UP AG AINST IT

Hong Kong Tatler - - Features -

Both Shaw and South­ern Dis­trict Coun­cil­lor Paul Zim­mer­man, an en­thu­si­as­tic cam­paigner for bet­ter ur­ban plan­ning, cite a stub­born and back­ward Trans­port Depart­ment as the main road­block in the drive for bet­ter ur­ban plan­ning. “The Trans­port and High­ways de­part­ments are work­ing with plan­ning and de­sign man­u­als that are in­cred­i­bly out­dated com­pared to where we are in Europe or New York,” says Zim­mer­man. Fur­ther­more, the re­quire­ments of th­ese de­part­ments of­ten seem to trump those of all oth­ers, says Shaw. “Our Trans­port Depart­ment is a law unto it­self. Un­til you get a mayor or a chief ex­ec­u­tive who will say to his trans­port depart­ment, ‘Sod off, we’re go­ing to do it this way,’ change won’t hap­pen—be­cause they are so pow­er­ful, es­pe­cially in Hong Kong.”

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