Tsuen Wan - HKU Libraries

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Tsuen Wan - HKU Libraries

INTRODUCTION SERVICES LL „ . , . . . ,. fc ... ,// environmental standards are to improve, the bulk ofThe Background 2 Water Supply 28 new housing must be provided in the new towns in the NewRoom to Grow 2 Sewerage 28 Territories...Meeting the Challenge 4 Electricity 28 For such a programme to succeed and to be acceptable toTHF RFCTNNTNCS 6 Telephones 28 the potential inhabitants, three things seem to me essential.Gas 28 First, good communications with the old urban areas...THE FIRST HALFSecondly, the housing in the new towns must be accompaniedThe Setting 10 IMPLEMENTATION by a full ration of what is essential to modern life: medical,„ . ,. ** ," " * ir. r*. _, . A ., ' ^ and secondary as well as primary educational facilities, parksExisting Development 10 The General Approach 30 and playgroif ndSf police stations, markets, fire and ambulanceIndustry 12 The New Town Project Team 30 stations, community centres and much else.THE TOWN PLAN Development Process 30 Thirdly, there must be work, and so sites for private com-The Development Programme 30 mercial and residential development.Land Use 14 The Present Stage of Development 32 Thesetownsin fact must be built as a whole..99Tsuen Wan North 14 Developed Areas 32Tsing Yi 14 Partially Developed Areas 32 H- E - the Governor, Sir Murray MacLehose,Population 14 New Development 34K - C - M - G " K.C.V.O., M.B.E. announcing theconserving the Landscape 16 Concision.. i:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: 35 ^ Js.Sk*1the Legislat1ve CouncilHOUSINGPublic HousingPrivate Housing1818APPENDIX NO 1Programme 36Village Housing 18APPENDIX NO 2COMMUNITY FACILITIESAdministration and Civic Centre 20Inquiries about Tsuen Wan 36Recreation 20 LIST OF MAPS AND DIAGRAMSEducation20 Fig l _ Lo cationSocial Welfare 21 Fig. 2—Physical ReliefMedical Care 22 Fig 3 —Land FormationMarkets-.. 22 Fig 4 _Land UsePolice22••Fig. 5 —Population Build-upFire and Ambulance Services 23 Fj g 6 _p u blic HousingEMPLOYMENT AND INDUSTRY 24S- 7 —Private Housing and VillagesFig. 8 —Tsuen Wan Civic Centre•^^^^^^•M^^^H^^^^^M^^HHOHMHCOMMUNICATIONS Fig. 9 -Recreation A11 , . A. . , ,A11Roads 26 Fig. 10-Community Facilities of money mentioned m the textWater Transport 26 Fig. 11-Industry are in Hong Kong dollars.Mass Transit : 26 Fig. 12—Communications HK$10=US$2^=Stg. £1-(approximate)Railways 26 Fig. 13—Development Areas ^••^•••••••^^•^•^^^••^••••ttM


The entrance to Sam Tung Uk -village, ancestral homeof the Chan family.Below: Inside the courtyard of the village's "Tse Tong"(family temple).At right: A general view of Sam Tung Uk (centre). Behind it willgrow the future commercial centre of Tsuen Wan NewTown. The 190-year-old village itself will be preservedas a museum.Although there is archaeological evidence ofhuman occupation in Tsuen Wan* in the periodbefore Christ, the evidence is of Chinese influencerather than of Chinese settlements, and little isknown of these early aboriginal people.In 1955, the Li Cheng Uk Tomb was discoveredin Cheung Sha Wan at the southernextremity of the Tsuen Wan New Town area. Itwas constructed in the period of the Tang HanDynasty (A.D. 25—A.D. 220), and was a find ofconsiderable importance in the history of HongKong, because it determined that the spread ofChinese settlement in the area began in the 2nd or3rd century A.D.In the 13th century, the Mongol invasionforced the young Sungt emperor Ti Ch'eng (whoreigned from 1276 to 1278) to flee southwards withhis entourage. In late 1277 he reached Ch'ien Wan,the present-day Tsuen Wan. (Another 698 yearswere to pass before a second royal visit occurred—that of Queen Elizabeth II, of Britain, in 1975).Legend has it that Emperor Ch'eng proceeded tothe peninsula south of the hills which separateTsuen Wan from present-day Kowloon, and wasresponsible, albeit indirectly, for the naming of thepeninsula. In the area there were eight hills, eachreputed by folk legend to house a dragon. As theChinese Emperor was also symbolically revered asa dragon, the name "nine dragons" ("kau lung")originated, which in due course became"Kowloon".In those days, Tsuen Wan was probably stilllargely inhabited by local tribes, but these indigenouspeople were being gradually infiltrated byChinese farmers from the northern parts of KwangTung, and from Fukien. However, there is little orno evidence of this early and irregular Chinesesettlement, because in the period 1662-1669 mostof the inhabitants of the Hong Kong region wereaffected by the mass evacuation from the ChinaCoast. This draconian measure, adopted by thenew Manchu government to deny assistance toKoxinga, the pro-Ming pirate ruler of Formosa(Taiwan), led to the extinction of many villages.Tsuen Wan is believed to have been decimatedby Koxinga and it was not until the late 17thcentury that it began to be re-populated. At thebeginning of the Ch'ien Lung period (1736-1795)A'ke Min, Viceroy of Kwang Tung and Kwangsi,actively encouraged the migration of Hakka peoplein order to cultivate the southern extremities ofhis domain. Specific dates of such settlements canbe traced by the founding of villages such as YauKam Tau ("village of pomelos and tangerines") in1685, and Kwan Man Hau ("village of closing thedoor") in 1705.The year 1730 marked the founding of othervillages in Tsuen Wan, such as Kwu Hang, ChuenLung and Chai Wan Kok. From that date, othersettlements sprouted up, and a steady stream ofHakka people came southwards to establish ascore of new villages in the district. These agrarianpeople were the first migrants, and contrast sharplywith the large wave of "industrial" migrants whoarrived after the founding of the People's Republicof China, in 1949.


