show us how biodiversity can be enhanced by planting mangroves and placing bio-blocks……

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Multi-welfare Services Complex in Kwu Tung North (29/5/2022)

Construction of the Multi-welfare Services Complex (“the Complex”) in Kwu Tung North (KTN) is one of the pilot government projects for the implementation of the KTN New Development Area (NDA). The project will not only provide residential care services for the elderly, disabled persons and mentally handicapped persons, but also offer reprovisioning for the eligible elderly residents living in the existing residential care homes for the elderly (RCHEs) in the Dills Corner Garden (DCG) affected by the KTN NDA development. This time, I have invited two colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to tell us how to provide a comfortable living environment to the occupants under the principle of “people-centric design” in the areas of construction, design and service provision……

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Prevention better than cure: flood prevention (22/5/2022)

To prepare for the rainy season, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has been striving on flood mitigation to further reduce flood risks during rainstorms. This time, I have invited three DSD colleagues to share with us different flood prevention measures, including desilting, repairing and maintaining drainage facilities, the “just-in-time clearance” arrangement, and the use of new technologies to help monitor and analyse flood risks, with a view to reducing the impact of adverse weather on the public by enhancing flood prevention capacity in a comprehensive way……

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Post-90s engineers fighting the virus together (15/5/2022)

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the whole government, including many young faces, have been working in concerted effort to fight the epidemic. Amid the severe epidemic, they have dared to face challenges and proactively taken part in the construction of additional community isolation and treatment facilities. This time, I have invited three Post-90s engineers respectively from a works department, a public utility and a contractor to share their experience of taking part in the urgent works projects and how to rise to the challenges in fighting the virus together……

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Hong Kong Guide 2022 (Photomap Edition) (8/5/2022)

Maps are an indispensable tool for most people in their daily lives. The Survey and Mapping Office (SMO) of the Lands Department (LandsD) has produced various kinds of maps, ranging from the traditional 2D paper editions of the Hong Kong Guide to the latest developed 3D visualisation map, for public use. Earlier on, I have talked about the 3D digital map. This time, I have invited other colleagues of the LandsD to introduce the new Hong Kong Guide and give us an insight into what a digital orthophoto map is……

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Providing support at anti-epidemic facilities (1/5/2022)

To combat the fifth wave of the epidemic, all government departments are fully committed to the anti-epidemic efforts. Since the onset of the epidemic, the Government has been tirelessly identifying suitable venues for departments, contractors or social welfare organisations (SWOs) to operate centres for anti-epidemic purposes. This time, I have invited a colleague of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) and a representative of SWOs to share with us what it is like to combat the epidemic in Hong Kong at the frontline……

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Kai Tak Community Isolation Facility (24/4/2022)

To tackle the fifth wave of the epidemic, a number of community isolation facilities (CIFs) have been constructed in Hong Kong with Mainland support. With the construction of these facilities, our capacity to combat the epidemic has been significantly enhanced. Recently, the first batch of the Penny’s Bay Community Isolation Facility, consisting of around 1 000 units, has been handed over for operation. We will continue to take forward at full steam the remaining facilities in Penny’s Bay, as well as the large-scale CIFs adjacent to the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal and in Lok Ma Chau Loop. This time, I have invited frontline colleagues of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to introduce to us the features of Kai Tak CIF, the challenges encountered during construction, and share with us how they feel......

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Drainage Improvement Works in Tsim Sha Tsui (17/4/2022)

Since 1995, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has removed 127 flooding blackspots, with only four still remaining in Hong Kong. In that regard, the Drainage Improvement Works at Chatham Road South in Tsim Sha Tsui are scheduled to commence in the third quarter of this year, with a view to eventually removing the flooding blackspot from the list. This time, I have invited a colleague from the DSD to talk about details of the Drainage Improvement Works in Tsim Sha Tsui, as well as how to enhance the drainage capacity and mitigate the flooding risk in the area......

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San Tin community isolation facility's sewerage system completed in 7 days (10/4/2022)

In response to the fifth wave of COVID-19 epidemic, the Development Bureau (DEVB) set up a task force for co-ordinating with the Mainland’s construction support teams to provide community isolation and treatment facilities in full swing. Among them is San Tin community isolation facility, for which the Drainage Services Department (DSD) and the contractors have constructed a new public sewerage system and successfully commissioned it within just seven days. This time, I have invited frontline DSD colleagues to talk about the details and challenges of this emergency anti-epidemic project, as well as share with us their feelings......

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Construction industry fighting the virus together (3/4/2022)

In view of the severity of the fifth wave of COVID-19, with the support of the Development Bureau, the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and the construction industry have launched various anti-epidemic measures, including the Construction Industry Caring Campaign 2.0 – Fight against Novel Coronavirus, the Construction Industry COVID-19 Testing Day (Testing Day) and the Vaccine Pass to relieve the possible impact of the epidemic on the industry. This time, I have particularly invited Chairman of the CIC, Mr HO On-sing, Thomas, who just took up the appointment in February, to talk about how the CIC, the industry and frontline workers join hands to help the industry and the community in their fight against the pandemic......

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The Hong Kong 2022 International Urban Forestry Conference held successfully (27/3/2022)

The Hong Kong 2022 International Urban Forestry Conference was held successfully by the Development Bureau (DEVB) early this month. The biennial conference was conducted using webinar for the first time and a total of about 1 200 participants watched it live on the conference website. This time, I have invited a colleague of the Greening, Landscape and Tree Management Section (GLTMS) of the DEVB to share with us the details of the conference…...

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The fight against COVID-19 in the front line — “restriction-testing declaration” operations (20/3/2022)

In view of the severity of the fifth wave of the epidemic in Hong Kong, to effectively minimise the risk of COVID-19 spreading in the community, the Government is making concerted and all-out efforts against the virus. The Development Bureau (DEVB) and the departments under its ambit, including the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), Water Supplies Department, Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), Drainage Services Department (DSD), Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), Lands Department (LandsD), Buildings Department (BD), Planning Department (PlanD) and Land Registry, have deployed more than 1 000 colleagues in total to conduct “restriction-testing declaration” (RTD) and compulsory testing operations at various “restricted areas”. I have specially invited colleagues who have participated in RTD operations to share with us how to roll out the operations in an orderly manner in a very short time and offer help to the affected residents, so as to contain and control the disease in the community as quickly as possible……

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Allocating additional resources to enhance flood prevention capacity (13/3/2022)

Due to extreme weather in recent years, the frequent and severe rainstorms in Hong Kong have made flood prevention very challenging to the Drainage Services Department (DSD). To nip it in the bud, the Government is seeking funding approval of about $8.4 billion to carry out drainage improvement works in various districts to enhance the capacity of flood prevention. This time, I have invited a colleague of the DSD to tell us how they improve Hong Kong’s drainage systems to mitigate the impact of rainstorms and flooding……

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Paying attention to the condition of drainage pipes amid the epidemic (6/3/2022)

Amid the epidemic, everyone should go further to protect themselves and their family. Apart from keeping home environment clean, maintaining the “health” condition of drainage pipes is of paramount importance. During the fight against the epidemic, members of the public should pay attention to whether indoor drainage pipes are in good condition and traps are functioning properly to guard against viruses. This time, I have specially invited a colleague from the Buildings Department (BD) to brief on the importance of “healthy” traps and the ways of maintaining their normal functioning……

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Enhancing manpower training of the construction industry (27/2/2022)

In the coming years, Hong Kong’s volume of overall construction output will continue to grow, with a strong demand for skilled workers. The Government has proposed to allocate $1 billion to support the Construction Industry Council (CIC) to further enhance manpower training for the construction industry. This time, I have invited the Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr LAU Chun-kit, Ricky, to explain how the Government's proposed measures will further enhance the overall productivity of the construction industry. Two young people who have benefited from the Government's training allowance will also share their views on the outlook of the construction industry……

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Invigorating Island South initiative (20/2/2022)

After the Chief Executive put forward the Invigorating Island South (IIS) initiative in her 2020 Policy Address, the Invigorating Island South Office (IISO) was set up under the Development Bureau in February 2021. Earlier on, IISO has formulated the first Conceptual Master Plan (CMP) covering the Wong Chuk Hang, Aberdeen and Ap Lei Chau areas, and gauged views from various sectors on the CMP. This time, I have specially invited the Head of IISO, Ms AU Kit-ying, Brenda, to talk about the initiative. The team leader of the first prize winning team in the Design Competition on Green Link in Wong Chuk Hang will also share with us the design concept of their work.……

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"Lung Mun Three Brothers"—Desilting and Pipe-rehabilitation Robots (13/2/2022)

The Drainage Services Department (DSD) has always endeavoured to apply innovative technologies in its daily operation and maintenance work, so as to enhance work efficiency and site safety. For example, in the undergoing "Rehabilitation of Trunk Sewers in Tuen Mun", three robots – "Lung Mun Three Brothers" – are used to assist in desilting and rehabilitation of sewers. This time, I have invited a colleague from the DSD to talk about the details.....

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Lands Department – 3D Pedestrian Network (6/2/2022)

Today is the sixth day of the Lunar New Year. Let me start by wishing you all good health and all the best throughout the year. In our daily lives, we get accustomed to searching routes with mobile maps, or locating car parks, bus stops and the like with applications in our mobile phones. All these involve the use of “spatial data” with reference to a specific geographical location. The Lands Department (LandsD) has been striving to press ahead with the development of the Common Spatial Data Infrastructure to facilitate the consolidation, exchange, sharing and innovative application of geospatial information, and to launch a territory-wide 3D digital map in phases. Earlier on, the 3D Pedestrian Network and the 3D Visualisation Map have been made available to the public for free. In this post, I have invited Mr CHU Siu-ki, Alex, Assistant Director (Survey and Mapping) of the LandsD, to give us a detailed briefing......

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“Nothing about people's livelihoods is trivial” - serving the public with dedication (30/1/2022)

Today is the 28th day of the last lunar month, so I would like to start off by wishing you all a happy and prosperous Chinese New Year! The Ombudsman’s Awards Scheme was established by the Office of The Ombudsman in 1997. Over the years, a number of departments and colleagues under the Development Bureau have received the awards. Among them is a young engineer, Miss LEE Kit-chun, who received the Ombudsman’s Award for Officers of Public Organisations last year. She works in the Municipal Sector Division of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), providing electrical and mechanical support and maintenance services for municipal facilities, as well as handling public enquiries and complaints. During the COVID-19 outbreaks, she and her team have been committed to supporting the anti-epidemic work. This time, I have invited her to introduce her work and share with us her experience of serving the public with the conviction that “Nothing about people's livelihoods is trivial”......

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Mr CHAN Ka-kui, Chairman of the Construction Industry Council (23/1/2022)

The Construction Industry Council (CIC) has been a cordial partner of the Development Bureau for a long time. Having led the CIC for six years as the Chairman since February 2016, Mr CHAN Ka-kui, KK, will leave office at the end of this month. Under his leadership, the CIC has made enormous contribution in advancing construction innovation, promoting technological application, providing manpower training and building industry solidarity. I am very grateful for his contribution. This time, I have made a special invitation to have KK talk to us about his six eventful years at the CIC, a journey that is anything but ordinary......

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Leisure space at Kowloon East Business Area (16/1/2022)

With the implementation of the Energizing Kowloon East (EKE) initiative, the old industrial areas in Kowloon East (KE) and the former Kai Tak Airport site have been gradually transformed into a second core business district (CBD) in Hong Kong over a period of nearly 10 years. In addition to increasing commercial floorspace, the initiative also strives to improve the environment in the district, enhance connectivity and create significantly more public open space, providing the public with relaxing sanctuaries among dense commercial buildings. Early last month, the Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), LAU Chun-kit, Ricky, and I visited the InPARK on Tsun Yip Street, Kwun Tong. There, the Head of Energizing Kowloon East Office (EKEO), Amy CHEUNG, shared with us the work of EKEO in enhancing public open space......

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Ex-Sham Shui Po Service Reservoir (9/1/2022)

Since late last year, the Ex-Sham Shui Po Service Reservoir (Ex-SSPSR), commonly known as Mission Hill Service Reservoir, has begun to offer restricted opening to the public for their visits. Although the COVID-19 situation has resulted in the service reservoir being temporarily closed to the public and the guided tours suspended, people interested in the service reservoir can still learn more about its history and features by visiting the website of the Water Supplies Department (WSD) for a virtual tour. Recently, I also invited a WSD colleague to share with us the history of this service reservoir which was built more than a hundred years ago......

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Urban Renewal Fund in its 10th anniversary (2/1/2022)

Entering 2022, I wish you all good health and every success in the new year. Earlier on, I attended the Urban Renewal Fund (URF) 10th Anniversary Conference. As one of the major highlights of the Urban Renewal Strategy promulgated in 2011, the URF was founded to render assistance to the residents affected by redevelopment projects and to promote heritage preservation and district revitalisation by adopting a “people first, district-based, public participatory” approach to urban renewal. This time, I have invited the Chairman of the Board of the URF, Professor NGAI Sek-yum, Steven, to introduce the work of the URF so as to give us an insight into how connecting, inheriting, co-creating and integrating can be accomplished in residential communities......

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Historic building maintenance by the Architectural Services Department (2) (26/12/2021)

Last week, I invited colleagues of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to talk about how the department restores and maintains old buildings with historical, architectural and cultural significance. This week, two other colleagues of the ArchSD will talk in detail about how they are always on standby for the conservation of historic buildings - especially in an emergency, when they need to rush to the scene for emergency inspections to make sure damaged old buildings will not pose a danger to the public......

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Historic building maintenance by the Architectural Services Department (1) (19/12/2021)

The Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) designs, constructs and maintains the majority of government buildings and public facilities, from office buildings, community centres, markets to parks, playgrounds and public open space. Do you know, however, that the ArchSD is also responsible for restoring and maintaining a lot of old buildings with historical, architectural and cultural significance? For two weeks in a row, I am inviting colleagues from the ArchSD to talk about the department’s work on historic building maintenance......

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First round of projects approved under the Lantau Conservation Fund (2) (12/12/2021)

The Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department has set up a $1 billion Lantau Conservation Fund (LCF), with $500 million dedicated to supporting eligible organisations and post-secondary education institutions in conducting research, or carrying out conservation and related projects in collaboration with local communities. A first round of 18 projects have been approved for funding, covering various aspects of Lantau’s nature and cultural conservation. Last week, I invited representatives of Regenerating Shui Hau, one of the approved projects, to give us an introduction. This time, representatives of two other approved projects will share with us details of their environmental education work and habitat studies in Lantau......

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First round of 18 projects approved under the Lantau Conservation Fund (1) (5/12/2021)

Lantau has a wealth of natural and cultural resources. The Government has been promoting the sustainable development of Lantau following the principle of “Development in the North; Conservation for the South”. In the 2018 Policy Address, the Chief Executive announced the establishment of a $1 billion Lantau Conservation Fund (LCF) to promote and support Lantau conservation. Assessment results of the first-round applications have been announced earlier, with 18 projects approved. This time, I have invited the Head of the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), Mr FONG Hok-shing, Michael, and the Chairperson of the LCF Advisory Committee, Prof. LEUNG Mei-yee, Kenneth, to introduce the fund. Also, representatives of an approved project will talk about its details......

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Fence-free designs for unblocked sea views (28/11/2021)

The Government has been striving to take forward harbourfront development. Through the collaborative efforts with the Harbourfront Commission (HC), 12 harbourfront sites have been opened progressively thus far since October last year for public enjoyment; the management mode of “Harbourfront Shared Space” adopted on a trial basis has also been well-received by the public. In her Policy Address this year, the Chief Executive has also stated that a completely fence-free stepped-down water edge design will be adopted for the first time at the Victoria Harbour to enable visitors to sit by the sea and enjoy an unobstructed view of the beautiful Victoria Harbour. This time, I have specially invited the Chairman of the HC, Mr NG Wing-shun, Vincent, to give us a detailed briefing on the design......

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New promenade in Tung Chung and the opening of Tung Chung Community Liaison Centre (21/11/2021)

The Government has all along endeavoured to further develop Tung Chung New Town (TCNT) into a more comprehensively planned community with sufficient ancillary facilities. Recently, I attended the completion ceremony of the Tung Chung East Promenade first phase improvement works and opening of the Tung Chung Community Liaison Centre (CLC). The first phase of the promenade is the waterfront area that was previously a construction site, whereas the CLC has taken up the space that was used as the site office. After full revitalisation, they will bring a whole new experience to local residents. This time, a colleague from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) will share with us details of the promenade improvement works and the various facilities available in the CLC......

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Government sites available for short-term tenancy applications (2) (14/11/2021)

Last week, I introduced to you the work of the Lands Department (LandsD) on approving applications by non-government organisations (NGOs) and social enterprises for short-term uses of government sites. In furtherance of the gainful use of land, the Development Bureau (DEVB) launched the Funding Scheme to Support the Use of Vacant Government Sites by NGOs in February 2019 to support successful applicant organisations in pursuing basic restoration works in a bid to take forward worthy projects for the community. This time, I have invited one of my colleagues in the DEVB to brief us on the implementation of the funding scheme since its launch, and some of the grantee organisations will share with us their experiences......

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Government sites available for short-term tenancy applications (1) (7/11/2021)

To optimise the utilisation of land resources, non-government organisations (NGOs) and social enterprises may submit applications to the Lands Department (LandsD) for short-term tenancy (STT) of government sites available for short-term uses. This time, I have invited a colleague from the LandsD to talk about the STT applications for these sites, and one of the NGOs which have been granted an STT site will share experience with us......

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Kwu Tung North/Fanling North New Development Area (31/10/2021)

Pressing ahead with the implementation of various projects of New Development Areas (NDAs) in the New Territories is an integral part of the Government’s land supply strategy in the medium to long term. These NDAs will also be the major source of housing supply. Recently, the Chief Executive unveiled the Northern Metropolis Development Strategy (the Development Strategy) in her Policy Address. The Northern Metropolis encompasses maturely developed new towns including Tin Shui Wai, Yuen Long, Fanling/Sheung Shui and their neighbouring rural areas, as well as six NDAs and Development Nodes in different planning and development stages, namely Kwu Tung North/Fanling North (KTN/FLN), Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen, Yuen Long South, San Tin/Lok Ma Chau, Man Kam To and the New Territories North New Town......

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Landslide Sci-Tech Chamber in drainage tunnel (24/10/2021)

This month, two tropical cyclones, Lionrock and Kompasu, hit Hong Kong one after another. As we know, with heavy rainfall always comes a bigger risk of landslides. In 1972, the catastrophic landslide at Po Shan Road in the Mid-Levels shattered a number of buildings, including the 12-storey Kotewall Court, and took away 67 lives. Afterwards, the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) under the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) implemented a series of landslip prevention and mitigation works in the Po Shan area, among which was the Po Shan Drainage Tunnel. Completed in 2009, the Po Shan Drainage Tunnel reduces the risk of major landslides by controlling the groundwater levels with innovative technology. Also, to convey the importance of slope safety to the public, the Landslide Sci-Tech Chamber has been set up by the GEO in the tunnel......

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Proactively pursuing urban renewal with the Urban Renewal Authority (17/10/2021)

In her latest Policy Address, the Chief Executive stated that more effective policy measures should be adopted to expedite the pace of redevelopment and renewal in view of the rapid ageing of buildings. As one of the measures, the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) has recently completed the District Study for Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok (Yau Mong District Study), which maps out a blueprint for restructuring and replanning the two old districts, identifies development nodes (DNs) and proposes an array of new planning tools with a view to enhancing land use efficiency and redevelopment potential. The Policy Address has also put forward similar district planning studies for another two old districts, namely Tsuen Wan and Sham Shui Po. Earlier on, I invited the Managing Director of the URA, Ir WAI Chi-sing, to visit Mong Kok and talk about urban renewal......

