We are fully aware of the growing realization and expectation from the public on social, economic and environmental benefits of heritage conservation. It is always our belief that effective conservation of heritage resources should be able to rehabilitate the physical structures of historic buildings, and to assure the identity and a sense of belongings to our community.
With the announcement of the Chief Executive Policy Address 2007/08, a number of initiatives for enhanced conservation of historic/heritage sites and buildings have been imposed. These initiatives include the requirement for assessing impacts on historic/heritage sites and buildings arising from the implementation of capital works projects so that due consideration will be given for their conservation.
As one of the works departments of the Government, our team has been working closely with the Antiquities & Monuments Office (AMO) of the Leisure & Cultural Services Department to ensure that every effort has been made to preserve the heritage sites or sites with possible heritage value while minimizing possible adverse impact. In addition, Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA) will be conducted when necessary so that balance between the requirements for development initiated by the Government and heritage conservation can be achieved.
The Project includes the conversion of the old Yau Ma Tei Theatre (YMTT) into a small-scaled Xiqu, i.e. Chinese opera, performance venue and the Red Brick Building (RBB) into the supporting facilities.
Completed in 1930, the YMTT is classified as Grade II historic building and the only surviving pre-war cinema building in the urban areas of Hong Kong. The RBB is the oldest water pumping station structure in the territory built in 1895 and was accorded as Grade I historic building.
Design and Features:
The conservation concept for the YMTT is to make adaptive reuse of this valuable historical building that represents local culture and to develop itself as the local cultural and heritage tourism hot spot for Xiqu performance.
Without glamorous outlook and drizzling decorative feature, the new Theatre puts focus on conservation of valuable heritage characters and reinforcement of its local context and district identity. The building fabric together with some historical building elements and interior fittings such as steel truss system, Chinese fir purlins and classic arch, its frank walls and entrance feature columns etc. are retained and restored.
For the RBB, the original layout is retained. The red brick façade, the verandah, the existing tiles discovered in toilet are restored.
This project is one of the eight projects under the "Conserving Central" initiative announced in the Chief Executive's 2009/10 Policy Address.
The Former Police Married Quarters (PMQ) is located at the site of the former Central School built in 1889, which at the time was the first government school to provide Western style of primary and secondary schooling to the public. PMQ provided the first quarter for the married Chinese police officers of junior grades.
Design and Features:
Following extensive consultation with key stakeholders, the Government decided to conserve and revitalize the PMQ for promoting the development of creative industries. After revitalization, the site will be catered for the uses of art galleries, design studios, art education and training centres and accommodation for overseas artists visiting Hong Kong etc.
The revitalization of the PMQ involves upgrading two quarters blocks to meet the functional requirements and modern-day building requirements. Meanwhile, the historical relics of the original Central School are preserved. Besides, it also involves constructing a new multi-purpose room-cum-exhibition area and new galleries and provides about 1,200 square metres of landscaped open space.
The whole project has been commenced since January 2012 and is scheduled for completion in December 2013. During the revitalization of the PMQ, the following features have been carefully preserved:
The following environmental features will be injected into the revitalization of the site:
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