Hau - yueen of Heaven ana protectress of jistiermen.Below: Buddha shrine in the Sai Fong Chi Monastery.At right: The hillside at Tsuen Wan North is dotted withtemples and monasteries, many of them favouritespiritual retreats for city dwellers. The area, overlookingthe main development, will be preserved.When the New Territories were leased toBritain in 1898, the only forerunners of TsuenWan's later industrial development were 24 incensepowderfactories, powered by water wheels locatedon the banks of the many streams coming downfrom Tai Mo Shan.At this time, Tsuen Wan had a population ofabout 3,000 people—quite a large number for thosedays—and supported a small market town at itscentre. Farming, fishing, pig-raising and grasscuttingwere the other main means of livelihood.Bean-stick factories had also been established.Many villagers were then working abroad, asshown very clearly by an old "repair tablet" in alocal Tin Hau Temple, which records the namesof financial contributors from all over the worldamong those who had helped pay the costs ofrefurbishing the temple. Tsuen Wan's society wasalready well developed, and many of the villageshad ancestral halls and schools. The settlementswere controlled by leading villagers, who metoccasionally to administer the affairs of the subdistrict.By 1912, extensive pineapple cultivation hadsprung up in Tsuen Wan, thanks to the nearbymarkets in Kowloon. At this time, the area wasstill by modern standards sparsely populated, andwild animals such as deer were common. Wild catsand wolves were regularly sighted, and prowlingtigers were not unknown.The year 1919 saw the completion of CastlePeak Road, between Tsuen Wan and Sham ShuiPo in Kowloon, but industrial development didnot immediately follow. For it was not until 1926that work commenced on land reclamation forindustrial use in Tsuen Wan West. This wasfollowed in 1932 by the completion of a reclamationadjacent to the Texaco Peninsula, on whichCaltex oil storage tanks now stand. Early in the1930's a number of manufacturing industries wereestablished, and from that time, apart from theperiod of Japanese occupation in World War II,the town has experienced almost continual industrialexpansion. By 1961 there were nearly 250industrial establishments, with a labour forcetotalling almost 24,000 mainly engaged in theweaving, spinning and enamelware industries,brought to Hong Kong in 1948-1949 by Shanghaiindustrialists.In 1930 the population was in the region of5,000; at the time of the 1961 Census it stood atmore than 84,000. Some 11,570 other people wereliving in houseboats and junks in the Tsuen Wanarea, and a good proportion of this floatingpopulation worked in shore-based industries ratherthan in the fishing fleet. Housing developmentcould not keep pace with this rapid industrialexpansion, and the 1961 Census indicated thatsome 58,000 people were inadequately housed.In February 1961, the first housing block ofTai Wo Hau Estate was completed by the PublicWorks Department for the now defunct ResettlementDepartment. Tai Wo Hau, which at presenthouses some 46,000 people, is destined to have ashort history, for work will soon commence onits total redevelopment, in order to bring it in linewith modern-day standards. The original estatehas now served its purpose, having been built ata time when expediency was the only planningguideline.* The name Tsuen Wan derives from the much earliername "Ch'ien Wan", which means "shallow bay" in theCantonese dialect. The latter is listed in old Chinesegazetteers of the Hong Kong area, and is also inscribedon the bell in the Tin Hau Temple at Tsuen Wan, whichis dated 1744. The present name "tsuen" means a typeof fragrant plant.t The Sung Dynasty (A.D. 960—A.D. 1279).