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All-out efforts to map out Hong Kong’s future (10/10/2021)

The solution to address the housing problem of people in Hong Kong thoroughly, as the Chief Executive says, rests on the determination to sustain land supply. The Government has spared no effort to increase land supply by adopting a multi-pronged approach and pressing ahead at full steam with various development projects in order to provide enough land to meet the housing, economic and social development needs. The efforts also aim at improving the living conditions in Hong Kong with a view to meeting public aspirations for “larger homes”. In her latest Policy Address, the Chief Executive has gone the extra mile and put forward the Northern Metropolis Development Strategy (the Development Strategy), which proactively plans for the future by mapping out new action directions and approaches for the long-term development prospects of Hong Kong......

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Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr LAM Sai-hung, to retire (3/10/2021)

Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr LAM Sai-hung, joined the Government in the 1980s. He has witnessed the rapid development of Hong Kong’s economy and infrastructure beginning in the 1970s, and taken part in various large-scale infrastructure projects, which he still vividly remembers. This time, I have invited Mr LAM Sai-hung to talk about his feelings and share his experience with us......

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70th anniversary of the Mines Division (26/9/2021)

This year is the 70th anniversary of the Mines Division. To mark the occasion, the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) under the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) held a thematic exhibition and a forum for the 70th anniversary of the Mines Division, introducing its development and main duties. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Mines Division to give us a detailed introduction......

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Sustainable river channel project — Yuen Long Bypass Floodway (19/9/2021)

In order to mitigate flood risks in Yuen Long town centre, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) constructed a “canal”, Yuen Long Bypass Floodway. Constructed with quite a number of improvement designs and engineering technologies, this man-made channel has beautified the environment and provided a new habitat for numerous plant and animal species while minimising flood risks at the town centre. This time, I have invited a colleague of the DSD to share the project details with you......

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Conference on integration of Hong Kong’s planning, architectural and related engineering sectors into the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (12/9/2021)

Last Tuesday (7 September), the Development Bureau (DEVB) held with the Bureau of Territorial and Spatial Planning of the Ministry of Natural Resources, the Department of Natural Resources of Guangdong Province (DNRGP) and the Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of Guangdong Province (DHURDGP) a conference for Hong Kong’s architectural, surveying, planning, landscape (ASPL) and engineering sectors to brief participants on a number of preferential policies and liberalisation measures to facilitate the starting of businesses and practising in the nine Mainland cities of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA), Qianhai and Hengqin by relevant enterprises and professionals. Over 100 representatives from relevant local professional institutions, associations and registration boards as well as enterprises participated in the conference......

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New Territories North New Development Area (5/9/2021)

The current-term Government has been making efforts to develop land by adopting a multi-pronged strategy. In particular, the development of new development areas in the New Territories North (“NTN”) (hereinafter referred to as “NTN New Development Area”) is one of the key initiatives on land and housing supply in the medium to long term. With an area spanning more than 1 500 hectares of land, the NTN New Development Area, which comprises three potential development areas (PDAs), namely the NTN New Town, Man Kam To (MKT) and San Tin/Lok Ma Chau Development Node (STLMC DN), is expected to provide not less than 100 000 housing units for accommodating a population of not less than 280 000. Meanwhile, about 200 000 job opportunities will be created in tandem with the development of innovation and technology. Situated at a strategic boundary location in proximity to a port economy belt in Shenzhen, the NTN New Development Area can tap into the opportunities brought about by the rapid economic growth of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) with unlimited development potential.....

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Behind the scenes of the exhibition of Song-Yuan Archaeological Discoveries (29/8/2021)

At Sung Wong Toi Station, we often see passengers take a break from their journey to appreciate the Song-Yuan heritage exhibition. Treasures from Sacred Hill: Song-Yuan Archaeological Discoveries at Sung Wong Toi is the first heritage exhibition at a public transport station in Hong Kong. On display are artefacts specially selected by the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) from over 700 000 pieces of archaeological finds, including ceramic sherds from the Song-Yuan period and coins from the Song period. This time, I have invited colleagues from AMO to share with you the preparation and research done behind the scenes......

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Bonham Road Government Primary School declared as a monument (22/8/2021)

Walking along Bonham Road, have you noticed the white school premises with a curved facade? Despite the simple silhouette, the aesthetic school premises are full of distinctive features. With 80 years of history, this pre-war building has all along been serving education purposes. Having once been the premises of a post-secondary college, it is now home to the Bonham Road Government Primary School. In July this year, the Government declared the school premises as a monument. This time, I have made a special invitation to have colleagues from the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) tell us about the building’s architectural features and history......

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A talk with Outstanding Young Persons in the construction industry (15/8/2021)

The construction industry is an important driving force behind Hong Kong’s economic and social development. With a view to attracting more new blood to the industry, the Government has been collaborating with the Construction Industry Council (CIC) as well as the industry in providing diversified and systematic training, to help young people with their career ladder, and facilitate the passing down of skills and craftsmanship. The CIC organised the “Construction Industry Outstanding Young Person Award” (CIOYPA) again this year to commend and honour the outstanding young practitioners in the industry, and encourage them to strive for excellence and continuous improvement. This time, I have invited two of the young awardees to tell us their stories......

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Geospatial Lab is officially open (8/8/2021)

To take forward smart city development, the Development Bureau (DEVB) is constructing the Common Spatial Data Infrastructure (CSDI), and establishment of the Geospatial Lab (GeoLab) is one of the major initiatives. Providing a “geospatial” community, the GeoLab encourages the younger generation, start-ups and creative minds to harness spatial data in developing innovative applications that will bring benefits and convenience to the public. The GeoLab has been officially open, and I attended the opening ceremony. What facilities and services does the new GeoLab provide? What does it do to promote exploration of spatial data application? In this post, I have specially invited colleagues from the Spatial Data Office (SDO) to tell us about it......

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Development Bureau and works departments receiving the New Engineering Contract awards (1/8/2021)

The Government has been taking forward various types of public works projects in an orderly manner, meanwhile enhancing the quality and performance of projects through continuous improvement on project management. Since 2009, the Development Bureau (DEVB) has been adopting the “New Engineering Contract” (NEC) form in public works projects for more efficient contract management. The Bureau and its works departments have even won a number of international NEC awards this year, which is quite an encouraging achievement. This time, I have invited some colleagues to explain the advantages of adopting the NEC form, and share with us details of one of the award-winning projects......

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Experimental “Harbourfront Shared Space” (25/7/2021)

The Government has been striving to take forward harbourfront enhancement in recent years, aiming at building a continual stretch of world-class promenade for the public to relax on and enjoy. The Belcher Bay harbourfront open space in the Western District is a key pilot site. It adopts a “no-frills” design, and the facilities here are mostly mobile, such as rearrangeable cargo pallets, and roller pallets for sliding around. Now it has even got a land-based “Waterpark”. These facilities encourage visitors of different age groups to unleash their creativity and enjoy the harbourfront, sedentarily or energetically, with mutual respect and in an inclusive manner......

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Opening of the new Tsuen Wan waterfront cycle track (18/7/2021)

The Government strives to implement the about 82 km-long “New Territories cycle track network”, connecting the East and West of the New Territories for the purposes of leisure and recreation. As part of the network, the Tuen Mun to Ma On Shan backbone section was linked up last year, while the Tsuen Wan to Tuen Mun backbone section, about 22 km long, is being implemented in stages. The waterfront section in Tsuen Wan will first open tomorrow (19 July) for public enjoyment. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to talk about this new cycle track with a length of around 2 km, as well as its supporting facilities, design features, challenges encountered and so on......

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Tai Po Lung Mei Beach (11/7/2021)

Tai Mei Tuk has long been a popular venue for cycling and water sports. With the opening of Tai Po Lung Mei Beach for public use last month, nearby residents and visitors now have another good place for leisure and recreational activities. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to talk about this man-made beach built by the Government, and share with us the construction process and challenges encountered. Colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) will tell us about the architectural design and features of the ancillary facilities of the beach......

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Kai Tak Sky Garden (4/7/2021)

The Kai Tak Sky Garden, situated at the former Kai Tak Airport runway, has recently opened. Drawing design inspiration from the former Kai Tak Airport, the sky garden brings back collective memories of the old airport. Now it has become a new landmark in the Kai Tak Development Area. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to talk about the design and characteristics of the sky garden, and to share the pleasure in visiting the park......

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City Gallery reopens after renovation (27/6/2021)

The City Gallery is the first planning and infrastructure gallery in Hong Kong. Resuming full operation last month after partial renovation, the gallery now houses a number of new interactive games and selfie spots. In this post, I have invited a colleague from the Planning Department (PlanD) to brief us on the new items and facilities. Moreover, a colleague from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) will share with us about a thematic exhibition staged by the department in the gallery.....

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Not easy to be a father amid the pandemic (20/6/2021)

Today is Father’s Day. First of all, I would like to wish all fathers a Happy Father’s Day! In my previous blog posts, I have also invited colleagues of our departments who are fathers to share their stories on Father’s Day. This time, the good father I would like to introduce to you is someone whose youngest son was born last December, when he was taking part in the temporary hospital construction project day and night in the fight against the pandemic. He will share with us how he strikes a balance between work and his family responsibilities. I will also invite a “qualified” colleague to comment if he is a good father......

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Hong Kong Children’s Hospital received the top accolade in Quality Building Award (13/6/2021)

The results of Quality Building Award (QBA) 2020 were announced at the award presentation ceremony held earlier. The Hong Kong Children’s Hospital (HKCH), designed and built by the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), has won both the top Quality Excellence Award and the Grand Award of Hong Kong Non‐Residential (New Building ‐ Government, Institution or Community) Category. This time, I have specially invited the Director of Architectural Services, Ms HO Wing-yin, Winnie, and Project Director of the ArchSD, Mr LI Kiu-yin, Michael to introduce the design and architectural features of the HKCH. Chairman of QBA 2020 Organizing Committee, Mr Peter MOK, will tell us why the HKCH has won the highest accolade......

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Smart site of Civil Engineering and Development Department (6/6/2021)

The Tung Chung New Town Extension (TCNTE) is the first trial project for developing a smart low-carbon community on Lantau Island, adopting city concepts that are smart, green and resilient to environment and climate. Under the project, the Tung Chung East reclamation works are being carried out on schedule. The Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) has adopted over 30 innovative technologies in various aspects of works, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), the cloud systems, Artificial Intelligence (AI), satellite navigation and smart safety measures, with the aim of ushering in smart city development. This time, colleagues from the CEDD will take us to the Innovation Hub of the Tung Chung East reclamation works (InnoTCE) to explain how the project team utilises innovative technologies to enhance site management and operation efficiency, as well as to further improve site safety......

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Introducing the work of the Land Registry (30/5/2021)

Deeds are vital documents to property owners. They are not just about property interests. Banks will take into account information on the land register when processing mortgage applications from property owners. To safeguard the interests of property owner, deeds have to be registered at the Land Registry (LR). This time, I have specially invited colleagues from the LR to talk about the deeds registration process and how the LR improves the quality and efficiency of its service with modern facilities and their one-stop deeds registration service......

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EMSD’s outstanding achievements at International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva (23/5/2021)

The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) has all along been proactive in applying innovative technologies to enhance service quality, and ensuring that electrical, mechanical and energy technologies are harnessed in a safe, reliable, economical and environmentally friendly manner to continuously enhance people’s quality of life. I am delighted to share with you the EMSD’s outstanding achievements at this year’s International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva. Four Gold Medals and four Silver Medals have been awarded to the department. This time, I have invited the teams to introduce to us two of their award-winning inventions......

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The land sale mechanism and process (16/5/2021)

Every year after the Budget Speech, the Government will announce the annual Land Sale Programme, which sets out the residential and commercial sites available for sale for the next financial year. Apart from that, the Government will announce the land sale programmes in advance on a quarterly basis in order to provide transparency and certainty for the market. Land is pivotal in meeting Hong Kong’s housing, social and economic development needs, and the proceeds from land sale form a substantial part of the government's revenue. We have the responsibility to ensure that land sale is conducted through a fair, just and competitive mechanism so as to achieve optimal use of our land resources. In this blog post, I have specially invited Mr Tony MOYUNG, Deputy Director of the Lands Department, to introduce to us the Government’s land sale mechanism and process......

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A good mother from the Architectural Services Department (9/5/2021)

Today is Mother’s Day. First of all, I would like to wish you all a Happy Mother’s Day! Like last year, we are spending this year’s Mother’s Day amid the COVID-19 pandemic. All of you please take care of your health and continue to protect yourselves from the virus. This time, I have made a special invitation for a working mother from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to talk to us about her daily work and, of course, share with us her busy life looking after a pair of boy-and-girl twins amid the pandemic......

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Water Supplies Department’s unmanned surface vessel system (2/5/2021)

Raw water in impounding reservoirs is a major drinking water source in Hong Kong. The Water Supplies Department (“WSD”) monitors the water quality and collects water samples in impounding reservoirs on a regular basis to keep track of any changes in water quality, so that drinking water safety can be ensured by more effective water treatment processes in water treatment works. To further enhance the water quality monitoring, the WSD has introduced a new Unmanned Surface Vessel (“USV”) system in recent years to perform automatic water quality monitoring and sampling in impounding reservoirs, boosting efficiency through adoption of innovation and technology. This time, I have invited a colleague from the WSD to talk about the details......

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Long Valley Nature Park (25/4/2021)

When taking forward projects in new development areas, we will attach importance to environmental and nature conservation to provide a green and quality living space to people in these areas. The Kwu Tung North (KTN) and Fanling North (FLN) New Development Area (NDA) forms a core part of the multi-pronged land supply strategy in the medium and long term, and the construction of the Long Valley Nature Park is part and parcel of the KTN/FLN NDA project. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) and the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) to tell us about the project details of conserving and enhancing the ecological environment of Long Valley. Also, a representative of the Conservancy Association, advisor of the project, will share her suggestions on conservation in Long Valley......

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Sai Lau Kok Garden after redevelopment (18/4/2021)

Hong Kong is a dense and compact city. A garden in the downtown area can no doubt offer people a quiet respite from the hustle and bustle of the city and promote healthy living. After redevelopment, the Sai Lau Kok Garden, located at the centre of Tsuen Wan, presents visitors with a refreshing and pleasant change both inside and outside. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to tell us how they gave the old-fashioned garden that used to sit at a corner a makeover by applying innovative design ideas, turning it into a popular recreational space for people......

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Adoption of innovation and technology to enhance slope safety management (11/4/2021)

The Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) under the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) recently held the “Innotech Forum on Geotechnology”, providing a platform for industry practitioners to exchange views on the application of innovation and technology in geotechnical engineering. Although the forum had to be held via video conferencing due to the epidemic, it got the attention of about 1 000 participants including technology personnel, academics and industry practitioners from around the world. This time, I have specially invited colleagues of the GEO to tell us about the forum, and share with us how to adopt innovation and technology to enhance slope safety management for landslip prevention and mitigation......

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Revitalising an old welfare centre into Eco-Learn Institute (4/4/2021)

To preserve our precious historic buildings, apart from retaining their architectural structures, we also need to revitalise them for public appreciation and use, so that they can acquire new social significance. Earlier I have introduced two projects under batch IV of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme. This time, I will talk about the remaining project of similar significance – the revitalisation of the Lady Ho Tung Welfare Centre into the Lady Ho Tung Welfare Centre Eco-Learn Institute. I have also invited Vice Chairman of the Sik Sik Yuen, Mr CHAN Chant-fai, who is responsible for the revitalisation project, to share the details of the project......

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Tree labels with QR codes (28/3/2021)

There is a large number of trees in the territory. Different tree species can be seen along roadsides and in parks. For trees to grow healthily, apart from the comprehensive risk assessment and regular maintenance of trees carried out by the tree management departments, the co-operation of the public is also very important. We are now launching a scheme for tree labels with QR codes, hoping to raise public awareness of trees and their maintenance so that we can all work together to reduce the risk of tree failure. This time, I have invited a colleague from the Development Bureau (DEVB), a landscape architect and a botanist, who are in charge of implementing the scheme, to introduce the details to us......

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Project under Batch IV of the Revitalisation Scheme — The Pokfulam Farm (21/3/2021)

Recently in My Blog, I have introduced to you the Tai Hang Fire Dragon Heritage Centre, which is one of the projects under Batch IV of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme). This time, I would like to share with you another creative project – Revitalisation of the Old Dairy Farm Senior Staff Quarters (SSQ) into the Pokfulam Farm. I have invited the person in charge of the revitalisation project, Mr LAM Sair-ling, who is an architect and the Director of the Pokfulam Farm Company Ltd, to share with us details of the project......

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Proactive integration into the overall development of the country (16/3/2021)

The National People’s Congress has approved the “Outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development of the People's Republic of China and the Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035” (the 14th Five-Year Plan), which is the blueprint and action agenda for economic and social development of the country in the next five years......

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Smart Planning in Digital Era (14/3/2021)

Smart city development can improve people's livelihood and make Hong Kong a more liveable city. Earlier on, the Planning Department (PlanD) has completed the feasibility study on the “Development of a Common Spatial Data Infrastructure - Built Environment Application Platform” (CSDI-BEAP Study), which aims at developing prototype applications on specific areas such as city planning, infrastructure and environment based on spatial data, in order to facilitate implementation of works and projects, increase efficiency in planning and development, and enhance collaboration among Government bureaux and departments to provide better services to the public. In this blog post, I would like to invite a colleague from the PlanD to brief us on the study......

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Relocation of Sha Tin Sewage Treatment Works to caverns (7/3/2021)

Rock cavern development is one of the Government’s multi-pronged strategies to increase land supply, which is of great importance to Hong Kong’s long-term development. The Drainage Services Department (DSD) has commenced relocating the Sha Tin Sewage Treatment Works (STW), which is currently located at the mouth of Shing Mun River, to the cavern site at Nui Po Shan of A Kung Kok at the opposite bank with a view to releasing the existing site for uses beneficial to people’s livelihood and improving the local living environment. The relocation is currently the largest on-going cavern development project in Hong Kong. This time, I have invited two colleagues from the DSD to introduce the details of the works and explain how to enhance works efficiency by adopting new technologies......

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Building Drainage System Repair Subsidy Scheme (28/2/2021)

The epidemic has raised the public concern on environmental hygiene, including the condition of drainage pipes of buildings. The Financial Secretary just announced in the Budget that $1 billion would be earmarked to launch the Building Drainage System Repair Subsidy Scheme (DRS) in collaboration with the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) to provide financial assistance to owners of old buildings of relatively low rateable values in carrying out drainage investigation, repair or upgrading works, with a view to jointly creating a safe and healthy living environment. In this blog post, I have invited a colleague from the Buildings Department (BD) to give a briefing on the scheme......

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Promoting green living in Lantau (21/2/2021)

With its unique environment, Lantau has a wealth of natural and cultural resources. The Government promulgated the Sustainable Lantau Blueprint in 2017 with “Development in the North; Conservation for the South” as the principle to promote sustainable development of Lantau. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to talk about the planning and promotion of green living in Lantau. The Chairperson of the Lantau Conservation Fund (LCF) Advisory Committee, Prof. LEUNG Mei-yee, Kenneth, will also talk about the support provided under the LCF for promoting conservation and minor local improvement works in the hope of raising awareness of conservation of Lantau and encouraging participation from more people, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and the local communities......

