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Inquiry Needed Into Handling Of Mega Tower

Updated on Jul 07, 2008 – SCMP

I am sure other Hong Kong residents will join me in calling for a full public inquiry into the Mega Tower scandal. The conduct of the government and Hopewell is shameful and marked by secrecy.

Where are the building plans? How much open space will the public get? Why is Hopewell allowed to build higher than the ridgeline? How is a project approved 14 years ago still allowed to be built?

I would also like to ask the government how it expects Queen’s Road East and Kennedy Road to cope with the extra traffic created by the 93-storey building. At rush hour these roads are jammed. It already takes half an hour to travel the short distance eastwards. More traffic will cause queues of vehicles to pile up on Queensway and Garden Road and belch unacceptable amounts of pollution into the already filthy air. And what are we losing? A green jungle of mature trees and century-old granite walls and staircases.

Secretary for Development Carrie Lam says on her bureau’s website that she is aware of the public’s desire for a “spacious and cleaner environment, higher quality of living and preservation of heritage”. I would like to ask her how handing over public land to a developer to build a monstrosity that will worsen traffic, aggravate pollution, block views and overwhelm Wan Chai’s crowded pavements is meeting these demands? It is not surprising the government’s popularity is tumbling when it is clear Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen’s administration prefers to help the rich at the expense of everyone else.

P. Lindsay, Happy Valley

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