The SettingTsuen Wan New Town comprises three districts—TsuenWan and Kwai Chung on themainland, and the island of Tsing Yi. Both TsuenWan and Kwai Chung lie on the south-west coastof the New Territories, some 14 kilometres (8.5miles) by road from Kowloon Point and about 10kilometres (6 miles) by sea from the CentralDistrict of Hong Kong. The island of Tsing Yi isseparated from Tsuen Wan and Kwai Chung bythe 0.8 kilometre (0.5 mile) wide Rambler Channel.The total area of the new town is some2,536 hectares (6,266 acres) of which 65.7 per cent(1,666 hectares; 4,117 acres) is the main developmentarea.The new town is surrounded by hills anddominated by Tai Mo Shan, the highest point inHong Kong, which rises 958 metres (3,144 feet)above sea level. The upper reaches of the mountainare sparsely vegetated, but its lower foothills, whichform the immediate backdrop to the town, arewell covered with trees and shrubs (Fig. 2).The northern boundary of the town is thecatchwater, which runs along the lower foothills ofTai Mo Shan. Below the catchwater in more easilyaccessible areas live thousands of squatters inshantytowns scattered around traditional Chinesevillages, cultivated areas, temples and monasteries.The main concentration of this polyglot communityis in the Shing Mun Valley, leading down toCastle Peak Road.To the east, the town is overshadowed by thesteeply-rising western fringe of the Kowloon foothills,and to the west the hills run steeply down tothe sea.Existing DevelopmentIn 1963 a plan for the development of TsuenWan was approved by the Governor-in-Council.The plan envisaged an ultimate population for thenew town of about 1.2 million people, to be attainedby 1978, and encompassed two large reclamationschemes, at Tsuen Wan and Kwai Chung (Fig. 3).With the exception of one or two isolatedsites, building development has now been completedon the Tsuen Wan reclamation scheme.Reclamation work in Kwai Chung was completedin 1975, and this area, for the most part, remainsundeveloped with the exception of a partial roadsystem, the Kwai Fong public housing estate, andsome private housing developments.The principal area from which fill materialwas taken for the Kwai Chung reclamation hasnow been developed, and the final stage of the newKwai Shing public housing estate, which stands onthe formed platform of land, was substantiallycompleted in 1975. The Kwai Shing estate, whenfully occupied, will house some 72,500 people.Early housing development was completedwithin the framework of the population figure of1.2 million, proposed in 1963. However, laterdevelopments such as Kwai Shing were designedto higher standards in recognition of the need to10


ana isui Koaa, mam snapping street oj presentdayTsuen Wan.At right: (above) Tai Wo Hau, the first Public HousingEstate in Tsuen Wan. It is to be redeveloped.(Below) Hanging out to dry - the washingand the dinner.provide improved living conditions. These changeshave resulted in the reduction of populationdensities and the consequent reduction in theultimate population of the new town.The existing town is served by two trunkroutes from Kowloon, 14 kilometres (9 miles)away—the Castle Peak and Kwai Chung roads.Both are adequate for the present volume oftraffic. There is also a ferry service linking TsuenWan with the Central District of Hong Kong.In the early 1970's work began on the constructionof three container terminals in Kwai ChungSouth. These terminals are now in operation andtwo additional terminals are due for completion in1976, The total reclaimed land area on which theterminals stand is 65 hectares (162.5 acres); thetotal berthing capacity is 2,225 metres (2,431 yds.).The development of Tsing Yi Island has beena joint venture between the government and privatedevelopers. In the early 1960's the governmentgranted leases of seabed on the east and southcoasts of Tsing Yi. These leases were developed asoil tank farms, a power station, and a smallnumber of industrial undertakings—all landintensivedevelopments at first requiring marineaccess only. Soon, however, the need to transporttheir products by cable, pipe and road from theisland encouraged these industries to combine inthe building of a bridge across the RamblerChannel. The government contributed to thisproject by building the approach roads on eitherside.IndustryEarly private development in Tsuen Wan wasmainly industrial, and over the years industrialdevelopment has kept ahead of the demand foremployment. Factory space is still intensivelyutilised and although the building of factories hasslowed recently, there are still many factories whichtransport workers from Kowloon each day.Tsuen Wan's top five industries in 1974 were:. Number ofIndustryNumber of WorkersEstablishmentsTextilesClothingPlasticsMetal ProductsElectrical/Electronic544425485531Employed41,91019,7208,5507,58056 4,260These five industries then employed some 86per cent of the total industrial workforce of 95,200.Textiles and garment manufacture still remain byfar the largest industries in Tsuen Wan, whileenamelware manufacture and wig making, once inthe top five, are now almost non-existent.It is interesting to note that in 1974, outof a total industrial floor space of 2.42 millionsquare metres (26.1 million square feet) only 4.6per cent remained vacant. This figure suggests thatrecession has not hit Tsuen Wan as hard as it hasmany other areas, although it should be notedthat numbers of employees were laid off, and shiftwork decreased.A quick snack at an outdoor food stall