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Tai Hang Fire Dragon Heritage Centre (14/2/2021)

Today is the third day of the Lunar New Year. First of all, I would like to wish you good health and prosperity! Chinese people have attached particular importance to traditional festivals. Hong Kong, a small city as it might be, has carried on the heritage of a number of traditional festive events. Under Batch IV of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme), No.12 School Street in Tai Hang, Causeway Bay will be converted into the Tai Hang Fire Dragon Heritage Centre for the general public to appreciate and use the historic building while also learning about the Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance and the traditional Hakka culture and history. This time, I have invited a representative of the non-profit-making organisation (NGO) responsible for revitalising this old building to share the details of the scheme......

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2020 Sustainable Slope Excellence Award (7/2/2021)

Hong Kong has a hilly terrain with substantial urban development near hillsides. Coupled with torrential summer rainfall, landslide is a long-term threat that we have to face. Since 2010, the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) has launched the Landslip Prevention and Mitigation Programme (LPMitP) to systematically deal with the landslide risk associated with both natural hillside and man-made slopes. As last year marked the 10th Anniversary of the LPMitP, the GEO specially held the Sustainable Slope Excellence Award to recognise the contribution of the engineering sector in improving slope safety while maintaining the sustainability of the natural ecology. This time, I have invited a colleague from the GEO and two representatives of the consultants to talk to us about the details of their award-winning projects......

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Completion and handover of Hong Kong temporary hospital with support of Central Government (31/1/2021)

With the support of the Central Government, construction of the temporary hospital adjacent to the AsiaWorld-Expo, which is named “North Lantau Hospital Hong Kong Infection Control Centre”, has been successfully completed and handed over to the Hospital Authority (HA). I would like to express my gratitude again to the Central Government, the Guangdong Provincial Government, the Shenzhen Municipal Government and Wuhan experts for their support and guidance. My thanks also go to the project team and thousands of workers for their hard work around the clock to complete the construction of a new hospital from scratch in just four months. This time, I have specially invited Project Director of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), Mr LEUNG Kin-tak, Allen, to talk to us about the layout of the hospital, the design of the wards and the construction details......

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Drainage Services Department’s BiM@D Technology and Training Centre (24/1/2021)

The Government has been encouraging the works departments to better utilise innovation and technology to boost productivity, improve built quality and enhance site safety. As early as 2015, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) started applying Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology to works projects to enhance the design and construction process. In 2018, the DSD set up the BiM@D Technology and Training Centre to further promote digital technology. This time, I have invited an engineer of the DSD to introduce how the centre facilities can help review and improve project planning and design so as to deliver higher-quality wastewater treatment and stormwater drainage services to the public......

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Designing with Heart, Building for the Community (17/1/2021)

The FEHD Skylight Market located in Tin Shui Wai (formerly known as Tin Shui Wai Temporary Public Market) was opened last month, providing residents with a pleasant shopping environment of fresh food provisions. The project only took about a year from planning, funding approval, construction to commissioning, which enabled the public and the tenants to benefit from it early. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to talk about how they have completed the project rapidly and share with us the architectural design features of the market......

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Retirement of Mr LEE Kai-wing, Raymond, Director of Planning (10/1/2021)

Mr LEE Kai-wing, Raymond, Director of Planning (DoP) retired this month. Having served the Government for more than 35 years, Mr LEE has not only witnessed the birth of the Planning Department (PlanD) and participated in the planning of New Development Areas (NDAs). During the course of public engagement, he has also encountered violent protests and bottle-throwing episodes. He encourages colleagues to “be thick-skinned, have high EQ and dare to innovate”. Notwithstanding that many planning issues are controversial in nature, he deeply believes that as long as we can duly conclude our experience and stretch our imagination, we can foster city sustainable development and enhance liveability......

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Director of Architectural Services, Mrs LAM YU Ka-wai, Sylvia, retires (3/1/2021)

The Director of Architectural Services (DArchS), Mrs LAM YU Ka-wai, Sylvia, retired in December last year. In her 30-odd years with the Government, from an architectural graduate to the head of a department, she had handled projects of all scales. In each project, she served the public wholeheartedly and worked closely with her team to respond to people’s views and needs. Seeing more and more women and young people joining the architectural sector, she feels happy and believes that they will carve out a niche for themselves. So, do you want to know what messages the former DArchS has for her colleagues? Let’s hear her talk about it......

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Implementation of the Northern Link project to motivate land development (27/12/2020)

Earlier on, the Government officially embarked on the detailed planning and design work of the Northern Link (NOL), which is a new rail link in the Northwest New Territories. Upon implementation, the NOL will effectively unleash the development potential of the sites along its alignment and drive the development of the areas, bringing about more efficient and concentrated land uses to realise the infrastructure-led and capacity creating planning approach advocated by the current-term Government. The Development Bureau (DEVB) and the Transport and Housing Bureau (THB) have all along been working in close collaboration. This time, I have specially invited the Secretary for Transport and Housing (STH), Mr CHAN Fan, Frank, to talk about the NOL project......

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Further efforts to streamline development control (20/12/2020)

The development process of every development project, including housing development projects, from turning “primitive land” into “spade-ready sites” to the completion of residential developments, is subject to different regulations and requirements under the planning, building control and land administrative regimes, as well as approval by relevant departments. Given the different objectives and loci of these control regimes, over time, there may be overlaps between the regulatory regimes rendering rooms for streamlining......

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Experience sharing on Energizing Kowloon East (13/12/2020)

The Invigorating Island South initiative proposed in the latest Policy Address of the Chief Executive is inspired by the successful experience drawn from the Energizing Kowloon East (EKE) initiative. After nearly a decade of implementation, the EKE initiative has been successful in gradually transforming the old industrial areas and the former airport site in Kowloon East (KE) into an energetic, vibrant and distinctive new core business district (CBD). I have specially invited the former Head of the Energizing Kowloon East Office (EKEO), Ms Brenda AU, to share with us the experience and achievements in taking forward such a large-scale old district revitalisation project.......

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A new non-dredged technology for Tung Chung East reclamation (6/12/2020)

The Tung Chung New Town Extension (TCNTE) is the first new town project via reclamation since 2003, following the completion of the last phase of reclamation of the new town development projects in Tseung Kwan O and Tung Chung. The project has adopted the latest environmentally-friendly reclamation technology – the non-dredged “Deep Cement Mixing” (DCM) method, which reduces impact on water quality and marine ecology nearby and takes a shorter time than the traditional reclamation method to complete the works. Last year, the Under Secretary for Development, Mr LIU Chun-san, paid a visit to the reclamation site in Tung Chung and was briefed by colleagues from the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) on the details of the new reclamation technology and the eco-friendly construction approach......

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Complementing and implementing the Policy Address initiatives (29/11/2020)

The Chief Executive delivered the latest Policy Address last Wednesday, introducing the current-term Government’s work progress and future work plan in terms of land creation. Last year, the Government announced its full acceptance of the recommendations tendered by the Task Force on Land Supply. We are taking forward the recommendations in full stream, and at the same time strengthening and enriching the land supply strategies to meet the demand for housing, economic and social development of the community......

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Exchanging views with construction industry outstanding young persons (22/11/2020)

The Government is proactively promoting “Construction 2.0” by advocating “Innovation”, “Professionalisation” and “Revitalisation” to lead the industry to make changes and enhance its performance, so that it is ready to capitalise on development opportunities and scale new heights. In particular, to achieve sustainable development, the construction industry must attract more young people to join so as to facilitate the passing on of experience and knowledge. Last year, the Construction Industry Council (CIC) organised the first “Construction Industry Outstanding Young Person Award” (CIOYPA) to commend and recognise the achievements of outstanding young practitioners in the industry. For “My Blog” of this week, I have specially invited two young awardees to share the stories of their lives in the construction industry and how they become “men with broad shoulders and brilliant ideas”, shining in their respective fields and positions......

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Construction of the temporary hospital making good progress (15/11/2020)

To cope with another potential wave of the epidemic, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, with the support of the Central Government, has been working to set up an additional community treatment facility in the AsiaWorld-Expo (AWE) and a temporary hospital next to it that will provide more than 800 negative pressure beds and medical related facilities. I would like to express my gratitude again to the Central Government, the Guangdong Provincial Government and the Shenzhen Municipal Government for assisting in the implementation of the two projects. Following the completion of the community treatment facility in early October, the construction of the temporary hospital is also making good progress. It is expected to be topped out by the end of this month and completed in January next year......

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Expansion of Tai Po Water Treatment Works (8/11/2020)

In recent years, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) has been introducing numerous advanced technologies that enhance its water treatment capability to ensure that water is clean and hygienic. The Tai Po Water Treatment Works (WTW), of which the expansion was completed earlier, is no exception. Apart from applying innovative technology for the construction works, the Tai Po WTW has adopted the latest technologies in water quality monitoring and water treatment, and with sustainable features embedded, making the entire water treatment process more environmentally friendly. This time, I have invited a WSD colleague to introduce the special features of the expansion of the WTW and how its operation has been improved ......

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Introduction of new technology for works (1/11/2020)

Innovation and technology development is a dominant global trend. The Government has been encouraging the construction industry to adopt new technologies. Under the ongoing implementation of the Kai Tak Development (KTD), the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) is now constructing a pedestrian subway linking Shing Kai Road and Choi Hung Estate to facilitate pedestrian access between Kai Tak and its neighbourhood. The project has introduced the Rectangular Tunnel Boring Machine (RTBM) technology for the first time to enhance works safety and efficiency. Recently, the boring works have been successfully completed and I have attended the breakthrough ceremony of the subway. In this blog, colleagues of the CEDD will share with us this new technology and how to use it to overcome various challenges of the project......

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Water Intelligent Network — A smart water network (25/10/2020)

To maintain the healthiness of the water distribution network and manage water loss effectively, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) has applied various technologies to handle water main leaks. In particular, the Water Intelligent Network (WIN), which is being established progressively, continuously monitors the operation of the network by utilising advanced technologies for early identification of water leaks and timely follow-ups and repairs. This time, I have invited colleagues from the WSD to talk about the progress, effectiveness and way forward of the WIN project. Meanwhile, the property management industry also shares details on how the WSD assists property owners and building management agents to carry out leak detection and repair works for their private communal water mains......

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Architectural features of Hoi Ha Visitor Centre (18/10/2020)

In the previous post of “My Blog”, I have invited the colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to talk about the architectural features of the Che Kung Temple Sports Centre in Shatin. This time, I have invited two more colleagues from the department to introduce another building with characteristic designs, Hoi Ha Visitor Centre in Sai Kung West Country Park, which will be opened soon. The design concept of the centre originates from the layout of traditional villages and emphasises integration with nature with a view to providing a leisurely and comfortable activity space for visitors......

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Architectural features of Che Kung Temple Sports Centre (11/10/2020)

Located at Sha Tin Tau Road, easily accessible from the nearby MTR Che Kung Temple Station and Chun Shek Bus Terminus, a new sports centre, Che Kung Temple Sports Centre, has just opened for public use since 17 September. A lot of thought has been put into the design of this new sports centre. In particular, architects have deliberately broken the tradition of adopting an all-indoor layout for sports centres. Instead, with transparent layering, the indoor and outdoor areas are connected to integrate with the surrounding landscape. Apart from offering a wide range of recreation and sports facilities, the centre also provides a comfortable place full of nature for neighbourhood residents to hang out and take a break in. This time, I have invited the project team of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to share with us the details of the sports centre......

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Quarantine camps at Penny’s Bay Phase 2 completed (4/10/2020)

In the previous post of “My Blog”, I talked about an additional community treatment facility to be set up at the AsiaWorld-Expo and a temporary hospital to be built next to it with the support of the central government. This week, I will introduce the Government’s work in constructing additional quarantine facilities to enhance Hong Kong’s capability in combating the epidemic. Among them, the quarantine camps at Penny’s Bay Phase 2 have recently been completed. A colleague from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) will share with us the features of the camps and how the team has completed the mission in the fastest manner......

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Setting up of an additional community treatment facility and construction of a temporary hospital (27/9/2020)

As I mentioned recently at a press conference, with the support of the Central People’s Government, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government is to construct a temporary hospital next to the AsiaWorld-Expo (AWE) and to set up an additional community treatment facility in the AWE to help meet the challenges brought by any future changes in the epidemic situation. The construction cost of these facilities will be fully borne by the Mainland. Here, I would like to express again my gratitude to the Central People’s Government, the Guangdong Provincial Government, and the Shenzhen Municipal Government for implementing these two projects. The construction team already started work on 19 September and is making pretty good progress. Most of the bed partitions and negative pressure enclosed cubicles have been properly set up at the additional community treatment facility in the AWE. We will proceed with the setting up of staff facilities, and the installation of electrical and mechanical equipment, plumbing and water pipes. The entire construction project is expected to be completed in about four weeks......

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The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department – sparing no effort to fight the virus (2) (20/9/2020)

In the previous post of “My Blog”, I introduced the all-out support given by the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) to the anti-epidemic efforts to help protect the public in this critical time. This week, colleagues of various positions at the EMSD will continue to share with us how they have joined forces with other departments and stakeholders to complete a series of “seemingly impossible missions”……

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Electrical and Mechanical Services Department — sparing no effort to fight and guard against the virus (1) (13/9/2020)

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 at the beginning of this year, the Government has been highly vigilant. As one of the departments, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) has always carried out its duties faithfully with the utmost determination and perseverance, assisting various departments and public organisations in their provision of professional services to respond to the immediate needs of the community. For two weeks in a row, I will share with you the EMSD’s anti-epidemic efforts here in “My Blog”. This week we have the Director of the Electrical and Mechanical Services, Mr PANG Yiu-hung, to talk about the department’s vital supporting role in our fight against the epidemic. Two other colleagues of the EMSD will share with us their “no ordinary mission” and the challenges they have encountered in the process......

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Advocating harbourfront development on both sides of the Victoria Harbour (6/9/2020)

The Victoria Harbourfront is a unique urban landscape of Hong Kong, featuring our harbourfront promenades which have become popular leisure and “check-in” hotspots on social media. Over the past three years, five kilometres of new harbourfront promenades have been created on both sides of the harbour, including the Shek Tong Tsui to Wan Chai section and the North Point Pier harbourfront areas on Hong Kong Island; and those in the West Kowloon Cultural District, Tsim Sha Tsui and the Tsuen Wan waterfront area. This time, I have specially invited Mr NG Wing-shun, Vincent, who was recently re-appointed as the Chairman of the Harbourfront Commission (HC), to talk about the future harbourfront development, the public engagement plan for harbourfront activities and ways to facilitate the public to come close to the waterfront through a special platform under the epidemic......

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Online seminars on building safety offered by the Buildings Department (30/8/2020)

To promote the message of building safety and timely maintenance, the Buildings Department (BD) of the Development Bureau organises seminars on various topics for the building industry, property owners, property management companies and schools every year. Under the pandemic, however, face-to-face seminars are no longer a suitable option. In view of that, the BD has recently organised its first online seminar to talk about building drainage pipes and share tips on precautionary measures during the typhoon season, which are the topics of interest for the general public and property management practitioners alike. The response was overwhelming……

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Cargo clearance facilities at Heung Yuen Wai Boundary Control Point to open first (23/8/2020)

Infrastructure facilities are important and crucial to what Hong Kong has achieved today. The soon-to-be commissioned Liantang /Heung Yuen Wai Boundary Control Point (BCP), which is the seventh land-based boundary control point located at the boundary between Hong Kong and Shenzhen, is of no exception. In view of the COVID-19 epidemic, both Guangdong and Hong Kong have agreed to open first the cargo clearance facilities for use by cross-boundary goods vehicles from 4pm this Wednesday to further facilitate freight transport. At the initial stage of the commissioning of the BCP, its operating hours for cargo clearance will be from 7am to 10pm daily......

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Launching the Study Sponsorship Scheme to nurture arboriculture practitioners (16/8/2020)

With growing concerns over tree management and maintenance in the society, the Government has recognised the need to nurture more talents with related knowledge and skills. The Development Bureau (DEVB) announced earlier that the Study Sponsorship Scheme (the Scheme) under the Urban Forestry Support Fund (the Fund) is open for application to encourage more youngsters to join the arboriculture and horticulture industry, so as to build up the industry's strength and capability to keep our urban forest healthy, thereby protecting public safety. This time, I have invited a young youngster who has applied for the study sponsorship to share with us his experience in undertaking an arboriculture programme. Meanwhile, a colleague of the Greening, Landscape and Tree Management Section (GLTMS) of the DEVB and a lecturer of an educational institute will talk to us about the details of the Scheme and the training of arboriculture practitioners......

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Staff are reporting for duty to the new short-term positions (9/8/2020)

Last week, I shared with you the Job Creation Scheme launched by the Development Bureau (DEVB) and departments under its purview in connection with the Government’s Anti-epidemic Fund (AEF) to create more short-term positions covering various trades. I also invited two young people who were newly employed to talk about how they felt at the new positions. This time, I have specially invited the Secretary for the Civil Service (SCS), Mr NIP Tak-kuen, Patrick, in charge of co-ordinating the implementation of the scheme by various bureaux and departments, to update us on the progress of the preparatory and recruitment work for the scheme. Also, a young beneficiary under the Scheme, currently working as an assistant engineer for a contractor engaged by the Drainage Services Department (DSD), will share with us her experience in job hunting and her involvement in the public works project......

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Providing more short-term jobs for new colleagues to fill (2/8/2020)

The Government has launched the Job Creation Scheme under the Anti-epidemic Fund (AEF) to create around 30 000 time-limited jobs in the public and private sectors in the coming two years, thereby providing more job opportunities. Among others, new colleagues are reporting for duty in the Development Bureau (DEVB) and departments under its purview. This time, I have invited two young people who have just joined the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), Ms HO Tsz-yan, Katherine, and Mr CHAN Chun-wa, Andy, to share why they joined the Government and what they have experienced in the new positions......

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Constructing quarantine camps using Modular Integrated Construction (MiC) technology (26/7/2020)

With COVID -19 sweeping across the world, the Government has braced itself for the situation right from the beginning. Since the onset of the outbreak, it has taken decisive measures to identify suitable sites to construct quarantine camps within a short time using the innovative Modular Integrated Construction (MiC) technology to meet the demands arising from the epidemic. In completing the mission, colleagues have met many challenges in terms of time, project design, construction and logistics. The construction team has to race against time every day. Usually construction progress is assessed daily, but this time, it is assessed every hour......

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"Heritage Over a Century: Tung Wah Museum and Heritage Conservation" exhibition (19/7/2020)

Since its founding in the late 19th century, the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals (TWGHs) has been offering a range of medical, educational, community, traditional and cultural services such as temple and ritualistic services. It has borne witness to the change of society and time. Given that this year marks the 150th anniversary of the founding of the TWGHs, the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) and the TWGHs have jointly organised the "Heritage Over a Century: Tung Wah Museum and Heritage Conservation" exhibition. More than 70 valuable exhibits are showcased to introduce the work of the TWGHs in the conservation of local history, culture and built heritage, as well as its historical imprints of growing in tandem with Hong Kong society. This time, I have invited the Chairman of the TWGHs, Ms MAN Wing-yee, Ginny, and the Curator (Historical Buildings) of the AMO, Mr NG Chi-wo, to take us on a tour of this themed exhibition......

