Protect Government Hill and Bishop Hill - make the area a Heritage Precinct with height restrictions (Y/H4/12)
Launched: 15 June 2018
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Historic Government Hill and Bishop Hill within Old Town Central are currently threatened by a huge private hospital development proposed by Sheng Kung Hui - please support Government Hill Concern Group’s planning application to protect this historic area! Historic Government Hill and Bishop Hill within Old Town Central are currently threatened by a huge private hospital development proposed by Sheng Kung Hui - please support Government Hill Concern Group’s planning application to protect this historic area!
I support this application (Y/H4/12) for the above Site to have an “Other Specified Uses (Heritage Precinct)” zoning and impose a Building Height Restriction. I support the application for the following reasons:
1. The Historic and Architectural Appraisal commissioned by the Government for the former Central Government Offices substantiates the heritage value of the entire Application Site, including Government Hill and Bishop Hill. This application implements the Appraisal’s suggestion to create a “Special Protected Area”, and is against any significant redevelopment and protects the Area from inappropriate development.
2. The proposal also implements Planning Department’s consideration and assessment of a similar application in 2012 which provides that there be a comprehensive review of the height restrictions for Central District.
3. The redevelopment proposal by Sheng Kung Hui (SKH) of the former Central Hospital will have a detrimental impact on the historical low-rise structures and greenery landscape of the heritage cluster. This proposal seeks Town Planning Board (TPB) attention on any increase in building height and building bulk in the future. The TPB has a statutory responsibility to consider proposals to ensure good sensitive design and respecting and protecting the special characteristics of this neighbourhood.
4. There is great public concern about the environmental, heritage and traffic impact of this proposed hospital development. Central and Western District Councillors have expressed grave concern. The Development Bureau pointed out in a 2011 paper that SKH’s large-scale redevelopment would “give rise to incompatibility with the historic buildings and cause some undesirable visual impact on the surrounding areas”, and negotiated a reduction in development scale, however the current proposal by SKH for a 25-storey hospital ignores previous negotiations with Development Bureau and is an unacceptable scale of development.
5. This proposal preserves the historical building cluster and landscape for the social benefit of the general public of Hong Kong. The proposed controls are not exceptional or unnecessarily restrictive, and is in line with TPB’s previously imposed restrictions on private land relating to building height and scale in almost all GIC (Government, Institution and Community) zones on Outline Zoning Plans.