More than 100 design concepts were received to preserve the natural and cultural heritage of Tai O and to enhance its environment for the enjoyment of both local residents and visitors.
A number of these design concepts received commendations today (September 8) at the award presentation ceremony for the "Design Competition for the Revitalisation of Tai O" held at the Hong Kong Heritage Discovery Centre in Kowloon Park.
Officiating at the presentation ceremony, the Secretary for Development, Mrs Carrie Lam, said that she was very encouraged by the overwhelming response to the competition which was launched to engage the public more extensively.
"Tai O is a very unique place with distinctive cultural and natural characteristics featuring stilted houses, mangrove areas and a number of heritage buildings including the Old Tai O Police Station, which is one of the historic buildings included under the first batch of government-owned buildings to be revitalised under the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme.
"The competition entries have provided us with creative and useful ideas which would improve the natural and living environment of Tai O, as well as promote tourism and the local economy. We will fully consider these proposals when working out a holistic revitalisation plan for Tai O," she said.
Mrs Lam also expressed gratitude to the Tai O Rural Committee, professional institutes and members of the jury panel for their support and hard work in organising the competition. Their efforts have made the event a great success.
A total of 36 entries were received for the professional group and 69 for the open group of the competition. Three winning entries and five merit entries for each group were selected by the jury panel.
The winning entries will be on display at the Permanent Exhibition Gallery of the Hong Kong Heritage Discovery Centre from September 10 to 24. The exhibition is open from 10am to 6pm from Monday to Saturday (closed on Thursday), and from 10am to 7pm on Sunday and public holidays.
While planning for the overall revitalisation of Tai O, the Government is also implementing some quick-win projects to address the more imminent needs of the local community. These include upgrading pedestrian safety facilities at the Tai O public transport terminus; providing a coach park at Yim Tin; a pilot scheme to restore disused saltpans; beautifying fences east of the mangrove area; installing telescopes at the dolphin-watching pavilions at Fu Shan and Kau San Tei, and interim flood protection works to protect flood prone areas on Wing On Street.
The works for improving the fences east of the mangrove area and for installation of telescopes at Fun Shan and Kau San Tei will be completed in end 2008. Construction works of the Tai O public transport terminus and the coach park projects will commence in early 2009. For other quick-win projects, implementation will commence as soon as possible.
The design competition is jointly organised by the Development Bureau, Tai O Rural Committee, Civil Engineering and Development Department, Planning Department, Islands District Office, The Hong Kong Institute of Architects, The Hong Kong Institution of Engineers, The Hong Kong Institute of Landscape Architects, Hong Kong Institute of Planners, The Hong Kong Institute of Surveyors, The Conservancy Association, Green Power and Hong Kong Young Women's Christian Association.
Details of the competition and the winning entries are available at the event website: http://www.designcompetition-taio.com/.
Ends/Monday, September 8, 2008
Issued at HKT 20:23