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Pressing ahead with the implementation of the New Territories Cycle Track Network (12/7/2020)

City dwellers have become more aware of healthy living. Cycling, which integrates exercise and recreation, is most suitable for the whole family to participate in. The Government has been committed to developing a comprehensive cycle track network in the New Territories (NT) to provide a cycle track connecting the east and west of the NT for leisure and recreation purposes in order to improve people’s quality of living. This time, I have invited the colleagues of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to introduce this new cycle track with a total length of about 82 kilometres (km) upon completion and share its design concept and characteristics......

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Water Safety Plan Subsidy Scheme (5/7/2020)

The drinking water supplied by the Water Supplies Department (WSD) undergoes rigorous treatment processes to ensure its quality complies with the Hong Kong Drinking Water Standards. However, drinking water quality could be affected by the internal plumbing systems of buildings; therefore, the WSD has been encouraging property owners and management agents to implement the Water Safety Plan for Buildings (WSPB) at their premises. The Chief Executive also announced in the 2019 Policy Address the launch of the Water Safety Plan Subsidy Scheme (WSPSS) to provide eligible property owners with financial support to encourage them to implement the WSPB. This time, I have invited the colleagues from the WSD to talk about the details of the two plans. A representative of an owners’ corporation (OC) also shares the benefits of participating in the WSPB......

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Anti-epidemic Fund to support construction industry in training (28/6/2020)

Hong Kong’s economy has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and the construction industry is inevitably affected with its unemployment rate continuously rising. New graduates of the relevant professional sectors and assistant professionals who have just completed professional training this year may face difficulties in finding jobs. The Government earlier announced that targeted measures would be swiftly introduced under the Anti-epidemic Fund (AEF) to provide subsidy for employers to create opportunities for both on-the-job and practical training for the industry. This time, I would like to introduce the details of the support measures and invite the Legislative Council (LegCo) members representing the industry to share their expectations on the scheme......

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A good father from the Drainage Services Department (21/6/2020)

Today is Father’s Day, I would like to start by wishing all fathers a Happy Father’s Day! This time, I would like to introduce to you a colleague who is also a good father – Inspector of Works of the Drainage Services Department (DSD), Mr CHUI Wai-yiu. When he is at work, he is responsible for the management of drainage matters and has to be on call at any time. In his spare time, he participates actively in voluntary work and has distributed face masks to the elderly during the epidemic. Apart from sharing with us his work, he would also talk to us about his relationship with his daughter. Being her mentor and her friend, he hopes that she can inspire others with her life experiences, encourage people to offer helping hands and contribute to the society......

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The Landslip Investigation Section of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (14/6/2020)

Earlier on, Hong Kong experienced a series of heavy rainstorms and the Hong Kong Observatory issued landslip warning in the early hours last Saturday (6 June), which remained in force for more than 36 hours, during which 27 reports of landslides were received. The Landslip Investigation Section of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) under the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) immediately examined each report and sent its investigation teams of professional and technical staff to inspect the sites and identify the causes of the landslide incidents. This time, I have particularly invited a colleague from the Landslip Investigation Section to introduce their work to us......

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Preparing for the typhoon season by enhancing the protective capacity (7/6/2020)

During the typhoon season, Hong Kong is susceptible to inclement weather such as persistent heavy rainstorms and typhoons. When typhoons strike, the associated strong winds and low atmospheric pressure may cause the sea level to rise (i.e. storm surges) and huge waves to surpass the seawall (i.e. overtopping waves), posing threats to the low-lying coastal or windy locations. This time, I have invited the colleagues from the Port Works Division of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to introduce how the department plans ahead before the onset of the typhoon season by restoring and strengthening the existing marine facilities to enhance the protective capacity, and also how it raises the efficiency of inspection of marine facilities with new technologies......

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Measures taken by the Construction industry to tackle the epidemic (31/5/2020)

Many industries, including the construction industry, have been affected by the novel coronavirus epidemic. The Government has launched two rounds of the Anti-epidemic Fund (AEF) earlier, offering a total of more than $5.5 billion to support the construction workers and enterprises in strengthening anti-epidemic measures and tiding over the economic hard time brought by the epidemic. At the same time, the Works Group of Departments and the contractors have been committed to minimising the impact of the epidemic on the works progress through project management and rearrangement of work procedures. This time, I have invited a colleague from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to talk about the details while a contractor’s representative will share how the AEF is used to strengthen disease prevention on construction sites.....

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Supporting the use of vacant government sites (2) (24/5/2020)

Last week, I wrote a post on the $1 billion funding scheme launched by the Development Bureau (DEVB) to help non-government organisations (NGOs) pursue basic restoration works on vacant government sites. At present, among the eight approved projects, two have commenced restoration works, which are expected to be completed in the second half of this year. The remaining projects will gradually commence restoration works or advance works, including the detailed design and site investigation, within this year. In this post, a colleague from the DEVB will brief us on how we help the organisations pursue restoration works. Moreover, two responsible persons of a social service organisation will tell us about their plan to turn a vacant village school campus into an integrated community centre......

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Supporting the use of vacant government sites (1) (17/5/2020)

To encourage the use of vacant government sites by non-government organisations (NGOs), the Development Bureau (DEVB) launched a $1 billion funding scheme in February last year to help successful NGOs pursue basic restoration works on vacant government sites to take forward worthy projects for the community. In this post, I have invited a colleague from the DEVB to brief us on the implementation of the scheme. Besides, a successful NGO-applicant will tell us about their plan to turn vacant school premises into a guide dog training school......

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Drainage Services Department’s remote-controlled desilting robot (10/5/2020)

In Hong Kong, the rainy season generally starts in April. In order to further reduce flood risks during rainstorms, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has introduced the “just-in-time clearance” arrangement this year. It has also adopted new technologies in using a new remote-controlled desilting robot for silt clearing works at box culverts to enhance the efficiency of desilting works. This time, I have invited a colleague from the DSD to brief us about the operation and functions of the new robot, and on how it works differently from the traditional desilting method......

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Sail through the Pandemic (3/5/2020)

Over the past three months, the Government and the construction sector have been assisting the enterprises and workers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak to fight the epidemic and find a way out of difficulty. Recently, members of the construction industry have again joined hands with the Construction Industry Council (CIC), the Development Bureau (DEVB), the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), as well as ten professional bodies and trade associations to record a song Sail through the Pandemic together. Frontline practitioners and workers were also invited to participate in the shooting of the music video (MV). It is hoped that the song, with its dynamic and energetic melody and rhythm, will promote mutual support among everyone at this difficult time, so that together we will manage to pull through. This time, I have particularly invited the colleague who writes this song and several industry practitioners to share their feelings and wishes when recording Sail through the Pandemic ......

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New short-term jobs to create job opportunities (26/4/2020)

The Chief Executive has earlier announced a series of new measures under the Anti-epidemic Fund for the purposes of retaining, creating and advancing jobs. Among these measures, it is proposed that around 30 000 time-limited jobs be created in both the public and private sectors in the coming two years to ease the worsening unemployment situation due to the COVID-19 epidemic. The Development Bureau (DEVB) and the departments under its purview will proactively facilitate and implement the creation of about 4 700 short-term jobs covering different trades in the coming period. This time, I have invited colleagues of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), and the Buildings Department (BD) to give us details about some of the short-term jobs to be created......

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Anti-epidemic Fund - continuing support to construction industry (19/4/2020)

As the epidemic of COVID-19 has swept through the world, the Government earlier rolled out the first round of the Anti-epidemic Fund (AEF), which offered over $900 million to support the construction sector in strengthening anti-epidemic measures in order to reduce the risk of viral infection and spreading among construction workers. As at mid-April, about 210 000 frontline workers and 5 200 relevant enterprises have applied for the subsidies and the total amount disbursed exceeded $510 million. On 8 April, the Chief Executive announced a new round of relief measures, among which over $4.3 billion will be further set aside to help the construction sector tide over the economic hard time brought by the epidemic......

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Ecological Study for Pui O, Shui Hau, Tai O and Neighbouring Areas (12/4/2020)

As Lantau is endowed with a wide variety of natural habitats, rich biodiversity and species of animals and plants with conservation value, the Government attaches great importance to its conservation. The Ecological Study for Pui O, Shui Hau, Tai O and Neighbouring Areas was initiated two years ago to evaluate the existing ecological situation of Lantau and to explore appropriate conservation measures. In early March, I invited a colleague from the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) under the Civil Engineering and Development Department and an ecology consultant to Pui O to share with us the objective, progress and preliminary results of the study.....

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The evolution of mapping technologies in Hong Kong (5/4/2020)

For most of us, the word “map“ may conjure up images of search engines on personal computers, tablets or smart phones, but hardly do we know that it has taken as long as half a century for the maps of Hong Kong to transform from paper format to digital format on the electronic platform. Today, I have specifically invited a colleague from the Survey and Mapping Office (SMO) of the Lands Department (LandsD) to journey through the development of our mapping technologies and map products with us, and show us how the maps have witnessed the changes of our city......

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Exploring Tung O Ancient Trail (29/3/2020)

The Government is committed to striking a proper balance between development and conservation needs so that members of the public can live in a better and more comfortable living environment. Endowed with splendid mountains and natural shoreline, Lantau is rich in natural and cultural assets. Among others, the Tung O Ancient Trail in the northwest, once an important passage for villagers to commute between Tung Chung and Tai O, has many historical imprints along its route. Early this month, I specifically invited a colleague from the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department and an expert in heritage conservation to the Tung O Ancient Trail to introduce us to its history, as well as the cultural conservation efforts and village revitalisation works planned to be conducted by the SLO......

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Tracing Survey Markings (22/3/2020)

In the central and western parts of the Hong Kong Island, there are a number of “City of Victoria boundary stones”, which were erected over a hundred years ago. At the mountain peaks in our city, there are triangulation stations — concrete cylindrical pillars painted black and white. Moreover, there are quite a number of survey markings on the streets, around building corners or along hiking trails used for land boundary delineation or survey positioning across Hong Kong. For this post, I have invited a colleague from the Survey and Mapping Office (SMO) of the Lands Department (LandsD) to take us on a tour to trace these markings scattered around our city, including boundary stones from the early days of Hong Kong and survey control points currently used for mapping and land boundary survey. He will also brief us on their history and uses......

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Electrical and Mechanical Services Department and innovation and technology enterprises to fight the virus together (15/3/2020)

The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) set up the E&M InnoPortal in 2018 to match the service needs of government departments and public organisations with local start-ups’ deliverables, as well as providing suitable venues to field-test projects and validate their effectiveness and performance. Facing the challenges brought by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, the EMSD has particularly launched an anti-epidemic thematic page on the platform to liaise with innovation and technology (I&T) enterprises for the development of new technology projects on fighting and curbing of the epidemic. This time, I have invited the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services (DEMS), Mr SIT Wing-hang, Alfred, to introduce two I&T solutions to facilitate our understanding of the department’s efforts in fighting the virus together with the I&T sector......

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Completion of restoration works for Duddell Street Steps and Gas Lamps (8/3/2020)

Many of us may still remember, during the onslaught of super typhoon Mangkhut on Hong Kong in September 2018, a large wall-growing tree at Duddell Street in Central collapsed and damaged the adjacent declared monument over a century old – the Duddell Street Steps and Gas Lamps. After more than a year of hard work by the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) of the Development Bureau (DEVB), together with the Highways Department and Towngas, the steps have now been restored to their previous appearance and the gas lamps have been relit. This time, I have invited my colleagues from the AMO to talk about the restoration process and challenges involved......

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Enhancing the management of works projects to promote the continuous development of the construction industry (1/3/2020)

As mentioned in the latest Budget, the Government continues to invest in infrastructure projects. In the coming years, the annual capital works investment will reach $100 billion on average. The increasing construction volume has brought opportunities and challenges to the construction industry. All along, the Development Bureau (DEVB) has led the industry to implement Construction 2.0 for promoting its sustainable development by advocating innovation, professionalism and revitalisation. Among the initiatives, the Centre of Excellence for Major Project Leaders (CoE), established in July last year, is to equip public officers with leadership skills for the delivery of public works projects. We are also actively promoting the digitisation of the works supervision system to enhance the standard and efficiency of works supervision. This time, I have invited Principal Government Engineer, Mr KWONG Ka-sing, John, of the DEVB to talk about the work of the Government in enhancing the management of works projects......

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Anti-epidemic Fund to support the construction industry (23/2/2020)

Many industries in Hong Kong have been affected by the novel coronavirus epidemic, and the construction industry is no exception. The Government has announced the establishment of the Anti-epidemic Fund to enhance the city’s capability in combating the epidemic and to provide assistance to sectors or industries and their employees who are hard hit by the epidemic. The Fund has set aside $710 million to support the construction industry by providing it with extra resources to enhance anti-epidemic measures in construction sites and offices, and to enhance personal protective measures among workers. The subsidy will be disbursed through the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and the application process will be made as simple as possible, to ensure fast and accurate disbursement to enterprises and in-service construction workers......

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Ensuring drinking water safety in Hong Kong (16/2/2020)

Water is an essential element of our daily life. To ensure that it is clean and wholesome, all raw water in Hong Kong undergoes rigorous treatment and disinfection processes at the water treatment works of the Water Supplies Department (WSD) before being supplied for public consumption. This time, I have particularly invited the Chief Waterworks Chemist of the WSD, Mr KWOK Yau-ting, Kelvin, to talk about the water treatment processes, and explain how water treatment works secure water safety and shoulder the responsibilities to provide a safe and reliable water supply......

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Successful conclusion of the Hong Kong 2020 International Urban Forestry Conference (9/2/2020)

The Hong Kong 2020 International Urban Forestry Conference, the first-ever international conference on urban forestry organised by the Development Bureau (DEVB), was held at the JC Cube Auditorium, Tai Kwun, Central on 16 and 17 January. Under the theme of “Challenges and Opportunities of Urban Greening in High-density Cities”, the two-day conference invited more than 20 local, overseas and mainland speakers and attracted over 600 professionals and students to share views and experience on matters related to urban forestry. This time, I have specially invited the Head of Greening and Landscape Office (H/GLO) of the DEVB, Ms Vina WONG, to give you the conference details……

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The Yuk Hui Temple in Wan Chai (2/2/2020)

The Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) under the Development Bureau (DEVB) is an office dedicated to heritage conservation and education. It strives to protect and conserve the archaeological and built heritage of Hong Kong, and to enhance the public’s awareness, understanding and appreciation of our cultural legacy. I have written several blog posts to share the work of the AMO and introduce various historic buildings in the territory. Earlier, the Yuk Hui Temple in Wan Chai has been declared as a monument. This time, I have specially invited a colleague from the AMO to introduce to us the history and architectural features of the old temple ……

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Celebrating Lunar New Year with “old pals” (26/1/2020)

Today is the second day of the Lunar New Year. First of all, let me and colleagues of the Development Bureau (DEVB) wish you a very happy and prosperous year ahead! On 22 January, guided by the Drainage Services Department Volunteer Team (DSDVT) and senior volunteers of the Sheng Kung Hui, I visited a neighbourhood elderly centre with Mr Liu Chun-san, the Under Secretary, and Mr Allen Fung, the Political Assistant, to chat with the elderly and celebrating the Lunar New Year together......

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Hong Kong Museum of Art after renovation (19/1/2020)

Hong Kong Museum of Art (HKMoA), the oldest public museum in the city, has recently reopened after renovation, presenting visitors with a refreshing interior and exterior. This time, I have specially invited two colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to talk about how to give the museum a makeover to provide visitors with more open views and enhance its accessibility. The makeover has also shortened the distance between works of art and people as well as the environment......

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Hong Kong hosts the Construction Innovation Expo for the first time (12/1/2020)

The Government has all along been encouraging the construction industry to proactively adopt innovation and technology in recent years. The first large-scale Construction Innovation Expo (CIExpo) held in Hong Kong earlier has attracted more than 23 800 visitors. The CIExpo featured four key themes with in-depth exploration of Offsite Construction, Robotics and Automation, Digital Solutions, as well as Advanced Technologies and Materials. This time, let me introduce the content of the CIExpo and invite the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and departmental colleagues to share their application of innovation and technology......

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Land Registry’s e-Alert Service – A 4-win service initiative (5/1/2020)

This is my first blog post in 2020. I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all good health and every success in the new year. I have once introduced in my blog the Land Registry (LR)’s “Property Alert” service which enables property owners to remain vigilant of their properties easily. However, do you know that the LR and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) have jointly launched an e-Alert Service for banks to help them enhance their credit risk management in mortgage lending and to safeguard the stability of the banking system in Hong Kong. Today, I have specially invited the Land Registrar, Ms CHEUNG Mei-chu, Doris, and the Head (Banking Supervision) (Credit Risk) of HKMA, Mr YUNG Wai-sun, Sunny, to explain the service details......

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A harbourfront promenade with special features along the way (29/12/2019)

I wrote in My Blog last Sunday that the promenade between Shek Tong Tsui and the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) had been opened to the public, and it is the longest promenade of the Victoria Harbour so far. Today, I will continue to exchange views on the design of waterfront public open spaces with Mr NG Wing-shun, Vincent, Chairman of the Harbourfront Commission, and Mr HO Man-yiu, Ivan, Chairman of the Task Force on Harbourfront Developments on Hong Kong Island. We will also listen to views and suggestions from the public and tourists on our harbourfront facilities......

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Adopting an incremental approach to develop the Victoria Harbour promenade (22/12/2019)

The harbourfront promenade connecting Tamar and the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) was officially open to the public earlier. Today, I have invited Mr NG Wing-shun, Vincent, Chairman of the Harbourfront Commission, and Mr HO Man-yiu, Ivan, Chairman of the Task Force on Harbourfront Developments on Hong Kong Island, to visit the promenade and share with us their experience in developing the new harbourfront. We also chatted with two young artists about the artworks they tailor-made for the promenade and the inspirations behind them......

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First Modular Integrated Construction residential project (15/12/2019)

As technology advances, the construction industry continues to upgrade with the times to make the building process faster and safer. Earlier, my colleagues and I went to inspect Hong Kong’s first public works project adopting Modular Integrated Construction (MiC), – the Disciplined Services Quarters for the Fire Services Department at Pak Shing Kok, Tseung Kwan O. It is also the first residential project constructed with this innovative construction technology under the co-operation of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) and a contractor. There, we were briefed by the building professionals on the building process, project details and progress......

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The “living seawalls” (8/12/2019)

I introduced the latest progress of near-shore reclamation of the Tung Chung New Town Extension in My Blog some time earlier, and mentioned that the project adopted eco-shorelines for the first time in the extension area with an objective to further conserve the ecological habitats and enhance biodiversity. The Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) is working in partnership with The University of Hong Kong (HKU) to conduct a feasibility study by introducing eco-shoreline features at the seawalls in Sai Kung, Lung Kwu Tan in Tuen Mun and Ma Liu Shui in Sha Tin for field trials. This time, I have invited a colleague from the CEDD and a professor from the School of Biological Sciences at HKU to introduce the details and initial findings of the study......

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Stargazing facility in Sai Wan, Sai Kung (1/12/2019)

Sai Kung has always been a hot spot for the public to stargaze. Upon request from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD), the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) has constructed a stargazing facility on an abandoned campsite located between Sai Wan and Ham Tin Wan in Sai Kung for visitors to enjoy stargazing by lying down leisurely and comfortably. This time, I have invited two colleagues from the ArchSD to introduce the architectural design and features of the facility to facilitate our understanding of the design concepts of the project team......