which rises on terraced platforms cut into the hillside.'Earth from the hillside was used to reclaim the newindustrial area at centre left — shown here in temporaryuse as a storage area.14Land UseIn the rush to meet the pressing needs ofhousing and industry, the early development ofTsuen Wan and Kwai Chung was basic in conception.There was intensive use of formed land andlittle land was reserved for environmental improvementor to provide community facilities such asopen spaces and schools.The need to obtain the maximum amount of"fill" material for reclamation has dictated the wayin which the terraces (or platforms) for publichousing have been formed. The proposed patternof land use in Tsuen Wan has, therefore, beendetermined largely by this consideration.Thus the new town's planners have beenseverely limited in their endeavours to combineexisting and proposed developments into a viablecommunity.Tsuen Wan new town is now being planned toaccommodate 885,000 people by 1986. Within theoutline zoning shown on Fig. 4 detailed planseither exist, or are in preparation, for all areas ofthe new town. These plans show the road layouts,the sites reserved for residential, commercial andindustrial development, and the sites allocated forcommunity facilities such as clinics, schools, fireand police stations, welfare buildings, open spaces,etc. These facilities will come on-stream in tempowith the development of new residential andindustrial areas in order to extend the new townprogressively as a balanced community.In the new town's developed and partiallydevelopedareas there is very limited opportunityto remedy past omissions, but the new areas ofdevelopment in Tsuen Wan North and Tsing Yioffer more scope for planners to produceenlightened and integrated town layouts.Tsuen Wan NorthThe important part of the Tsuen Wan Northdevelopment area is a new town centre, which isto be built in the lower reaches of the Shing MunValley, immediately adjacent to the Castle PeakRoad. The town centre will be linked to existingdevelopment south of Castle Peak Road by aseries of pedestrian walk-ways and a new gradeseparatedroad system.The total population envisaged for thisdevelopment area is approximately 120,000 people,of whom almost 50,000 will be accommodated inpublic housing. The main concentration of privatehousing will be in the town centre and to the west,where populations of approximately 30,000 and40,000 respectively are projected.Tsing YiOn Tsing Yi Island the projected populationfigure is approximately 185,000 people by 1986, ofwhom nearly 20,000 will be accommodated in asmall town centre (Page 15). To the south and west,overlooking the town centre, are two areas whichwill be set aside for public housing estates designedto house 65,000 and 80,000 people respectively.These new housing estates will be dividedfrom the town centre by natural slopes or terracedvillage housing, and there will be direct pedestrianaccess from the housing estates through theseareas to the town centre. The main road systemwill consist of an upper circular road serving theestates and a lower circular road enclosing thetown centre, which will be planned around a seriesof pedestrian precincts.In addition, Tsing Yi will contribute a largepart of Hong Kong's total commitment to diversificationof industry. Although great reliance willstill be placed on the normal flatted* factory toprovide job opportunities for the majority ofworkers, it is planned to develop large tracts ofland around the coastline for new types of industry,mainly land-intensive, in order to provide HongKong with a broader industrial base.PopulationThe new town is now planned to accommodate885,000 people. By the end of 1975 its populationhad reached almost 500,000, with an averageannual growth rate of 26,000 (Fig. 5).In Tsuen Wan New Town there are morepeople in the under-20 age group than in otherareas of Hong Kong.In March, 1975, for example, it was estimatedthat in Tsuen Wan 48.7 per cent of the population* A compartmentised factory building used by manydifferent industrial undertakings.


engineers and architects discusses the- development ofthe new town.At right: On this site will be built the western half of the TsuenWan New Town Centre. The access road under constructionin the foreground roughly follows the centreline of the proposed Town Centre.fell into this category, whereas the overall figurefor Hong Kong was 43.6 per cent.By 1985 it is anticipated that the numbers inthis age group in Tsuen Wan will have reducedand the margin will have narrowed; the TsuenWan figure will then be closer to the estimatedHong Kong overall figure of 37 per cent.Within other age groups, the Tsuen Wanpercentages already approximate the Hong Kongoverall figures; thus, a balanced age structurewithin the new town should soon be attained.Taking into account the projected populationgrowth in Tsuen Wan, the number of children ofSecondary school age (12 years to 18 years) isexpected to remain fairly constant. The projectedincrease is only 3,000 over 10 years, from anestimated base figure of 83,000 in 1975. It shouldbe noted, however, that although the difference ismarginal, a peak of about 108,000 is expected in1978-79.Conserving the LandscapeUntil the early 1970's, little consideration wasgiven to conserving natural features within the newtown's newly developed areas. While these omissionsof the past are irredeemable, Tsuen Wan isfortunately blessed with a natural backdrop ofhills, mostly wooded, and dotted with numeroustemples. To some extent, the scenic value of thesehills is compensatory.One of the most attractive features within thenew town's existing developed area lies alongCastle Peak Road to the east of its junction withTexaco Road. Here is located some attractivemature landscaping, both natural and man-made.Within each of the new development areas,great care is being exercised to preserve anyattractively-grouped trees; a graphic example ofthis technique may be seen in the Shing MunValley between the two proposed public housingestates of Chung Shan and Shing On. The areabetween these two estates is zoned for open space,and the zoning was primarily dictated by thepresence of a large group of mature trees.On Tsing Yi, the retention of such naturalfeatures as wooded spurs within proposed villageresite areas will enhance the backdrop to theproposed town centre (opposite).As a general principle, Tsuen Wan's plannershave made a welcome departure from the normalHong Kong practice of cladding excavated hillsideswith a type of plaster.The excavation of hillsides will still continue,but new sites will be formed on more gentle slopesin order to alter the natural contours of the landas little as possible. This will permit re-planting ofvegetation on the slopes.


