Sunday, October 19, 2008

Gov't to provide sustainable living environment for HK, says official

The Hong Kong SAR government will continue its endeavors to provide a quality and sustainable living environment for the people of Hong Kong, the Secretary for Development of Hong Kong Carrie Lam said Saturday.

Lam was speaking at the plenary session of an international symposium organized by the Skyscraper Museum in New York City, said a press release of the Hong Kong Information Service Department.

She said that Hong Kong's high density development had accommodated the city's population increase at one million per decade in the latter half of the 20th century and propelled its economic growth, while preserving the countryside for public enjoyment.

However, Lam admitted that in recent years, both the civil society and members of the public had voiced concerns about the height and bulk of buildings and their environmental and visual impact, and expressed strong aspirations for preserving heritage buildings, ceasing harbor reclamation, creating quality open space and preserving community networks and local characteristics in urban regeneration.

In response to these aspirations and to pursue a sustainable development in Hong Kong, the Government was committed to finding the right balance between economic benefits and benefits to culture, the society and the environment.

During the speech, Lam outlined in her presentation the various initiatives in reviewing development density, promulgating clear development control parameters in statutory plans, preserving and revitalizing heritage buildings, undertaking area-based revitalization projects, promoting green buildings.

Lam said that to achieve the vision of Hong Kong as Asia's world city, the Government would focus on three broad areas in working out the future blueprint of Hong Kong, namely improving a quality living environment, enhancing economic competitiveness, and strengthening links with the Chinese mainland.

Lam arrived in New York City on October 16 for a 3-day official visit.

Source: Xinhua

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