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Task force on “waste reduction at source” at reservoirs (24/11/2019)

Currently there are 17 impounding reservoirs in Hong Kong, in which a variety of living organisms such as algae, zooplankton, and fish can be found. These living organisms grow naturally in a state of ecological balance. However, the water quality of some of the reservoirs have been affected by an excessive growth of algae. Therefore, to ensure an ecological balance and to maintain good water quality, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) maintains a certain quantity of fish, which feed on algae, in such reservoirs by stocking fish fry into them regularly. This time, I have invited colleagues from the WSD to tell us more about the “fish army” and the work of “reservoir fishermen” at the reservoirs......

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Integrating rivers into communities (17/11/2019)

In recent years, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has been carrying out improvement works to enhance the drainage capability of rivers. In parallel, efforts are being made to integrate rivers into their surroundings by introducing green elements and beautifying the scenery so as to foster a water-friendly culture. In this year’s Policy Address, the Chief Executive has proposed to develop and take forward the concept of “Rivers in the City”. This time, I have invited two engineers of the DSD to talk to us about upcoming river revitalisation projects, and explain how to enhance connectivity between rivers and communities through the introduction of water bodies revitalisation facilities.....

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International Water Association Asia Pacific Regional Group Conference (10/11/2019)

The 8th International Water Association (IWA) Asia Pacific Regional Group Conference and Exhibition was recently held in Hong Kong under the theme of “Smart Solutions for Water Resilience”. The conference has attracted experts and delegates from more than 30 countries and regions to exchange views on issues of water resources policy and management, smart water supply, sustainable development and climate change. This time, I have specially invited the Chairman of the Organising Committee (OC) of this international conference, Mr CHAU Sai-wai, Deputy Director of Water Supplies (DD of WS), and the Vice Chairman, Mr MAK Ka-wai, Deputy Director of Drainage Services (DD of DS), to give you the conference details......

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Tung Chung New Town Extension Project in good progress (3/11/2019)

The Government has been planning to further develop the Tung Chung New Town (TCNT) into a comprehensively planned new town with a larger population capacity and adequate local and regional community facilities. Earlier, the joint subcommittees of the Lantau Development Advisory Committee (LanDAC) and I visited the site of near-shore reclamation of the TCNT Extension (TCNTE). There, we were briefed by the Head of the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO), Mr FONG Hok-shing, Michael, and his colleagues on the planning of the extension area and the latest works progress......

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Planning Department Outreach Programme (27/10/2019)

Hong Kong is a densely populated city. The question of how to shape our high-density city into a quality living and working environment, to uplift liveability and strike a right balance on land utilisation to meet various needs of society makes town planning a really challenging task. As public participation and support form an integral part of the town planning process, the Planning Department (PlanD) Outreach Programme has been held for years to enhance interest of the public, particularly our younger generations, in the surrounding environment and town planning through various different activities, and encourage active participation in district planning processes. This time I have invited a colleague from the PlanD to tell us more about the Outreach Programme......

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Exercising public power to resume land for public housing development (20/10/2019)

The Chief Executive has identified housing and land supply as the top priorities in her latest Policy Address, proposing a Government-led approach for the planning of land use and infrastructure and to resume the required private land for established public purposes, so that members of the public can see that the Government is using its full strength to develop land in the short, medium and long term for our people. The Development Bureau will press ahead with the work on this front with our utmost endeavours by intensifying the planning efforts in three aspects. Our specific planning objective is to resume the land wholly for public housing, “Starter Homes” and related infrastructure development. Here, I would like to talk about the various work that are in the pipeline......

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“E&M Go!” (13/10/2019)

Electrical and mechanical (E&M) facilities can be found everywhere in Hong Kong. With a considerable number of public works projects and private construction projects slated for completion in the coming years, there will be a keen demand for E&M talents. Recently, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) and the industry organised the annual “E&M Go!” Orientation Ceremony to welcome young trainees and encourage them to realise their potential and aspirations in the industry. This time, I have specifically invited the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services (DEMS), Mr SIT Wing-hang, Alfred, to introduce the purpose and details of the event and share with us the department’s work in nurturing E&M talents......

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Advanced technologies to rehabilitate pipes (6/10/2019)

There are more than 4 500 kilometres of underground stormwater drains and sewers across Hong Kong. Many of those in the old districts have been in use for over 30 years. The sewers, in particular, are more prone to ageing and deterioration due to prolonged exposure to corrosive gases brought by sewage. Since earlier this year, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has gradually rehabilitated the high-risk underground pipes by adopting a pipe repair method that requires no excavation of pipe trenches or road surfaces in order to alleviate inconvenience caused to the public during the works. This time, I have invited a DSD colleague to introduce the use of this advanced trenchless technology for rehabilitation works to reduce the risk of water overflow.......

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Keep on committing resources to ensure building safety (29/9/2019)

To cater for a growing population and support economic development, a large number of building developments were completed in the 1970s to 80s. According to the statistics of the Buildings Department, as of end-2018, over 6 800 of the 35 400 private domestic buildings in Hong Kong were aged 50 years or above. In the face of Hong Kong’s ageing buildings stock, it is an important livelihood issue to encourage owners to carry out proper building repairs and maintenance to ensure building safety and enhance the living environment......

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First outstanding female apprentice of the Water Supplies Department (22/9/2019)

To ensure the provision of a reliable and quality water supply service, the frontline work of the Water Supplies Department (WSD) is very crucial and our artisans have played an indispensable role. Since 2015 WSD has run an apprentice training scheme to nurture artisans, recruiting about ten Technician Trainee II (Waterworks) each year and offering them a series of on-the-job training. Early this year, the first female apprentice under the scheme, Ms KAO Fuk-yee, Koey, received the Outstanding Apprentices Award by the Vocational Training Council, giving the department a shot in the arm for its dedication to training young people to join the industry. This time, I have particularly invited her to share with us her training, work experience and future expectations......

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VR technology nurtures lift technicians (15/9/2019)

Hong Kong is a built-up area that abounds with skyscrapers, in which the lifts carry people up and down every day. Proper periodic examination and maintenance are important to ensure the safe operation of lifts. The Government has earlier launched the Lift Modernisation Subsidy Scheme (LIMSS) to subsidise building owners in need to enhance lift safety. Meanwhile, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) has also collaborated with the Vocational Training Council (VTC) and the Lift & Escalator Contractors Association (LECA) to strengthen the training of talents. This time, I have invited a colleague of the EMSD and the representatives of the VTC and the industry to introduce how innovation and technology can be used to support training and attract more young people to join the industry......

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Creative architectural design for the Eastern Community Green Station (8/9/2019)

What springs to your mind when a recycling station is mentioned? Perhaps it reminds you of a rubbish collection point. But have you noticed the community green stations built in various districts in recent years that feature simplistic design, visual appeal and functionality? They also provide space for local residents to participate personally in waste reduction and recycling and promote environmental collaboration among communities. This time, I have invited two colleagues of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) to introduce to us the Eastern Community Green Station (CGS), one of the green stations they were involved in building, and talk about its design concept and architectural features......

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Summer interns of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (1/9/2019)

The Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) organises a summer internship programme every year, giving post-secondary students in different professional fields an opportunity to put what they have learned into practice and accumulate work experience. At the same time, the interns will know more about the department’s daily operations and major areas of work. This year, the CEDD has recruited about 40 students under the programme for six to eight weeks of summer internship. This time, I have invited the Head of the Sustainable Lantau Office (SLO) of the CEDD, Mr FONG Hok-shing, Michael, to have a chat with three interns attached to his office about their internship and experience......

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Pier improvement projects (25/8/2019)

The Government has earlier put forward a Pier Improvement Programme (PIP) to improve the facilities of public piers in remote areas to facilitate the public and tourists to access outing destinations and natural heritage sites, and to respond to local requests for meeting the basic needs of villagers that rely on boats as their main transport mode and supporting fishermen’s operation. If funding is approved within this year, the first project under the PIP can start by year’s end at the earliest. This time, I have invited a colleague from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to tell us about the details......

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Secondary students to become town planners (18/8/2019)

The Planning Department (PlanD) organises the City Gallery Summer Planning School – “Be a Town Planner” programme during this summer holiday. A wide range of activities are arranged for about 200 secondary and primary students for them to learn about the development and planning of Hong Kong. Themed on “Urban Renewal”, this year’s programme is jointly organised by the PlanD and the Urban Renewal Authority (URA). Lectures, field studies and workshops are held for students to learn about the strategy to urban renewal. Here, I have invited colleagues from the PlanD and the URA to talk about the aims and details of the programme, and one of the secondary students will share with us his feelings about the programme......

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Development and conservation of Lok Ma Chau Loop (11/8/2019)

In recent years, the Government has introduced various policies to support the innovation and technology industry, one of which is the development of the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation and Technology Park (the Park) at the Lok Ma Chau Loop (the Loop). The infrastructure works of the Loop are undertaken by the Development Bureau and the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD). The Under Secretary for Development, Mr LIU Chun-san, and the Political Assistant to the Secretary for Development, Mr FUNG Ying-lun, Allen, went to the Loop earlier with two secondary school students who had participated in the “Be a Government Official for a Day” programme. They were briefed by the colleagues of the CEDD on the works progress and how the natural environment could be conserved while development takes place......

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Centre of Excellence for Major Project Leaders set up (4/8/2019)

The Government has been implementing public works projects in an orderly manner to improve people's quality of living, enhance Hong Kong's long-term competitiveness and promote economic development. The Development Bureau (DEVB) established the Centre of Excellence for Major Project Leaders (CoE) earlier to offer a high-level leadership development programme to senior public officers with a view to enhancing the overall performance of public works projects. This time, I have invited the Permanent Secretary for Development (Works) (PSW), Mr LAM Sai-hung, to introduce the purpose and details of setting up the CoE......

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H6 CONET – A place for the community that can be shared and enjoyed by the public (28/7/2019)

Urban renewal is never merely about the transformation of the hardware, such as redeveloping old buildings and improving the built environment. Instead, it is more important to let those living in the neighbourhood embrace the uniqueness and vibrancy of the vicinity and promote the community’s long-term development. Recently, I visited H6 CONET, a community space operated by the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) in the bustling Central district, with two secondary school students taking part in the “Be a Government Official for a Day” programme. We were briefed by colleagues of the URA on how they integrate a district’s local characteristics and cultural landscape in undertaking urban renewal development projects to create an environment with distinct local characteristics and enhance the community’s sense of belonging......

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Young Lo Pan inherit construction wisdom (21/7/2019)

Last Monday (15 July) was Lo Pan Patron’s Day. I was invited to officiate at the presentation ceremony of the Young Lo Pan Award. Apart from promoting the spirit of Lo Pan, the Master of Crafts, the ceremony also aimed to recognise young practitioners with outstanding performance in the construction industry, so as to foster their sense of belonging to the industry and encourage more young people to join. At the ceremony, the atmosphere was vibrant and full of energy thanks to the attendance of young people who are new blood in the industry. In particular, I have invited two young awardees to share stories of how they joined the industry and details of their work......

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Restoration of river ecology to bring back flickering fireflies (14/7/2019)

The Drainage Services Department (DSD) has implemented a pilot project on biodiversity improvement of drainage channels by rehabitating river habitats to bring back fluttering fireflies of rare species. Recently, the DSD together with the Firefly Conservation Foundation and a group of secondary school students visited one of the pilot sites, Kwan Tei River in Fanling, to release firefly larvae to the river channel where they would continue to grow and reproduce. This time, I have particularly invited a colleague of the DSD and the chairman of the foundation, to share with us the work of river rehabitation and its results, as well as the journey of how fireflies return to nature......

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Living in safe buildings to stay healthy and happy (7/7/2019)

Hong Kong is a high-density city, conditions of buildings are premised upon joint community efforts. On my recent visit to the Buildings Department (BD) to learn more about its services and work, I was briefed by colleagues on how building safety messages are promoted to the public through various channels. Among others, the Building Safety Week is the BD's annual major public education and publicity event. Concluded successfully in May, the Building Safety Week 2019 has heightened the awareness of the importance of building safety in both the community and the construction industry through a series of diversified activities, encouraging them to foster a building care culture together......

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3D Planning and Design System (30/6/2019)

Hong Kong is a high-density city, it would be difficult to have a clear grasp of the actual environment if city planning is simply based on 2D plans. With the 3D modelling techniques reaching maturity in recent years, the Planning Department (PlanD) launched the 3D Planning and Design System (3DPDS) last year. By means of a 3D photo-realistic model, the cityscape of Hong Kong is visualised in great detail with the 3DPDS, which can also facilitate town planners to design the future city blueprint for Hong Kong by integrating existing planning information. Here, I have invited the Chief Town Planner (Information System and Land Supply) of the PlanD, Mr LIU Kam Ming, Silas, to tell us about the development process and the main functions of the 3DPDS......

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Haw Par Mansion turned into music school (23/6/2019)

After revitalisation, the 83-year-old Haw Par Mansion has been open for public visit since April this year. As one of the projects under Batch III of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme), the Haw Par Mansion has now been revitalised into a music school called “Haw Par Music Farm”. Earlier, during my district visit, I made a point of visiting the place and had a chat with the former owner of Haw Par Mansion and founder of the Aw Boon Haw Foundation, Ms AW Sian, Sally. Aw Boon Haw Foundation is the operator of Haw Par Music Farm. In addition, I have invited the Executive Director, Project Development of Haw Par Music Farm, Mr Roger WU, to introduce to us the mansion that combines Chinese and Western architectural styles......

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Smart sensing technology to monitor tree stability (16/6/2019)

Every year before the onset of wet season, tree management departments will complete Tree Risk Assessments (TRAs) and implement appropriate risk mitigation measures to protect tree health and public safety. In recent years, the Government has launched several pilot schemes to explore the use of technology in tree management to enhance its quality and efficiency. This time, I have invited a colleague of the Greening, Landscape and Tree Management Section (GLTMS) of the Development Bureau (DEVB) to talk about tree inspections before wet season. I have also invited Dr WONG Man-sing, Charles, Associate Professor of the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), to introduce how to apply smart sensing technology to monitor tree stability......

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Unbeatable Heroine of CEDD (9/6/2019)

The Dragon Boat Festival has just passed but the drumbeats can still be heard. In recent years, some government departments have formed teams to participate in dragon boat races. Dragon boating not only improves colleagues’ physical fitness, but also fosters team spirit and cooperation among them. This time, I have invited a female player from the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) to share her feelings as a member of the department’s dragon boat team, and show us how to apply Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques to landslide prevention and mitigation......

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Streamlining the approval process of development proposals (2/6/2019)

At present, every private development project is subject to regulation by certain development control parameters imposed by the Planning Department (PlanD), the Lands Department (LandsD) and the Buildings Department (BD). Given the different objectives and loci of the control regimes and their evolution over time, the approval process of development projects has eventually become complicated. The Chief Executive announced in her Policy Address in 2017 that a steering group would be set up under the Development Bureau (DEVB) to explore how best to consolidate and rationalise the standards and definitions adopted by different departments in scrutinizing development projects such that the approval process can be streamlined. The first batch of streamlining arrangements came into force officially in mid-May this year. In order to let the industry gain a better understanding of the relevant technical details, an industry seminar was conducted earlier and the response was encouraging......

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Hong Kong Garden at International Horticultural Exhibition showcases the unique charm of our city (26/5/2019)

The opening ceremony of the 2019 Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition (the Expo) was held in Yanqing, Beijing recently, with the participation of as many as 110 countries and international organisations. China’s 31 provincial-level cities, as well as Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan have also set up their exhibition zones. This time, I have invited two colleagues from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) who are responsible for the planning, design and construction of the Hong Kong Garden to introduce us the design concept and architectural features......

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Heung Yuen Wai Highway opens on May 26 (19/5/2019)

The Liantang/Heung Yuen Wai Boundary Control Point (BCP), currently under construction, is the seventh land-based control point (Note) on the Hong Kong-Shenzhen boundary. Besides the BCP buildings, Hong Kong and Shenzhen have each constructed their own connecting road to link the new BCP with their road network. The connecting road on the Hong Kong side named Heung Yuen Wai Highway, undertaken by the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), will be opened to the public on May 26. This time, I have invited three CEDD colleagues to talk about the details of the Heung Yuen Wai Highway as well as the challenges during the course of construction……

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Mother’s Day Series (2): Senior Engineer Ms LAM Sze-mei, Janet, of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (12/5/2019)

Today is Mother’s Day. First of all, I would like to wish all great mothers a Happy Mother’s Day! Last week, I shared with you the story of a Geotechnical Engineer. This week, I would like to introduce another colleague and a good mother, Ms LAM Sze-mei, Janet. As a Senior Electrical and Mechanical Engineer of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), she is responsible for leading more than 200 colleagues of Hong Kong Island to carry out maintenance and repair of electrical and mechanical (E&M) facilities in government buildings. She also performs standby duty around the clock to handle emergency incidents. She is going to share with us her daily work and her own feelings as a working mum......

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Mother’s Day Series (1): Geotechnical Engineer Ms TING Sui-man (5/5/2019)

As it is Mother’s Day next Sunday, this week and the next I would like to introduce to you two colleagues who are also good mothers. At work, they have to be ready anytime to handle whatever emergencies come their way. They are just as good as men. Family-wise, they spend all their time after work with their children, taking good care of them. Here, let’s show our support for all working mothers......

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Regulation of amusement ride safety (28/4/2019)

Many people love to visit theme parks to go on the exciting and thrilling amusement rides for the sheer sensation of speed and centrifugal forces. In the carnival held earlier along the Central Harbourfront, there were different kinds of amusement rides available for the public to “have the fullest fun”. You may wish to know that, five months before the opening of the carnival, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) had in fact started the vetting process of the amusement rides applications to ensure a fun and safe experience for visitors. This time, I have invited two colleagues from the EMSD to introduce how the department oversees the inspection and maintenance of the rides to ensure public safety......

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“Vertical Fabric: Density in Landscape" Architecture Exhibition (21/4/2019)

Hong Kong is a high-density city, the unique urban landscape of which is formed by many high-rise developments. Recently, some tower models of imitated skyscrapers have been installed along Edinburgh Place. I bet they have commanded your attention when you walk past the Central waterfront. Following the success of the 16th Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition – Hong Kong Exhibition last year, the models shown at the exhibition have been brought back to different places in Hong Kong for a Response Exhibition. Featuring 116 tower models, the curatorial team showcases Hong Kong’s high-density architecture and explores the potential of design and planning for diversity within spatial constraints. Here, I have invited the chief curator of the exhibition and a Senior Town Planner of the Planning Department (PlanD) to share with us the characteristics of the exhibition......

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Revitalisation and development of the rear portion of the Cattle Depot (14/4/2019)

Adjacent to the old district of To Kwa Wan is the Ex-Ma Tau Kok Animal Quarantine Depot, commonly known as the Cattle Depot, the only surviving pre-war cattle slaughterhouse in Hong Kong. The front portion of the Cattle Depot has been revitalised as the Cattle Depot Artists Village and become a popular place frequented by people interested in culture and art. The rear portion of the Cattle Depot, currently undergoing revitalisation, will be developed into the Cattle Depot Art Park. The works are expected to be completed in the middle of this year. This time, I have invited a colleague from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), who is responsible for the project design to walk us through the highlights of the art park......