in 1V75.Below: Government-built village housing to accommodateformer residents of the old Kwan Mun Hau and Hoi Pavillages.Public HousingIn Tsuen Wan New Town, public housing willaccommodate 75 per cent of the projected population(approximately 660,000 people) which is ahigher proportion than that in Hong Kong's othernew towns at Tuen Mun and Sha Tin, due chieflyto the existence in Tsuen Wan of several of theolder, higher population density housing estates(Fig. 6).The first public housing estate to be built inTsuen Wan was Tai Wo Hau, which consists of19 of the old Mark I/II* resettlement blocks eachaccommodating more than 2,000 people. Thisestate, which at present houses 46,000 people, isdue to be redeveloped by 1986, when the populationwill be reduced to 29,000.The Tai Wo Hau estate was built by theArchitectural Office of the Public Works Departmentwhich has been responsible for building mostof Tsuen Wan's public housing. Concurrent withP.W.D.'s production of "basic standard" publichousing, the Hong Kong Housing Authority andthe Housing Society have been building estates ofa slightly higher standard. As it has been stipulatedthat all new public housing estates in Hong Kongare to be built to standards set by the HousingAuthority, that body is now taking over the responsibilityfor constructing the majority of the newestates, as can be seen in the table on page 19.Private HousingAbout 25 per cent of Tsuen Wan's projectedpopulation (more than 220,000 people) will live inprivate housing (Fig. 7). Most of them will live inhigh population density residential developmentsbuilt by private developers for sale or rental.Housing in this category—almost without exception—takes the form of high-rise buildings designed toexploit the site to the maximum, with the lowerfloors allocated for commercial use. The morerecently-developed areas in the new town have beenplanned around central squares flanked by towerblocks, which create a more "open" effect than thelong terraces of tenement houses so typical of TsuenWan's older areas.The type of flat made available by developerswill vary according to the market demand, but thepresent trend is for small (about 40 to 50 squaremetres, or 432 to 540 square feet) self-containedflats able to accommodate a single family. Thisconcept has replaced the old-style flat whichcomprised one large room sub-divided into anumber of family rooms or small cubicles.Village HousingWhen the development of the new town makesit necessary to clear existing traditional villages, itis the government's practice to build new homesfree of charge for the home-owners thus displaced(Fig. 7). A single such "replacement" house occupiesa site of about 65 square metres (702 square feet)and the first resited homes were gabled two-storeystructures built for the residents of Kwan MunHau Village. Later, improved designs weredeveloped; these houses were two-and-a-halfstoreys high, which included a small mezzaninefloor known locally as a "cockloft." This type ofhouse, with a flat roof, has been provided for partof the redeveloped Hoi Pa Village.The latest design (the prototype has yet to bebuilt in Tsuen Wan) has three storeys and is 25feet high—the same height as the Hoi Pa type.Mark I/II resettlement blocks are the original eightstoreypublic housing blocks built in the mid 1950's asa quick solution to the squatter problem. The blockshave no lifts and entire familes occupied small rooms andshared the communal toilet and cooking facilities oneach floor.


