The Chief Executive of Hong Kong, Secretary for Development,
Queen’s Pier was demolished in 2007 as part of the Central reclamation. It has since been stored in a government storage facility on Lantau Island. Now nine years later the Development Bureau offers three options with minor differences in design details for the re-assembly of Queen’s Pier between piers no. 9 and no.10.
Each option would cost hundreds of millions of taxpayers’ dollars. Moreover the new and expensive proposed landing steps would not improve on marine safety or enhance convenience for marine users. Unfortunately the government set out a limited agenda for the public consultation and fails to facilitate a thorough public discussion on the matter. It simply restricts the public to choosing one of three very similar options.
Queen’s Pier was an important landmark that helped residents and visitors to understand the history of our city. Therefore any public consultation regarding its re-assembly needs to be genuine and comprehensive. The government should avoid putting forward false choices in a false consultation. We therefore believe that an in-situ reassembly option be considered as it better meets architectural heritage principles and restores the setting of Edinburgh Place, City Hall and the Dias. It would also provide a physical reminder of the location of one of the most historically significant sections of the coastline of Hong Kong Island. It would also significantly reduce the cost as expensive marine works is avoided!!
According to Development Bureau documents while the original pier would be sited betweens Piers 9 and 10, a replica pier structure would be built at the original site of Queen’s Pier, in front of City Hall, and “memorial elements will be added at the original site of QP, e.g. through paving and landscape design, to commemorate the historical significance of QP.” (C&W DC Paper No. 44/2016). Such “staged authenticity” is yet only another 1881 style pastiche for tourist consumption and lacks any genuine meaning for Hong Kong people.
The government made a huge mistake when it demolished Queen’s Pier despite strong objections from the community. While opposing the in-situ reassembly option, the government set a limited agenda for the 18 District Councils in 2007-08 in order to secure their support. We jointly say no to fake choices, fake representation of public opinion, fake consultation and fake pier.