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Making the most of community wisdom to build a harbourfront for all (7/4/2019)

Apart from pursuing for economic excellence, the Hong Kong community nowadays places equal emphasis on the strive for better quality of life and making our city more liveable than ever. The Central Harbourfront is climbing up the chart of top leisure destinations for both the public and visitors recently, with different activities taking place one after another, turning our harbourfront into a lively place. With the harbourfront areas on both sides of Victoria harbour gradually released for public enjoyment, we are looking forward to exploring the infinite possibilities to co-create more and more public space with our boundless creativity. With this aspiration in mind, I have invited Mr NG Wing-shun, Vincent, the Chairperson of the Harbourfront Commission (HC), for a stroll along the harbourfront and talk about the public views and visions on the strategies of harbourfront enhancement......

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Gerontechnology products in the community (31/3/2019)

Hong Kong is facing an ageing population and an increasing demand for elderly services. Gerontechnology is a combination of elderly services and innovative technology. By developing new, tailor-made products for the elderly, it can help improve the lives of elderly persons and reduce the burden and stress of carers and nursing staff. Earlier, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) and the Hong Kong Council of Social Service (HKCSS) jointly held the Gerontech Youth Challenge to encourage youngsters to use their creativity as well as knowledge in the technology and electrical and mechanical (E&M) fields to come up with ideas on products that are friendly to the elderly in community care, institutional care and home care……

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Lantau Tomorrow Vision (24/3/2019)

Hong Kong is facing an acute shortage of land supply. The Government agrees with the Task Force on Land Supply that there is no single option that can solve the land problem. We will continue to adopt a multi-pronged approach to increase land supply. The Lantau Tomorrow Vision (the Vision) has put forward a proposal to develop artificial islands near Kau Yi Chau (KYC) to make available larger pieces of land, thereby making possible the planning for sites needed by the society and meeting the development needs of various sectors of Hong Kong. On Tuesday, the Government will consult the Panel on Development of the Legislative Council (LegCo) on conducting a detailed planning and engineering study that focuses on the KYC Artificial Islands of around 1 000 hectares (ha) and the related studies on strategic transport infrastructure. Here, I would like to respond to some queries raised by the public recently......

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Enhanced training of construction workers (17/3/2019)

The construction industry has been playing a vital role in promoting Hong Kong’s economic and social development. The overall construction expenditure of the public and private sectors in the next few years is forecast to exceed $300 billion per year in Hong Kong, indicating a keen demand for skilled workers. Over the years, the Construction Industry Council (CIC) has been proactively offering training for potential young entrants and in-service workers. The Hong Kong Construction Industry Trade Testing Centre, under the CIC, in Aberdeen provides advanced trade testing services for workers to acquire recognised qualifications to enhance their professional status. This time, I have invited examiners from the CIC to give us a detailed introduction......

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Smart city digital infrastructure (10/3/2019)

A sound and comprehensive infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, communication facilities is critical to the establishment of an efficient and liveable city. Likewise, quality digital infrastructure is essential for Hong Kong’s smart city development. The Financial Secretary has announced in the 2019-20 Budget that the Government will earmark $300 million to expedite the development of the Common Spatial Data Infrastructure (CSDI) for consolidation, exchange, sharing and innovative application of geospatial data and make available the high-quality three-dimensional (3D) digital maps of the whole territory in phases. Here, I have invited Mr CHAN Chung-ching, Thomas, Director of Lands, to introduce the Lands Department’s (LandsD’s) work on these two fronts and the way forward......

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Magistracy turned into the HKFYG Leadership Institute (3/3/2019)

Previously, I took you to visit a number of the revitalised historic building projects. Recently, a facelift has been given to yet another former magistracy. The Former Fanling Magistracy is one of the projects under Batch III of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme) of the Development Bureau. With the restoration completed at the end of last year, the building has been transformed into the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups (HKFYG) Leadership Institute, due to officially open at the end of March. Earlier, I visited the North District and made a tour of the facilities of the institute. There, two youth cultural ambassadors doubling as docents took us through various areas to see how a solemn court building has morphed into a youth centre......

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Striving for Multi-pronged Land Supply (24/2/2019)

On 31 December, 2018, the Task Force on Land Supply (Task Force) submitted its report to the Government. Once again I would like to express my wholehearted thanks to the Task Force for its effort on increasing land supply and forging consensus in the community over the past year and a half. In particular, the five-month public engagement exercise conducted under an all-embracing, cross-sectoral and multi-channel approach has heightened public awareness of issues of land resources and effectively engaged the public in discussions on and prioritisation of different land supply options. The Government decided to give full acceptance to the Task Force’s recommendations on land supply strategy and eight land supply options worthy of priority studies and implementation after detailed examination of the report......

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Director of Drainage Services, Mr TONG Ka-hung, Edwin, to retire (17/2/2019)

The Director of Drainage Services, Mr TONG Ka-hung, Edwin, will retire this month. Looking back, despite having served in various policy bureaux and departments in his 37 years of government service, Edwin says that his most memorable and satisfying work experiences all come from the Drainage Services Department (DSD). This time, I have invited him to share with us how he feels about his imminent retirement and talk about people and works projects that he still has vivid memories of, and give us a glimpse of the future priority work of the DSD......

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“Property Alert” service of the Land Registry (10/2/2019)

To many people, buying a property is probably the most important investment in life. To help flat owners safeguard their property interests, the Land Registry (LR) has recently launched the “Property Alert” service. This enhanced e-Alert Service provides a simple way to let property owners stay vigilant of what is happening to their properties. Today, I have invited the Land Registrar, Ms Doris CHEUNG Mei-chu, to give us a brief introduction to this service......

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The Victoria Park Lunar New Year Fair – Moongates (3/2/2019)

Today is the second day before the Lunar New Year (LNY). First of all, I wish you a very happy and successful year ahead! Have you noticed a series of red and pink arch towers at the entrance and along the aisles of the LNY Fair at the Victoria Park this year? In fact, they are the beautification works designed by a young local architect as invited by the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD). Fair-goers can “check in” and take photos at these spots. This time, I have invited the design team behind the scenes, including the winner of the Hong Kong Institute of Architects (HKIA) Young Architect Award, Mr NG Ka-kin, Gary, and a colleague of the ArchSD, to explain the features and symbolic meanings of the works......

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The moment of truth for the Kwu Tung North and Fanling North Development (27/1/2019)

After resumption of the North East New Territories New Development Areas Planning and Engineering Study in 2008, the Government has spent over a decade in the planning, consultation and refinement of the project. The process involves going through various statutory procedures, patiently communicating with stakeholders, as well as making timely refinements of implementation details, including revisions to the compensation and rehousing (C&R) policies. We initiated the funding application procedures with the Legislative Council (LegCo) for the main works for the First Phase Development of the Kwu Tung North (KTN) and Fanling North (FLN) New Development Areas (NDAs) last week. Let me talk about some issues of concern in relation to the resumption and clearance of land here......

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Old halls of residence at HKU declared monuments (20/1/2019)

Last year, the Government announced that the exteriors of three historic buildings – Fung Ping Shan Building, Eliot Hall and May Hall – at The University of Hong Kong (HKU) as monuments. May Hall is my hall of residence when I studied in the university. This time, I have invited a colleague of Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) to return to this familiar place for a visit and introduce the architectural features and histories of these three historic buildings......

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New construction technology to create boundless possibilities (13/1/2019)

The Government has been encouraging the construction industry to proactively adopt innovation and technology to enhance productivity, built quality, site safety and environmental performance. The Construction Innovation and Technology Application Centre (CITAC) of the Construction Industry Council (CIC) earlier unveiled a new round of exhibition featuring a total of 40 innovation and technology exhibits, many of which are innovative mechanical inventions and adopt high-end construction technology. This time, accompanied by the Executive Director of the CIC, Mr CHENG Ting-ning, Albert, and a manager of the centre, I have invited the Under Secretary for Development, Mr LIU Chun-san, to visit the centre and introduce to you some exhibits in particular......

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Bar benders - Development of Hong Kong's bar bending trade (6/1/2019)

The construction industry is one of the major pillars of Hong Kong's economy with a large number of industry participants. Among the many trades, bar bending has a prominent position as it has witnessed our city’s urbanisation and grown together with Hong Kong. Because of its high requirements for skills and physical fitness, in addition to its high pay, the trade has attracted quite a number of young people to join in recent years. This time, to learn more about the professionalism and perseverance of bar benders, I have invited an instructor who teaches the bar bending course at the Hong Kong Institute of Construction (HKIC) and a practitioner who is a graduate to share with us why they join the industry and their work experiences......

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A volunteer visit to share the festive warmth with the elderly (30/12/2018)

2018 is coming to an end. Looking back on the past year, the Development Bureau (DEVB) has been fully occupied with work but many of our colleagues have been enthusiastic volunteers, willing to spend their leisure time to care for the society. Various departments under the DEVB have set up different volunteer groups, big or small, to bring warmth to all corners of the territory. This time, I would like to introduce two volunteer groups respectively from the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) and the Land Registry (LR). Earlier on, about 30 volunteers of them visited an elderly home to celebrate Christmas with and extend New Year wishes to the elderly people......

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Right Tree, Right Place (23/12/2018)

When you look at the trees in the street, your attention is often only focused on the tree forms, whether they have beautiful flowers or cause any obstruction to the traffic and pedestrian flow, etc. In fact, you may not realise that the selection of tree species for street planting involves a lot of knowledge as every tree species has its unique “character”, and on top of that, they have to grow in the dense and compact city of Hong Kong. Thus, there are a series of considerations behind the decision......

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Exploring special features about manhole covers (16/12/2018)

While walking along the main streets and alleys, you may not notice the manhole covers that are lest remarkable under your feet. The fact is every manhole cover bears a different pattern and code. Manhole covers are an indispensable part of a city’s public facilities, serving as doors for drainage workers to open for inspection and clearance of manholes and drains when necessary. In celebration of the 30th anniversary of its establishment next year, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) earlier held a first ever Manhole Cover Design Competition. This time, I have invited “a manhole cover expert” to talk about the types and design features of manhole covers, and explore with you the meanings behind these codes on them......

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The GreenWay Pilot Project (9/12/2018)

In recent months, visitors to the Kwun Tong Promenade may cycle along the waterfront apart from running, strolling or picnicking on the lawn to enjoy the Victoria Harbour views. In July this year, the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) launched a six-month GreenWay Pilot Project at the Kwun Tong Promenade in the Kai Tak Development Area (KTDA). Under the pilot project, a footpath of approximately 1 kilometre (km) in length at the promenade was turned into the GreenWay for shared use by pedestrians and cyclists, with free rental of bicycles provided for adults and children alike......

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Mountain bike trails in south Lantau (2/12/2018)

The Sustainable Lantau Blueprint announced last year sets out the future direction of “Development in the North, Conservation for the South”. We will enhance the conservation elements in the predominant part of Lantau, in particular the southern part, and plan to optimise the use of the existing resources for leisure and recreational activities. This time, I have invited the Under Secretary for Development, Mr LIU Chun-san, to take you on a tour of south Lantau. There, the engineers of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) have provided details of the construction of a large-scale mountain bike training ground near Lai Chi Yuen Tsuen and the expansion of mountain bike trail networks in Mui Wo and Chi Ma Wan and shared with us a unique experience of cycling……

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What do you think about “the Supply of Recycled Water in Hong Kong”? (25/11/2018)

To cope with the challenges brought about by climate change on water resources, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) has been actively exploring new water resources, such as recycled water, that are not susceptible to climate change. Currently, the WSD is conducting a public consultation on the supply, charge and use of recycled water. At the same time, WSD has been working with the Drainage Services Department (DSD) to take forward the production of reclaimed water. This time, I have invited the Under Secretary for Development (USDEV), Mr LIU Chun-san, to take us to the Shek Wu Hui Sewage Treatment Works (SWHSTW) in Sheung Shui and tell us more about the details of the public consultation and the production of reclaimed water……

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“Building Doctor” takes the pulse of old buildings (18/11/2018)

Timely building repairs and maintenance can weed out problems at an early stage and ensure public safety. The building surveyors of the Buildings Department (BD) are like “building doctors”, “taking the pulse” of aging buildings to prevent their safety conditions from deteriorating. Sometimes I share different stories of my colleagues in “My Blog” to give a better picture of the work of the various departments under the Development Bureau. This time, I have invited Ms SHUM Ying, a young building surveyor, who will tell us about her daily work and remind us of the importance of the Mandatory Building Inspection Scheme (MBIS) and the Mandatory Window Inspection Scheme (MWIS)......

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Successful conclusion of the “Heritage Vogue · Hollywood Road” street carnival (11/11/2018)

The “Heritage Vogue · Hollywood Road” street carnival, organised by the Commissioner for Heritage's Office (CHO) of the Development Bureau (DEVB), concluded successfully last Sunday (4 November), attracting more than 76 000 visitors. That day, the Acting Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr WONG Kam-sing, the Convenor of the Non-official Members of the Executive Council, Mr Bernard Charnwut CHAN, and I attended the event together to enjoy the festive atmosphere along Hollywood Road. With the active participation and support of various organisations and stakeholders, the carnival, packed with fun activities, was held successfully. In offering the public and tourists an opportunity to experience the rich history and the atmosphere of culture and art of Hollywood Road, we also enhance their awareness of preservation and revitalisation of historic buildings......

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Thoughts on district visits (4/11/2018)

In the past few weeks, I have introduced the various policy initiatives under the purview of the Development Bureau (DEVB) put forth in the Policy Address. This week, let’s change the subject and talk about my thoughts on the earlier visits to Yuen Long and Wong Tai Sin districts. During each district visit, my team and I would meet with local District Council members to listen to their advice and suggestions on government work and district affairs and explain to them the Government’s ideas and views, with a view to enhancing mutual understanding through interactions. We would also take the opportunity to visit district projects to see how they go from nothing to something. Recently, we visited the Former Lau Fau Shan Police Station under Batch V of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme), and the Kai Tak River, the revitalisation of which would be completed this year……

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Lift Modernisation Subsidy Scheme (28/10/2018)

Expediting lift modernisation is conducive to enhancing lift safety and further safeguarding safety of the public. One of the measures proposed in the Policy Address is the launch of a $2.5 billion Lift Modernisation Subsidy Scheme (LIMSS) over six years starting from the financial year 2019-20 to provide financial incentives and appropriate professional support to building owners in need so as to encourage them to carry out lift modernisation works, thereby enhancing the safety of aged lifts. Earlier, the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services (DEMS), Mr SIT Wing-hang, Alfred, and the Director of Building Rehabilitation of the Urban Renewal Authority (URA), Mr HO Chi-wai, Daniel, visited the elderly owners of an old building in Tai Kok Tsui to explore how to help them improve their living environment and introduce the details of the scheme to them......

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Innovation Professionalisation Revitalisation (21/10/2018)

The construction industry has played an important role in developing first-class infrastructure to make Hong Kong a world-renowned cosmopolitan city. However, with increasing construction volumes, rising construction costs and ageing skilled workforce in recent years, together with multiple incidents in individual large-scale projects, the construction industry has been facing enormous pressure and challenges. The Chief Executive proposes “Construction 2.0” in the Policy Address, advocating “Innovation”, “Professionalisation” and “Revitalisation” to lead the industry to make changes, capitalise on future development opportunities and scale new heights......

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Adopting a multi-pronged approach to boost land supply (14/10/2018)

The latest Policy Address delivered by the Chief Executive puts considerable emphasis on land supply and it has sparked a hot debate. Housing currently tops the list of public concerns. We need sufficient land to cater for all activities and facilities, be it economic development, or government and community facilities, such as education, medical and health, social welfare facilities, open space, public space. The Policy Address puts forward numerous initiatives with a view to tackling the issue of land supply by means of developing new land resources on one hand and optimising the use of existing developed land on the other ......

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Behind the scenes of fireworks displays (7/10/2018)

A spectacular fireworks display lighted up the sky above the Victoria Harbour on 1 October. In fact, behind every successful fireworks display are the joint efforts of various government departments, of which the Mines Division of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) plays an important part. This time, I have invited colleagues from the Mines Division to take us on board the barge where fireworks are installed and set off. They will talk about their work and, in particular, the way to ensure that a large-scale fireworks display will be conducted smoothly and safely......

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A big thank you to the volunteers (30/9/2018)

When Super Typhoon Mangkhut hit Hong Kong, it caused extensive damage to trees across the territory. Trees of different sizes and species in various locations were affected. In the wake of the typhoon, various government departments spared no effort in dealing with the aftermath, removing fallen trees and clearing broken trunks and branches. Some companies and organisations even formed volunteer teams to render assistance. Earlier, I visited Kennedy Town Praya in the Western District and met with volunteers who had assisted in the clean-up work. I thanked them for the time and effort they put into the work to restore the community to its former cleanliness and tidiness......

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Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr HON Chi-keung, to retire (23/9/2018)

The Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr HON Chi-keung (CK), will retire next month. In his 38 years of government service (including three years of training), CK has handled mostly project management and dealt with numerous difficult problems. Earlier, I invited CK to share with me his feelings about his imminent retirement and talk about the two public work projects that he still had vivid memories of - the drainage improvement works on Nathan Road and the Harbour Area Treatment Scheme (HATS), formerly known as the Strategic Sewage Disposal Scheme. As the construction industry is facing numerous challenges in recent years, what messages does CK have for the industry and colleagues......

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Inclusive Playground in Tuen Mun Park to open soon (16/9/2018)

Hong Kong’s first inclusive playground (IP) in Tuen Mun Park themed on “water” and “sand” will open soon, which provides yet another great place for our children to burn their energy! Unlike the traditional playgrounds, the IP created by the design team will provide a quality barrier-free recreational area for children of different ages and abilities to play together, experience all sorts of fun and learn different skills. Recently, accompanied by colleagues of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), I have paid a visit to the IP, the first of its kind in Hong Kong, to learn more about its design concepts, special features and, in particular, the efforts made by the design team and the relevant stakeholders behind the scenes......

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When magistracy turns into an art and design college (9/9/2018)

I have earlier introduced a number of projects under the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme) of the Development Bureau (DEVB) to explain how historic buildings are redefined through preservation and revitalisation. This time, I am taking you on a tour of the revitalisation project of the Former North Kowloon Magistracy - the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Hong Kong, to see how a solemn court building has been transformed into a dynamic art and design college. I have also invited its students to share with us on the behind-the-scene brainstorming to come up with the creative concept for a DEVB’s promotion event from their recent participation.......

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A different school design (2/9/2018)

With the summer holidays coming to an end, students are getting ready for a new school year. A comfortable learning environment is crucial to the development of our students, and a people-oriented school design would create a pleasant atmosphere that encourages exploration and interaction among children on the campus. This week, I will take you on a tour of the Po Leung Kuk Stanley Ho Sau Nan Primary School, another project undertaken by the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) in the Kai Tak Development Area (KTDA), to learn more about the effort put into the project, from planning, design to completion. We will also see how architects have thought out of the box and worked hard to create an ideal campus for the students.......