20Administration and Civic CentreGovernment departments involved in therunning of Tsuen Wan are at present located inseveral different parts of the new town, and someoperate directly from the existing urban area.Work is to commence in 1977 on a newGovernment Office Building near the waterfront inthe built-up section of Tsuen Wan (Fig. 8). Thisbuilding will enable government services to becentralised.Plans are also under way for a new busterminus building which will incorporate a multistoreycar park and an elevated pedestrian walkwayand garden.Initially, the new government building willfulfil certain civic functions, such as providingmeeting facilities for local cultural groups. In thelonger term, it is proposed to build a new CivicCentre as part of the new Town Centre locatednorth of Castle Peak Road. This building willincorporate a theatre, library, museum and artgallery.Recreation—The PresentRecreational facilities of various sizes andtypes are being provided throughout Tsuen WanNew Town (Fig. 9).In Hong Kong, most of the "active" recreationalareas are hard-surfaced with asphalt.Grassed surfaces would not be able to sustain theconstant wear from thousands of pairs of feet.In Tsuen Wan, the Yeung Uk sports ground—which incorporates an athletics track—is anexception to this rule. It is grassed, but its use fororganised activities is restricted, and specificbookings must be made for sporting events.Hard-surfaced mini-soccer pitches are verypopular in Tsuen Wan and it is not uncommon tosee as many as 50 players involved in five differentgames—on what is supposed to be an area for 14players. Somewhat abbreviated soccer pitches are,therefore, the order of the day; and goal postsusually consist of a small pile of clothes, or perhapsa couple of tins.Basketball is also very popular, but there islittle organised co-ordination of basketball events,and most of the games which take place in publicareas are spontaneous.Recreation—The FutureThe new town's planners have alreadyprovided many basketball courts in existing schoolplaygrounds and public open spaces.New recreational developments now beingimplemented in private residential areas in KwaiChung feature central squares, which will bedeveloped at various levels and will incorporatefountains, shrubbery, children's playgrounds, andfacilities for just sitting around.The largest proposed open space in TsuenWan New Town will be at Kwai Chung South,where the Gin Drinkers Bay Controlled RefuseTip is to be redeveloped.This is an area of about 26 hectares (65 acres),rising to a height of some 26 metres (85 feet) abovethe surrounding reclamation. For the most part, itwill be developed as a botanical garden.In October, 1975 an outdoor swimming poolcomplex was opened in Kwai Chung South,comprising an Olympic pool, a diving pool andseveral training pools. A smaller swimming poolcomplex is now being planned for Kwai ChungNorth; this complex will incorporate a heatedcovered pool, so that swimming pool facilities willbe available all the year round.The country park adjoining Shing MunReservoir (Fig. 9) is a favourite recreational areafor Tsuen Wan residents, and weekend visitors.Recently new trails have been opened up in thepark and specific sites have been set aside aspicnic areas, and equipped with barbecue pits,benches and tables.The hills surrounding Tsuen Wan offer manylocales for the very popular local health practicesof taking morning walks and doing calisthenics—"kung-fu" boxing movements done in disciplinedslow-motion. The favoured location for thesepursuits is traditionally on high ground.Religious festivals are often celebrated inTsuen Wan by live entertainments and during themost important festivals there is usually an openairperformance of Chinese opera.EducationSchool facilities at Tsuen Wan range from thenurseries and kindergartens provided by privateorganisations to a technical institute which openedin September, 1975. The institute has a dailycapacity for 1,300 students.In Hong Kong, free primary education isextended to all children but usually on a bi-sessionalbasis.* By the middle of 1975 there were 1,165primary school classrooms in Tsuen Wan, and ofthese about 350 classrooms were not accommodatedin buildings specifically designed asschools. In Tai Wo Hau public housing estate, forexample, about 260 classrooms are accommodated


Wan swimming pool complex.in structures on rooftops. However, this estate isnow to be redeveloped with a full range of up-todateschool facilities, including three primaryschools.Compared to primary education, facilities forsecondary education are not so well developed. Atpresent, Tsuen Wan has 465 secondary schoolclassrooms, including 174 classrooms in privateschools. More than 20 more secondary schools arerequired to meet the targets set by the 1974 GovernmentWhite Paper on Education.t The governmentproposes to build 10 of these schools in conjunctionwith public housing estates, and the remainder willbe built by private organisations aided by governmentsubsidies.In addition a site of approximately twohectares (5 acres) has been reserved for a polytechnicin the town centre area.Social WelfareThere are four main buildings in Tsuen WanNew Town which house social welfare activities:(a) Princess Alexandra Community Centre,the home of nine separate groups,(b) Shek Lei Estate Welfare Building, whichhouses six groups,(c) the Caritas Social Centre, which in termsof usage is probably the most activelysupported,and(d) the Lady MacLehose Centre.The first two concerns are run by the governmentand the others by private sponsorship. Fortunately,Hong Kong has been blessed with numerousvoluntary and non-profit making organisationswhich have made, and will continue to make,substantial contributions to the provision of socialwelfare facilities. This applies in Tsuen Wan, so


