Government plans to further revitalise historical buildings

Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced her plans on heritage conservation by focusing on the Revitalisation Historic Building Through Partnership Scheme in the Policy Address released today.

The 19-project scheme was established in 2007. Five batches of projects under the Revitalisation Scheme had already been taken place.

According to Antiquities Advisory Board, as at 7 September 2017, there are 1,444 historical buildings in Hong Kong, among which 955 buildings were graded as Grade I to III historic buildings .

Lui Seng Chun, a long-vacated Grade I Historic Building in Mong Kok used to be a shophouse. After undergoing basic repair and revitalisation, it now operates as a Chinese medicine and healthcare centre.

"The project is a successful one as its new function matches with residents' need," Lee Ho-yin, head of Division of Architectural Conservation Programmes at University of Hong Kong said, "Mong Kok area has an aged community, resulting in a large demand for such healthcare centre."

"The value of a building can always increase over time by effective utilisation," Lee said. "If we don't redevelop those buildings, we won't have losses. If we remove them, we may just earn a little more but the long-term loss on other aspect will be greater."

Siu Ping-lam, a 67-year-old man who has lived around Lui Seng Chun for 60 years, said the revitalization is necessary. "The building becomes very educational as its original architecture has been kept and people are allowed to visit."

"The cost for revitalisation should not be larger," said Lee, "the most important thing is to fit the building its surroundings."

"The connection between the community and the building will be closer. It will be easy to get money if the building serves the right function as it now does," Lee said, "otherwise, the preservation will not be successful and continuable."

"Those promises in Carrie Lam's policy address are good signs showing the government's determination to take heritage conservation seriously," he added.

 

《The Young Reporter》

The Young Reporter (TYR) is an English news publication produced by international journalism students at Hong Kong Baptist University. It started as a printed magazine in 1969. Today, TYR is produced across different platforms.

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