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Promoting sustainable building design–Trade and Industry Tower in Kai Tak (26/8/2018)

To meet the keen demands of the community and the need to protect our environment, we require not only comprehensive town planning but also good building design. Over the years, the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) has actively promoted sustainable building design and incorporated low-carbon design elements into works projects, so as to ensure that the impact on the environment and the people is taken into account in planning every detail of a building. For two weeks in a row, I will take you to visit building projects undertaken by the ArchSD. The first stop is the Trade and Industry Tower (TI Tower) in the Kai Tak Development (KTD). I will introduce to you its design features and functions aimed to save energy, reduce emissions and enhance environmental performance……

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A sharing session with trainees of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (19/8/2018)

The Government strives to nurture professionals in different fields for Hong Kong to promote social progress and ensure safety in our city. In my previous blog posts I introduced to you the training base for electrical and mechanical talent, this time I would like to share with you my meeting with two secondary school student participants of the “Be a Government Official for a Day” Programme and several trainees of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO). The trainees shared with us their training experiences and the reasons why they pursue a professional career in engineering geology and geotechnical engineering. I hope the experiences of these “big brothers” will inspire more youngsters to explore their interests early and equip themselves for joining the workforce......

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Ecological conservation in Tung Chung (12/8/2018)

Last week I introduced Shui Hau in South Lantau. This week, let us visit Tung Chung in North Lantau. The works of the first phase of the Tung Chung New Town Extension (TCNTE) project commenced at the end of last year. In planning for the development, we attach great importance to the balance with the ecological conservation. Some time earlier, the Acting Secretary for Development, Mr LIU Chun-san, and the Political Assistant to Secretary for Development, Mr FUNG Ying-lun, Allen, went to inspect the Tung Chung Stream in Tung Chung West to learn more about the works to be carried out in Tung Chung under the project by the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) in future......

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Eco-tour to promote conservation of Lantau (5/8/2018)

To promote sustainable development of Lantau, the Government promulgated the Sustainable Lantau Blueprint in 2017 with “Development in the North, Conservation for the South” as the overarching principle. The Blueprint outlines the strategic planning and development framework for Lantau. As promotion of community involvement and public education plays an important role in conservation work, this time I have invited the Under Secretary for Development (USDEV), Mr LIU Chun-san, and the Political Assistant (PA) to Secretary for Development, Mr FUNG Ying-lun, Allen, to take us to enjoy the beautiful scenery at Shui Hau in Lantau. Recently, they joined an eco-tour with the public to support and take part in ecological and environmental conservation……

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To learn beyond classroom and be a town planner in summer break (29/7/2018)

Hong Kong’s future town planning development is closely related to our next generation. For Hong Kong to become a more liveable, competitive and sustainable Asia’s World City, town planners have a vital role to play. This summer, the Planning Department (PlanD) and the City Gallery jointly organised the “Summer Planning School 2018 - Be a Town Planner" programme to provide a range of courses for both primary and secondary schools students. The programme which has recruited several hundred student participants is designed to enhance our younger generation’s understanding of the development and town planning issues in Hong Kong in a plain yet comprehensive manner. Recently, I attended one day of the programme with 100-odd primary school students to test these “little planners” on their understanding of Hong Kong and get to know their views on the planning of community facilities……

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Nurturing E&M talent (22/7/2018)

Last week, I introduced the work of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) in promoting innovation and technology. This time, I would like to take you further inside the EMSD headquarters building to visit its Training Workshop and chat with the young trainees about their daily classroom studies and how they have been gearing up for the WorldSkills Competition. The Technician Training Scheme (previously known as the Apprentice Training Scheme) run by the EMSD has more than 60 years of history. With the recent release of the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination results, our fresh graduates may consider enrolling in one of those electrical and mechanical (E&M) or construction -related courses to acquire the skills for a bright career path ahead……

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The EMSD moves forward with Hong Kong for 70 years (15/7/2018)

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD). Earlier on, accompanied by the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services, Mr SIT Wing-hang, Alfred, and departmental colleagues, I visited the EMSD headquarters building in Kowloon Bay to learn more about its work. The EMSD is known for its achievements and experience in spurring innovation and technology (I&T) and providing manpower training. This week, I have invited several EMSD colleagues to talk about how the department applies the research and development (R&D) results in the I&T field to enhance the quality and efficiency of its services while promoting the development of I&T projects of local start-ups and accelerating the commercialisation of R&D results......

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“Mountain cutting and rock breaking” (rock blasting and breaking) (8/7/2018)

Last week, we talked about a thematic exhibition featuring the Hong Kong’s quarry industry. This week, colleagues from the Mines Division of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) will take us to Lam Tei Quarry in Tuen Mun, which is the only existing quarry operating in Hong Kong, to appreciate the quarry operation and the work of the Mines Division in supervising the use of explosives for “mountain cutting and rock breaking” (rock blasting and breaking) in the quarry……

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An anniversary review of walking together (5/7/2018)

Last year, I was honoured to be appointed as the Secretary for Development. Time flies. A year has passed. With the concerted efforts of departmental colleagues, we have been handling numerous issues. During the process, we have reached out to different stakeholders to conduct open and frank exchanges on various policies and initiatives. I am impressed by the number of people who are committed to our society. Our views may differ at times, but we share common goals of driving society forward and developing Hong Kong into an ideal city for living and working. Now, I would like to review with you the work of the Development Bureau (DEVB) over the past year......

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Exploring the development of Hong Kong’s quarry industry (1/7/2018)

Have you noticed that the names of quite a number of places in Hong Kong contain the character of “rock” in Chinese? Shek Tong Tsui, Diamond Hill, Shek O and Shek Mun are some examples. According to folk records, all of these places are closely related to quarries in the old days as quarries were once located in these places. With a history spanning over a century, the Hong Kong’s quarry industry has not only taken forward the Hong Kong’s city construction, but has also provided valuable developable land to support Hong Kong’s different development needs......

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Conservation.Revitalisation.Legacy (24/6/2018)

Every year, dragon boat races are held in various districts across the territory to celebrate the Dragon Boat Festival. This year, I was invited to Tai O to watch with the public a traditional annual event unique to Tai O organised by the local fishing community – the “Dragon Boat Water Parade”. Setting foot in Tai O, I certainly did not miss the opportunity to “check-in” at the Tai O Heritage Hotel, a project under the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme) of the Development Bureau (DEVB). Being a distinctive building of historic interest, the hotel has become a must-see hot spot for tourists in recent years, and serves as an example of successful conservation and revitalisation. Also, as this year marks the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Commissioner for Heritage’s Office (CHO), I have invited the Commissioner for Heritage, Mr YAM Ho-san, José, to talk about the CHO’s past efforts and its future plan in taking forward the work on heritage conservation……

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Father’s Day Series (2): Assistant Electrical Inspector Mr CHUI Chi-kit of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (17/6/2018)

Today is Father’s Day. First of all I would like to wish all fathers a Happy Father’s Day! Last week, I shared with you the story of Drain Chargeman Mr KOO Wai-ming of the Drainage Services Department. This week we have another frontline colleague, Mr CHUI Chi-kit, also a good father, who works behind the scenes in our bustling airport. Mr CHUI is an Assistant Electrical Inspector of the Airfield Facilities Section of the Airport and Vehicle Engineering Division (AVED) under the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), who is responsible for the maintenance and repair of landing and runway lights at the Hong Kong International Airport. He performs shift duty around the clock to ensure the proper functioning of the lighting systems, which are extremely important to aircrafts during takeoff and landing.……

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Father’s Day Series (1): Drain Chargeman Mr KOO Wai-ming of the Drainage Services Department (10/6/2018)

The rainy and typhoon season has begun in Hong Kong. A few days ago, the Hong Kong Observatory issued landslip warning amid heavy downpours under Typhoon Signal No. 3. Colleagues of various departments are always on standby and ready to respond to any emergency incidents. As Father’s Day is approaching, I would like to share with you in two consecutive weeks the work of two frontline workers and their little stories as a father, so as to show our support for all good dads……

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Enhancing building safety Stepping up public education (3/6/2018)

The Government is committed to enhance building safety in Hong Kong through a multi-pronged approach. With the effort of our colleagues at the Buildings Department (BD) over the years and co-operation among the industry, there has been growing public awareness of building safety. In celebration of BD’s 25th anniversary, the department has taken the opportunity to organise an array of activities to enhance public understanding of and sense of responsibility over building safety. Recently, I have visited BD’s Building Information Centre (BIC) in the company of Mr YU Tak-cheung, Dick, the Deputy Director of Buildings and colleagues of BD to learn more about the services provided by the department as well as its efforts made on building safety publicity and education……

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Construction Safety Week aims to enhance site safety (27/5/2018)

The Construction Safety Week, jointly organised by the Development Bureau (DEVB) and the Construction Industry Council, has entered its seventh year with the main theme “Partnering for Safety Enhancement” this year. A wide range of activities have been held over the past week to promote the message of “zero accidents” on construction sites to industry stakeholders and the public and call for the unity of the construction industry to ensure site safety......

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One heart towards Sichuan reconstruction (20/5/2018)

The devastating earthquake in Wenchuan a decade ago left extensive damage in substantial parts of Sichuan Province. Ten years have passed by in the blink of an eye. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region took an active role in the reconstruction which took eight years to complete, and the works were successfully concluded in 2016, giving the earthquake stricken area a brand new look. Recently, colleagues in the Development Bureau (DEVB) and I joined the Chief Executive to visit Sichuan to attend the Hong Kong-Sichuan Co-operation Conference and an event in memory of the victims of the earthquake that took place 10 years ago. The delegation included quite a number of professionals who had participated in the reconstruction. Together we witnessed the achievements of the reconstruction project……

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Meet “May” for an introduction to the Hong Kong News-Expo set to open by the end of this year (13/5/2018)

The Central and Sheung Wan areas have been buzzing with activities recently. After the scheduled opening of the Central Police Station Compound (Tai Kwun) at the end of May, another revitalised historic building, the Hong Kong News-Expo (HKNE), is also due to open by the end of this year. This time, I had invited veteran journalist and HKNE’s Vice-chairperson, Ms CHAN Suk-mei, May, to walk us through the highlights of the HKNE. We even had a glimpse of a rare edition, published in 1878, of the Universal Circulating Herald (《循環日報》), which was the first Chinese-language newspaper ever run and funded by Chinese in Hong Kong……

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The two Secretaries’ visit to the Water Supplies Department’s floating photovoltaic system (6/5/2018)

To tackle the impacts of climate change, departments under the Development Bureau (DEVB) have been proactively implementing a host of energy-saving measures, including those to enhance energy efficiency in the operational processes and to explore the application of renewable energy in various facilities. Recently, I have invited the Secretary for the Environment, Mr WONG Kam-sing, for a visit together to the Water Supplies Department’s (WSD) floating photovoltaic (FPV) system at Plover Cove Reservoir to better understand its effectiveness in environmental protection and energy saving. I would like to share our visit with you……

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Land for Hong Kong: Our Home, Our Say (29/4/2018)

Providing a steady and sustainable land supply to cope with Hong Kong's various development needs tops the Government's agenda. Since its establishment in September last year, the Task Force on Land Supply appointed by the Chief Executive has already held 14 meetings to take a thorough and macro review of the 18 land supply options. Last week, the Task Force officially launched a five-month public engagement (PE) exercise to engage the community in discussions on the pros and cons of the different options and their priorities. The objective is to allow the public to grasp the basic information on the various options before making choices and decisions. At the present stage, the Government will listen carefully to public views of various sectors of community to consolidate the foundation for our next stage of work. Recently, I have invited Mr Stanley WONG, Chairman of the Task Force, to talk about the work of the PE exercise and what he expects to achieve……

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Conserving and Revitalising Murray Building (22/4/2018)

Located in Central’s core business area, the 50-year-old Murray Building was where my and other civil servants’ offices used to be. As one of the eight projects under the “Conserving Central” initiative, this former government office block has been conserved and revitalised into a chic hotel “The Murray”. Recently, I returned to this familiar place for a visit and learnt more about how the architectural features of the building have been preserved after renovation.……

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Exploring Tai Tam: a hundred years of waterworks history (15/4/2018)

Hong Kong reservoirs, endowed with captivating scenery, have become popular outing destinations among Hong Kong people in recent years. Earlier, I invited the Director of Water Supplies (DWS) to visit the Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail on Hong Kong Island to explore the hundred years of waterworks history of the territory. Strolling along the Tai Tam Waterworks Heritage Trail, you are not only surrounded by trees and mesmerised by the reflection of the landscapes in tranquil water, you may also appreciate the 21 historic waterworks structures which have been declared monuments. These include a number of magnificent reservoir dams, some old masonry bridges and aqueducts, and a red brick water pumping station which has previously been used for location filming and is in fact still in use today……

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Visiting the Blue House Cluster again and celebrating the success of the revitalisation project (8/4/2018)

Last September, I attended the opening ceremony of the Blue House Cluster revitalisation project in Wan Chai, and paid a visit to old and new residents from two households. I was recently back at the building cluster with much excitement to attend the award presentation ceremony to celebrate the “Viva Blue House” for winning the top honour of the Award of Excellence of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation. This is the first time a built heritage conservation project in Hong Kong has received this honour, in recognition of the “Retain House and Tenant” concept and the community participation approach in conservation and revitalisation. In this connection, I have invited the team leader of the project who has witnessed its birth to share some interesting stories about her participation……

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Sustainable urban greening for an enhanced living environment (1/4/2018)

With the approach of warmer weather recently, myriad flowers are blossoming quietly. People are drawn to take and tag their photos at various locations. As the saying goes, “One generation plants the tree in whose shade another generation rests.” All along, the Government has spared no efforts in promoting district greening. Many years ago, it has started developing the Greening Master Plans (GMPs) for implementing greening works in urban districts, so as to improve and enhance people’s living environment and help reduce carbon emissions. This time, I have invited a Landscape Architect o the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) t introduce our work o urban greening and take you t see the Tabebuia chrysantha (Yellow Pui), which only blossoms i spring……

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My first ride on the Hong Kong Observation Wheel (25/3/2018)

The beautiful Victoria Harbour is an unique icon of Hong Kong. From the Central Harbourfront, we can see the stunning view of ferries passing by, which is set against the backdrop of Hong Kong’s towering skyline and beautiful ridgelines, with the Peak and the Lion Rock overlooking each other on both sides of the harbour. In recent years, much vibrancy has been added to the Central Harbourfront, examples include the green lawn of Tamar Park and the various events that attracted both local residents and tourists, to name a few. Our harbour has been cherished by Hong Kong as a precious asset. It is our aspiration to enhance the harbourfront areas and achieve the common vision of creating an attractive, vibrant, accessible and sustainable world-class harbourfront......

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A green, patient-centred children’s hospital (18/3/2018)

The Hong Kong Children’s Hospital (HKCH) in Kai Tak is the first children’s hospital that specialises in paediatric medical services in Hong Kong’s public healthcare system. The hospital commenced construction in 2013 and will come into operation by phases in the fourth quarter of this year. Unlike conventional hospitals which give one a sense of solemnity, the HKCH is designed to create a personalised, non-institutional, child-friendly, comfortable and home-like environment that provides the best clinical care by taking a patient-centred approach. The hospital is also committed to incorporating environmental-friendly elements, such as the wide application of sustainable design concepts and energy saving installations, as well as increasing green coverage. Recently, accompanied by the Director of Architectural Services, Mrs LAM YU Ka-Wai, Sylvia, and colleagues of the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), I have visited the new hospital building and learned more about the architectural features of the hospital......

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Jao Tsung-I Academy – Professor Lee Chack-fan’s recollection of Professor Jao (11/3/2018)

Distinguished sinologist Professor Jao Tsung-I passed away last month at the old age of 101. Professor Jao was very learned in matters of the ancient and modern worlds, and equally if not more talented in both the academic field and fine arts. His remarkable achievements in academia and arts and his contributions towards promoting traditional Chinese culture have won our deepest respect. Today I meet up with the Director of Jao Tsung-I Petite Ecole of The University of Hong Kong, Professor Lee Chack-fan, at the Jao Tsung-I Academy, an historic building revitalisation project. We pay tribute to Professor Jao and look at some of the Academy’s precious collection……

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Promoting “Operation Building Bright 2.0” (4/3/2018)

In his latest budget, the Financial Secretary said that the Government will make good use of resources and invest for the future to enhance people’s quality of life, with a view to building Hong Kong into a better place for living and working. The Development Bureau will spare no efforts in this respect. Last year, the Chief Executive announced in the Policy Address that the Government will earmark $3 billion for “Operation Building Bright 2.0” (OBB 2.0) in the hope of facilitating proper and timely maintenance and repairs to enhance building safety, extend the useful life of buildings, slow down urban decay and improve the living conditions of the community. I would like to introduce details of the operation here......

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Committing to conserving the habitat at Lam Tsuen River (25/2/2018)

During Chinese New Year, many people will visit the “wishing trees” and Tin Hau Temple in Lam Tsuen, Tai Po. But do you know about the Lam Tsuen River nearby? Its upstream is one of the some 30 ecologically important streams in Hong Kong, providing habitats for rare wildlife species, such as the Hong Kong Newt. Given the extraordinary conservation value of Lam Tsuen River, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) has been committed to conserving the river ecosystem while undertaking river improvement works in Upper Lam Tsuen River to alleviate flood risk in the region. Recently, accompanied by the Director of Drainage Services, Mr Edwin TONG, I visited the Lam Tsuen River to learn more about the achievements of the conservation measures adopted in the project

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Exploring the “Green Hub” (18/2/2018)

Today is the third day of the Chinese New Year. On behalf of all colleagues in the Development Bureau, I would like to wish you all good luck, good health and every success in your work. Hong Kong is a fast paced city. If you want to take a break and find a place to relax in the weekend, there are in fact many choices. For instance, you can explore the city’s historic buildings and find out more about the rich built heritage of Hong Kong as well as their history, art and culture. Here, I would like to introduce to you the “Green Hub” (Old Tai Po Police Station) under the “Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme” of the Development Bureau and have invited the person in charge to share with us their experiences in restoring and revitalising this heritage site into a "Green Hub for Sustainable Living" to promote ecologically responsible and low-carbon living……

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On 40 years of landslip prevention by four current and former heads of the Geotechnical Engineering Office (4/2/2018)

Hong Kong has a hilly terrain with limited flat lands. Most of its buildings and road facilities are constructed along the hillsides. The unique topographical conditions have posed many challenges to the slope safety of Hong Kong. In the early years, the city was prone to landslides, causing injuries or loss of human life and damage to property. The Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) was thus set up in 1977, which is currently under the Civil Engineering and Development Department. The GEO has since vigorously implemented the comprehensive Slope Safety System, and landslide risks have been substantially reduced. However, we still need to stay vigilant against the Landslide Demon. For this purpose, I have invited the current and three former heads of the GEO to come together and talk about their work in this aspect……

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An ethnic minority colleague from the Water Supplies Department–an electrical expert, Mr Swindar SINGH (28/1/2018)

There are many captivating, little stories in a big city. I would like to use “My Blog” as a platform to share the different stories of my colleagues from time to time and let you know more about the work of the various departments under the Development Bureau. I have recently learned of a colleague of Indian descent and that three generations of his family have worked at the Water Supplies Department (WSD). Electric pumps and motors have virtually become part of his life. He is Mr Swindar SINGH, currently the Chief Technical Officer of the Electrical Workshop in the WSD. This will be his fortieth year in the civil service. He describes the WSD as a big family to him and colleagues are like brothers, united as one, regardless of colour and race. I have invited Mr SINGH to tell us his story......