22the full financial outlay for the new town's socialwelfare does not fall entirely on the Hong KongGovernment.In addition to the social welfare activitiesundertaken in the four buildings mentioned above,there are 44 other outlets in Tsuen Wan, mostlysponsored by church organisations, and almost 30per cent of these are concentrated in the Tai WoHau public housing estate.Redevelopment of this estate is scheduled tobegin in 1976, and will disrupt these services. Butit is hoped that the existing pattern of socialwelfare, built up over almost 15 years, will be ableto be re-established in the new Estate WelfareBuilding to be constructed as part of the newestate.Within all of the new public housing areas(Fig. 10), certain community facilities will beconstructed, such as community halls and estatewelfare buildings.This will create, at the outset, an opportunityfor new residents to establish their identities withinthe estate, and to communicate with their newneighbours.Medical CareTsuen Wan now boasts its own generalhospital—the newly opened 1,320-bed PrincessMargaret Hospital—which is situated on Lai KingHeadland in the very south of Kwai Chung.The hospital has excellent road links with allparts of Tsuen Wan, on a regional basis, servingnot only the town but also the western part ofKowloon and the New Territories.In addition, there are two existing polyclinics—the South Kwai Chung Jockey Club Polyclinicand the Lady Trench Polyclinic, in Sha Tsui Road.Although the latter operates as a polyclinic, it wasdesigned as a smaller urban clinic. There are twoexisting urban clinics in Tsuen- Wan, and twomore have been proposed—one at Lei Muk Shue,and the other at Ha Kwai Chung.There are two existing private hospitals—the150-bed Hong Kong Adventist Hospital in WestTsuen Wan, and the 100-bed Yan Chai Hospital,in central Tsuen Wan.A 1,300-bed mental hospital to help serveHong Kong as a whole is being provided adjacentto the Princess Margaret Hospital.MarketsThe regional market centre in Tsuen WanNew Town is located in the Tsuen Wan town areaproper, where there is one new market and twoold market areas. These two old areas, especiallythe one in Yeung Uk Road, have expandedsteadily over the years, and certain minor localroads are currently being completely blocked bymarketing activities.The two old market areas retail productsranging from bedding and clothing to live chickens,and are similar to the traditional market areaswhich exist in Kowloon, and on Hong Kong Island.To replace the present sprawl, two newmarkets are to be built, and although to the casualvisitor the street scene will seem to have lost a lotof its vitality, the residents of Tsuen Wan willgenerally welcome the change.The construction of new buildings will meanthat residents will not be disturbed by the raucouscalls of vendors or forced to tolerate piles of refusein the streets, and will be able to enjoy the clearedspaces outside their homes.Generally, with the exception of the Shek Leihousing estate, other areas of the town are wellprovided with marketing outlets, and several newmarkets are being constructed as part of the newpublic housing estates. In Shek Lei, there are noproper market facilities, so temporary marketshave been established on areas within the estatewhich were originally intended to serve as openareas between buildings. The lack of marketingfacilities in this estate (housing almost 70,000people) is a legacy of the days when basic housingwas considered the first of the government'spriorities—an attitude which lasted until the late1960's. However, it is now planned to use levelswithin the estate to form a large two-storey structure,with car parking located on the ground floor,marketing on the second, and recreational "sittingout" areas positioned around light wells on theroof. This idea will greatly ease managementproblems within the estate, return the open areasto their intended use, and dispel itinerant traderswho, in certain blocks, set up their shops even inlift lobbies.PoliceIn early 1976 a new divisional police stationopened in South Kwai Chung. Previously, allpolice activities were centred on the existingdivisional station in Castle Peak Road, TsuenWan. The new town's population growth over thelast few years warranted another police station,and the splitting of the new town into two policedivisions will localise the police presence.In addition, two sub-divisional police stationsare being planned for Tsing Yi and Sheung Kwai


i ui inuiivn unu—uuiming vvui rv jut me,—rrn—i^vvui \^nung'Public Housing Estate. Public housing will provide homesfor 75 per cent of the new town's projected populationof 885,000 people by 1985.The General ApproachThe development of Hong Kong's three newtowns involves practically all branches of thegovernment, but the three organisations principallyinvolved are the New Territories Administration,the Housing Authority (together with its executivearm the Housing Department), and the PublicWorks Department.The New Territories Administration is representedin Tsuen Wan by the District Officerand his staff, who are charged with acquiring theland required for the new town's development,obtaining the co-operation of the existing population,and disposing of land made available by thedevelopment works. The District Office alsooversees the general management of the new townto ensure that all community services develop intempo with the increasing population.The Housing Department is responsible forthe control of squatters, the clearance of peoplefrom land required for development, and thebuilding and management of public housingestates.The Public Works Department is responsiblefor the preparation of the new town's developmentplans, for all the engineering works required toform and service the land, and for the constructionof all buildings, sports grounds, swimming poolsand other community facilities to be provided bythe government. Within the P.W.D., the responsibilityfor the overall planning, co-ordination, andprogramming of the Tsuen Wan New Towndevelopment is the responsibility of the ProjectManager and his team of experts.The New Town Project TeamThe project team, under the control of theProject Manager, consists of three senior professionalofficers, a Chief Planning Officer, a ChiefEngineer and a Senior Architect, together with asmall supporting staff of professional, technicaland clerical officers.The project team is responsible for:. the planning of the whole of the new towndevelopment area. the programming of all works for the stageddevelopment of the new town, within thefinancial resources made available by thegovernment, and. the co-ordination, implementation, andprogress of the development programme bythe Highways, Civil Engineering andArchitectural Offices of the P.W.D., theconsulting engineers and private architects,the Housing Department and the NewTerritories Administration.The Development ProcessThe development process follows a logicalprogression, which begins with the preparation ofengineering and planning studies. An overalldevelopment plan is then prepared and implemented—thenecessary land is acquired andcleared, sites are formed, and essential engineeringservices, roads, drains, sewers and utility servicesare provided.Formed and serviced land then becomesavailable for building developments, such as publicand private housing, community facilities, andcommercial and industrial buildings. All suchbuilding developments are constructed accordingto a specific schedule, so that at the completion ofeach stage a proper balance may be maintainedbetween population (in both public and privatehousing), job opportunities, community facilitiesand commercial activities.The Development ProgrammeCo-ordination and programming of all aspectsof the new town's physical development may bechecked in the New Town Development Programme,which is up-dated annually.The programme takes into account:. the progress made in the past year. the financial resources to be made availableby the government. the changes in the government's policieswhich affect the planning and provision ofthe new town's facilities, and. changes in the speed and direction of privateinvestment.In the New Town Development Programme,the new town is divided into development areas,and all the works required for the development ofeach area are listed; their total estimated costconstitutes the financial "package" for that area.This "package" provides for all of the activitiesrequired for the complete development of the area.Related activities can then be easily identified andprogrammed in a practical sequence, and facilitiescan be provided to match the anticipated populationbuild-up.The programme covers a 10-year period andincludes detailed financial forecasts for the firsthalf of this period. Through the use of the"package" technique, the committed and follow-upexpenditures may be assessed, and new "packages"may then be programmed according to the availabilityof funds.


