If you come to Hong Kong, you won’t miss visiting Central, which is more than a banking and financial area. It is a place of history, particularly for Government Hill.
Government Hill is an area covering government offices, Government House, Murray Battery, St John’s Cathedral in Central, surrounded by the Botanical Gardens and the greenery. A traditional political centre of 150 year history, it was partly vacated when the HK Government moved its headquarters and main offices to Tamar in 2011.
The government initially unveiled plans to redevelop the site, including building a shopping centre. After meeting criticisms, the plan now has been slightly modified to demolish the West Wing, an old government building on Government Hill, and allow the redevelopment to be funded by Build-Operate-Transfer, whereby a private developer would build a new building on the site, collect rent and then transfer it back to government after 20 years.
This is being met with fierce opposition from civil society which says that Government Hill is an integral cluster of buildings and the demolishment of West Wing is an attack on the integrity and history of Government Hill.
The Government Hill Concern Group, formed by 21 local conservation and environmental groups, has built this website to make their statement and explain their stance.
The booklet produced by the Group has rich history about Government Hill. Do take a look here.
And the Group is making an application to the Government to preserve the whole Government Hill. Please go to its website for the application details. If you think it is a worthy cause, please support the application by clicking here – by 11.30pm on 17 August 2012 please.