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Introducing the Construction Innovation and Technology Application Centre (21/1/2018)

In recent years, given the challenges of high costs and labour shortages, one of the policies of the Government is to encourage the construction industry to adopt innovation and technology to enhance productivity, cost-effectiveness and safety performance. The Construction Innovation and Technology Application Centre (CITAC), established by the Construction Industry Council (CIC) at its Kowloon Bay Training Centre in November last year provides the industry with an additional platform to share information of advanced technology, work equipment and machinery and building materials developed both locally and internationally, and to facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration. Here, I have invited the manager of the Centre to give us a guided tour......

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Building a smart city: Development of spatial data (14/1/2018)

Have you ever tried to “check-in” to a location on social media? With a GPS-enabled smartphone installed with a mobile map app, you can tag your location and share it with friends. You can also find out how to get to a destination or search for nearby restaurants, bus stops, tourist attractions as well as acquiring real-time traffic information. All these location-related information is called “spatial data”……

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Introducing the Hong Kong Hydrographic Office (7/1/2018)

As there is land surveying on land, there is hydrographic surveying at sea, though many of us may not be familiar with it. Unlike other sections of the Marine Department, the Hong Kong Hydrographic Office (HKHO) has been put directly under the Development Bureau instead of the Transport and Housing Bureau ever since its inception. Hong Kong is one of the busiest ports in the world. In the context of navigational safety, the HKHO carries out hydrographic surveys in Hong Kong waters regularly to gather relevant data including water depths and seabed nature and other navigational information to produce up-to-date nautical charts and publications, as well as providing useful nautical information for port users. Today, I have invited Mr Michael CHAU who is a Principal Marine Officer and Hydrographer to share with us the work of the HKHO……

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The first community facility to use the modular building construction method (31/12/2017)

With the popularity of smartphones nowadays, a lot of people are turning to the Internet for information. However, there are still many book lovers and public libraries are a good place for them. Hong Kong’s first 24-hour self-service library station has been launched recently, offering users very convenient round-the-clock public library services for borrowing and returning books. This library station, in fact, is also the city’s first community facility applying the concept of modular building construction method, and it was substantially completed in only four weeks. How did the construction works carried out? What are the merits of this construction method? This time, I have invited a colleague from the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) under the Development Bureau to share his experience with us......

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Celebrating Christmas with the elderly (24/12/2017)

Christmas is just around the corner, together with colleagues from the Development Bureau, I would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. During this festive season, wouldn’t it be wonderful to take some time out of our busy schedule to spread joy, love and care to the people around us? Earlier on, I visited an elderly centre with Mr Liu Chun-san, the Under Secretary for Development and Mr Allen Fung, the Political Assistant and spent a joyful morning together playing games, doing arts and crafts and chit-chatting with the elderly people……

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SDEV visits Yau Tsim Mong District to see some revitalised projects (17/12/2017)

While most of us must have visited the Flower Market in Mong Kok to shop for plants and flowers, I wonder how many of you have ever noticed the unique architectural style of the tenement buildings in the area? Do you know that most of these buildings have their own stories to tell? Earlier on, I visited the Yau Tsim Mong District to see the preservation and revitalisation project of the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) at Prince Edward Road West and Yuen Ngai Street. Showcasing the unique architectural style of the 1930s, these tenement buildings make up one of the longest remaining rows of pre-war verandah-type shophouses in Hong Kong. After revitalisation, the shophouses have taken on a refreshing look. URA has strived to preserve and reflect the local character and history of the area in the process of urban renewal planning, blending in new and old elements and injecting new vibrancy into the district……

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CEDD and PlanD have won the international award for innovative underground space concept (10/12/2017)

Given the lack of land resources in Hong Kong, it has all along been our policy objective to develop underground space and enhance the use of rock caverns systematically so as to promote the sustainable development of Hong Kong. I am glad to share with you that the International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association (ITA) has earlier awarded the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) and the Planning Department (PlanD) the Innovative Underground Space Concept of the Year in the ITA Tunnelling Awards 2017 for their concerted efforts in formulating the Cavern Master Plan (CMP) for Hong Kong……

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Supporting EMSD’s effort to promote innovation and technology development (3/12/2017)

To embrace the new scene brought by the innovation and technology (I&T) development, many industry sectors are eager to keep pace with the trend and develop more advanced products, technologies or services. In this regard, the Government plays the role of a facilitator and a promoter. Over the years, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) of the Development Bureau has been actively supporting the development of start-ups in the electrical and mechanical (E&M) field. Recently, the department has turned its headquarters building and related facilities in Kowloon Bay into a shared testing ground to provide a platform for interested people to test newly developed E&M products and technologies, and collect data to verify their functions and effectiveness. Here, I will further introduce to you the work of the EMSD in innovation promotion and the enhanced application of new technology……

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Government works projects win BIM awards (26/11/2017)

To enhance productivity and cost-effectiveness of the construction industry, the Government has been proactively promoting innovative construction methods and application of advanced technology. In the past few years, more than 40 Government pilot projects adopted the Building Information Modeling (BIM) technology. One of them, the advance works project for the expansion of Shek Wu Hui sewage treatment works conducted by the Drainage Services Department (DSD), recently won an industry award in recognition of its efforts in adopting innovative technologies in building design. So, what are the benefits of BIM technology to the construction industry? I have invited a young engineer to share with us the adoption of BIM technology in works projects……

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New building well designed for community engagement and greening (19/11/2017)

Walking around Hong Kong, you will find unique architecture in every district. The Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) under the Development Bureau has all along been committed to incorporating sustainable innovative designs and green features into various building projects, so as to ensure the quality, cost effectiveness and sustainable development of community facilities, and provide public spaces for community engagement and public enjoyment. Recently, the new Tsing Yi Southwest Leisure Building designed by the ArchSD was awarded the 2016/17 Hong Kong Institute of Architects Merit Award of Hong Kong (Community Building). It is definitely a recognition and great encouragement to our colleagues who have taken part in the project. I have particularly invited the architect of the project, a Senior Architect of the ArchSD, to share with us the design concepts and the distinctive features of the building……

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Trailwalkers, go for it! (12/11/2017)

Oxfam Trailwalker 2017, the annual charity hiking event, will take place this coming Friday to Sunday. I would like to take this opportunity to cheer the participants on. In the past, I have taken part in the Trailwalker four times and then as a volunteer for many years. The event has given me many fond memories. This year, a total of 5,200 walkers from 1,300 teams will take on the challenge of completing the 100 km MacLehose Trail and other trails within 48 hours. It’s not just a physical challenge, but also a test of willpower and perseverance……

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Young contestants home with fruitful results at the WorldSkills Competition (5/11/2017)

The 44th WorldSkills Competition has just come to a successful conclusion in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates. The Hong Kong Team brings honour to Hong Kong by scooping up a Bronze Prize and seven Medallions for Excellence. Our working partners, namely the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD), have sent six young contestants, together with participants from other sectors, to represent Hong Kong to compete with other contestants from around the world in this international competition hailed as the “Skills Olympics”. A few days ago, I invited our young contestants to share with us their competition experiences and results. I am glad that apart from coming home with satisfactory results, they also find the competition a joyful and unforgettable experience. I am absolutely pleased to see that our young people are willing to challenge themselves, make continuous improvements and value every opportunity to widen their exposure and experience. I believe that they will be able to unleash their potential and shine for the world to see in future……

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Following up on typhoon precautionary measures in Kwun Tong (29/10/2017)

As autumn finally approaches, Hong Kong people can take a break from the threat of tropical cyclones for a while, but the Government still has not let down its guard in taking precautionary measures against typhoon. When super typhoon Hato hit Hong Kong in late August, tidal back flow and flooding occurred in some low-lying coastal areas owing to astronomical high tide and storm surge, which damaged a number of public facilities and adversely affected neighbouring shops and residents along the coastal areas. I am aware that the relevant government departments have all along been actively communicating with the local community to offer them the support needed, and have further reviewed the situation and formulated improvement measures accordingly. Lei Yue Mun of Kwun Tong district was badly hit by the typhoon. On my recent visit to the area, I familiarised myself with the follow-up measures taken by various departments, and also met with members of the Kwun Tong District Council (KTDC) and the local community to discuss related matters......

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Promoting the development of the construction industry through active training and improved productivity (22/10/2017)

The construction industry is crucial to the promotion of Hong Kong’s social and economic development, and is therefore an indispensable partner of the Development Bureau (DEVB). As the Chief Executive said in the Policy Address, the construction industry has been facing the challenges of high construction costs and labour shortage in recent years. Hence, the Government is proactively promoting the adoption of technology and innovative construction methods to improve productivity and cost-effectiveness. This week, I would like to introduce an array of measures set out in the Policy Address to spur the development of the construction industry, so as to provide a better insight into the development prospects and potential of the industry. I hope that more new entrants, particularly young people, will be attracted to join the construction workforce and ease the long-standing problem of labour shortage in the industry......

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Operation Building Bright 2.0 (15/10/2017)

The Chief Executive, Mrs Carrie LAM, delivered her maiden Policy Address recently. The Development Bureau will give all-out support to take forward the various policy initiatives to make Hong Kong an even more livable city. With an increasing number of old buildings, there are now more than 5 000 private residential and composite buildings aged 50 or above in Hong Kong. Without timely maintenance, dilapidated buildings may pose hazards to both residents and passers-by. The Policy Address proposes earmarking $3 billion for “Operation Building Bright 2.0” (“OBB 2.0”) to provide subsidy for property owners of higher risk buildings to conduct necessary inspection and repair works. We plan to launch the operation in the second half of 2018. It is expected that about 2 500 buildings will benefit from this initiative in the next five years……

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Exhibition on "Hong Kong ∞ Impression" at the City Gallery (8/10/2017)

What is your impression of Hong Kong? Is it a bustling city filled with soaring skyscrapers? Or is it a city filled with colour or creativity? Recently I visited the "Hong Kong ∞ Impression" exhibition at the City Gallery in Edinburgh Place, Central, in the company of some foreign guests. The exhibition is presented by the Development Bureau and the Planning Department to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to the motherland and aims to showcase to the public and tourists the achievements of the city’s planning and infrastructure development. It also inspires us to reflect on the future development of the city, and calls for participation in building a liveable, competitive, sustainable and inclusive Hong Kong together. Now let me introduce to you some highlights of the exhibition.……

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Geological survey essential for urban development (1/10/2017)

For every infrastructural project, no matter it is site formation, tunneling or other construction works, comprehensive, professional assessment is essential prior to the commencement of the works. Our colleagues in the Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) of the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), who are responsible for a wide range of geotechnical-related activities to ensure safe and economic development and use of land in Hong Kong, are those unsung heroes who play an important role in promoting growth of this city. The Hong Kong Geological Survey Section, under the GEO, was established in 1982 to undertake detailed geological survey, compile geological maps of Hong Kong and offer authoritative geological advices to the Government, the engineering sector and the general public. Now I would like to introduce the work of this important unit……

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A revitalised Blue House blending old and new (24/9/2017)

Wandering around the streets and alleys of Wan Chai, you will find some buildings that still preserve the ambience of the old city. The Blue House Cluster (BHC) on Stone Nullah Lane, comprising three tenement buildings built between the 1920’s and 1950’s, namely the Blue House, the Yellow House and the Orange House, is one of the projects under Batch II of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme (Revitalisation Scheme). I am very glad to see that thanks to the persistent efforts and participation of residents and various stakeholders, the BHC has completed its renovation and brought a new look to the community. As the first revitalisation trial in Hong Kong that adopts the “Retain House and Tenant” approach, the historic buildings of the BHC not only serve their original residential purpose, but also witness the changes in tenement buildings and community culture over time. Here, I would like to share with you my recent visit to two households of old and new residents to learn about their living condition……

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Enhancing the harbourfront and putting the spaces to good use for public enjoyment (17/9/2017)

Kowloon East is being transformed into another core business district in Hong Kong. Since its establishment in 2012, the Energizing Kowloon East Office (EKEO) under the Development Bureau (DEVB) has been committed to enhancing the connectivity, improving the environment and releasing the development potential of the area. In view of general public support for enhancing the public spaces along the harbourfront, we have further injected vibrancy into the unused sites beneath Kwun Tong Bypass and open them for use by the public and organisations……

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Tai Kwun – a new attraction in the Central and Western District (10/9/2017)

The revitalisation and adaptive re-use of historic buildings is always something to look forward to. I earlier visited the Central Police Station (CPS) Compound, also known as “Tai Kwun” (or Big Station in the literal sense), on Hollywood Road in Central to see the works progress. I learned that the Government has been maintaining a strong partnership with the Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) to take forward this revitalisation project. I am pleased to see that the project is progressing well and hope that the HKJC will be able to open part of the CPS Compound by mid-2018, and provide the public with a quality cultural space blending elements of built heritage, contemporary art and leisure. Also, it will provide a new hub for the public to gather, unwind and enjoy life at a slower pace and improve their quality of life……

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Flashbacks of Two Decades in Hong Kong (3/9/2017)

Time passes, things change … To mark the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to the motherland, the Survey and Mapping Office (SMO) of the Lands Department (LandsD) published a new aerial photo collection – Flashbacks of Two Decades in Hong Kong – to document major developments in the city and bring us back in time to see the changing face of Hong Kong through the featured historic and new images taken by the SMO throughout the years. Here I would like to introduce to you the production team behind the scenes – our colleagues of the SMO; to find out how much effort they have put in to compile this rich collection and more about their daily work……

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Taking early precautions against merciless natural disasters (27/8/2017)

Severe typhoon Hato ravaged Hong Kong earlier, and its combined effect of gale force winds, torrential rain, massive waves and high tide was astonishing. The Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) had to issue Typhoon Signal number 10 for the first time since 2012. As it is the typhoon season in Hong Kong at present and typhoons may come one after another at any time, we should never let down our guard. I am very grateful to our colleagues of various departments for performing their duties properly and fully co-operating with each other during the typhoon, and to those affected for their patience and understanding. Although there were no major casualties in Hong Kong when Hato struck, we will definitely not take it for granted. I have already asked the departments under the Development Bureau to review their overall prevention and contingency work, so as to take early precautions and make improvements wherever possible to ensure public safety……

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Opening Kai San Road to link up the old and new districts of Kai Tak (20/8/2017)

The Government is committed to developing Kowloon East into a new core business district with a range of commercial, recreational and tourism facilities. Among the initiatives carried out, the Kai Tak Development (KTD) implemented since 2007 has all along played a major role in promoting the economic development of Hong Kong and revitalising the old districts nearby, including Kowloon City, Wong Tai Sin and Kwun Tong. To perform its role properly, the KTD area requires a convenient, safe, reliable and well-planned transport linkage network. A few days ago, I accompanied the Chief Executive, Mrs LAM CHENG Yuet-ngor, Carrie, to officiate at the opening ceremony of Kai San Road, a new carriageway linking the KTD area and San Po Kong, which signals that the connection between the KTD area and its neighbouring districts is turning a new page……

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Improve public piers to make them more convenient for tourists and residents alike (13/8/2017)

During holidays, many people like to visit countryside to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Hong Kong is home to the world-famous Geopark, marine parks, historical heritage, eco-tourism attractions, etc. which are extremely popular among tourists. However, many of these attractions are located in remote areas without road linkage and are only accessible by sea. This year, the Government formulated the Pier Improvement Programme (PIP). The first phase covers about 10 public piers in the New Territories and on the outlying islands. We wish to enhance their structural safety and improve the existing facilities as soon as possible, facilitate the public to visit the attractions, and meet the basic operational needs of villagers and fishermen……

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Work together to make Hong Kong an even better place (6/8/2017)

Members of political team of the new Government have gradually assumed office. Since taking office more than a month ago, I have gradually started working on various projects and can truly feel the numerous challenges and enormous responsibilities ahead. During my recent district visits to meet the public, I realised that there is rising public expectation on the Government and we must respond swiftly and accurately to the aspirations of various parties. As described by those outside the Government, the Development Bureau (DEVB) always has to handle a lot of “hot potatoes”, such as land use planning, brownfield site controversies, new town development, reclamation and land formation, works supervision as well as built heritage conservation. Therefore, I have long felt the heat of this hot kitchen whether as the Secretary or a civil servant in my former capacity……

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New Engineering Contract New Management Culture (30/7/2017)

To continuously improve citizens’ quality of life, enhance Hong Kong’s long-term competitiveness and promote our economic development, the Government has been implementing a wide range of public works projects in an orderly manner. Along with other places in the world that are striving to enhance the quality and performance of construction projects through continuous improvements to project management, Hong Kong has been developing world-class infrastructures, and in the quest we cannot afford to become content and should reinforce our strengths to maintain the leading edge. The Development Bureau (DEVB) has all along been promoting “collaborative partnership” in the implementation of public works projects, including the adoption of the “New Engineering Contract” (NEC) form to enhance management efficiency and cost effectiveness, thereby introducing a new project management culture in the construction industry. The NEC form has been implemented in public works projects for some time and it has begun to blossom and bear fruit with encouraging results……

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Precautionary flood prevention works (23/7/2017)

On the morning of 18 July, Tai Po District recorded an hourly rainfall of 70 to 80 millimetres (i.e. reaching the level of black rainstorm signal) for consecutive two hours, resulting in serious flooding in Ting Kok Village and Tai Mei Tuk Village. After the incidents, a number of departments provided immediate assistance and support to villagers being affected. Few days ago (21 July), I visited the two villages and listened to the requests of villagers and explained to them the relieving works by departments in order to ease their concerns. In the past few days, the Drainage Services Department (DSD), the Buildings Department (BD), the Water Supplies Department and the Tai Po District Office have spared no effort in dealing with the aftermath of the flooding, including urgent repairs to the damaged river sections and removal of boulders and debris washed down from upstream, so as to restore the drainage capacity of the river as soon as possible……

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Liantang/ Heung Yuen Wai Boundary Control Point – New control point, New milestone, New opportunities (16/7/2017)

A number of major infrastructure projects have been completed progressively since Hong Kong’s return to the motherland. Not only do they promote economic development and improve the livelihood of local residents, but also enhance Hong Kong’s long-term competitiveness. Among these is the Liantang/Heung Yuen Wai Boundary Control Point (LT/HYW BCP) - the seventh land-based border crossing between Hong Kong and Shenzhen, which is expected to be completed by the end of next year. Here I would like to introduce the work progress of this brand new control point and its benefits to be brought to the society......

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Master Lo Pan – continuing his legacy (9/7/2017)

Last Thursday (the thirteenth day of the sixth month in the Lunar Calendar) was the birthday of Lo Pan, also known as the Birthday of the Master (Si Fu Festival). It is an important traditional festival for the construction industry during which the practitioners pray for the success and safety at work. In the past week, I was invited to various events in celebration of the Birthday. I am pleased to see that the construction industry is highly united, and that more and more young people are willing to join the industry to support our infrastructure development, so as to help develop Hong Kong into a more liveable and workable city......

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Revitalisation of Tsui Ping River – breathing new life into our flood prevention facilities (2/7/2017)

Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to the motherland and the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. I am honoured to be appointed as the Secretary for Development (SDEV). In the days to come, I will do my very best to lead and unite some 20 000 colleagues of the nine departments under the Development Bureau (DEVB) to strive to build a better Hong Kong. The DEVB will, as in the past, continue to make earnest efforts to develop Hong Kong into an international metropolis for living and work and to increase its competitiveness. We will not only facilitate economic development, but also proactively respond to public aspirations. Building on the work of Mr Paul Chan and Mr Eric Ma, the two former SDEVs from the previous Government, I will continue to introduce our policies and explain our initiatives through “My Blog”. Here, I would like to first introduce the Revitalisation of Tsui Ping River project.……

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