dumping, mil provide a major recreational area.In the background, a new bridge links the mainlandto the growing industrial and residentialareas of Tsing Yi Island.The Present Stage of DevelopmentWhen the first comprehensive New TownDevelopment Programme was produced in 1974,Tsuen Wan New Town was already half developedand had more industrial developments and jobopportunities than the population required.Therefore, it has not been necessary to ensurethat each "package" contains enough industrialdevelopment to balance the residential development.The New Town can be divided into three maintypes of developmental areas (Fig. 13):(i) Developed areas, where the majority ofland is already developed, but where theavailable community facilities fall belowthe present approved standards. In theseareas the main task is to rectify the omissionsof the past by providing newfacilities—or, in some cases, replacingsub-standard facilities.(ii) Partially developed areas where substantialdevelopment has taken place butfurther development is in progress,(iii) New development areas where majorprojects have recently commenced, or areplanned for the future.Developed AreasTsuen Wan CentralTsuen Wan Central has a population ofabout 70,000, and was developed in the late1950's and early 1960's, when a minimum ofcommunity facilities were provided. Only smallareas of undeveloped land remain—most ofwhich are illegally occupied by squatter huts,shops, workshops, hawkers, and cooked-foodstalls. Clearing these areas is difficult and timeconsuming. One traditional village—Hoi Paisin this area, and is subject to flooding afterheavy rain because it is at a lower level thanthe new development. Resiting of this villageis planned to commence in 1978, and its removalwill release land needed as open space and thesite for a primary school. Some of this landwill also be sold for residential and commercialdevelopment. The major development plannedfor this area is a new government office blockand an associated public car park, a bus terminusand a ferry pier. All of these facilities will begrouped around an elevated pedestrian square andgarden. Two markets and a number of cookedfoodbazaars are also scheduled to be built sometime between 1976 and 1980.Kwai Chung NorthKwai Chung North contains three majorpublic housing estates—Shek Yam, Shek Lei andLei Muk Shue—together with areas of privateresidential and industrial development. The populationof this area by the end of 1975 was estimatedat 145,000.There were only minimal facilities in thisarea, so the development programme providesfor the construction of numerous local openspaces, markets and cooked-food bazaars, aplayground equipped with a running track, aswimming pool complex, schools, a fire station,an ambulance depot, a clinic and a communityhall.Kwai Chung South (North and East Sections)This area was the first to be developed in theKwai Chung Reclamation and includes fourpublic housing estates with a total population of152,000. Private residential development occupies3 hectares (7.5 acres) and industrial developmentoccupies 19 hectares (47 acres). The main facilitiesto be provided in this area are local open space,community halls, and cooked-food stalls.Partially Developed AreasKwai Chung South (South and West Sections)Work on the Kwai Shing public housing estate(which has a population projection of 72,440people by 1977) is well advanced, and the estateis partially occupied.Land formation and engineering works aresubstantially completed, and a swimming poolcomplex and a technical institute were completedduring 1975. The area includes the sites of anumber of secondary schools which are programmedfor construction before 1980.Open space facilities in the area will includethe Kwai Chung Recreation Ground, which willincorporate a full-sized soccer pitch, a runningtrack, a 1,500-seat stand, and facilities for athleticsand ball games.Kwai Chung ReclamationThis area has already been formed and roadsand services are now being provided so thatthe land can be sold for permanent industrialdevelopment. Part of the area has been reservedfor a projected Mass Transit System depot; thesouthern half is occupied by the container terminal

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