URA provides over 2,600 square metres of community space in Central for public enjoyment
The Urban Renewal Authority (URA) today (Friday) announces the opening of a new community space on the ground floor of The Center for public enjoyment and community network purposes. Following a major facelift and retrofitting, the venue which is designated for Government, Institution and Community uses, is now re-named as “H6 CONET”. It also incorporates the URA’s Urban Renewal Exploration Centre (UREC), providing a public platform for diversified information and interactive experience for better understanding of URA’s urban renewal works.
The Opening Ceremony today is officiated by the Secretary for Development, Mr Michael Wong Wai-lun; Chairman of the URA, Mr Victor So Hing-woh; Chairman of the Central & Western District Council, Mr Yip Wing-shing; URA Board Member and Chairman of the URA Central and Western District Advisory Committee, Mr Edward Chow Kwong-fai and District Officer (Central and Western), Mrs Susanne Wong Ho Wing-sze.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Mr So said: “The URA has dedicated a lot of resources and adopted new place-making thinking in creating H6 CONET, with its name “CONET” stands for Community, Open Space and Network. Intended to be ‘a place for the community’, H6 CONET provides quality spaces for public enjoyment, with ideas rooted from local history of the district. Through strategic planning and design, these public spaces in H6 CONET connect with each other to form a network with unique local character.”
Occupying an area of about 2,660 square metres, H6 CONET has translated various ideas rooted from the local history and showcased in the form of art and culture in a new community space. Opportunities will be offered and opened to the local communities to make use of the spaces in H6 CONET on creating art paintings, holding exhibitions, performances and the like which match the overall theme. Indoor greening and leisure seating area with free Wi-Fi also enhance the amenity of this new community space.
In addition, the UREC at H6 CONET is furnished with innovative and smart technology to provide a new experience for the public to explore urban renewal in a creative and interactive manner. Walk-in public visits and guided tours, which can be booked on the UREC website (www.urec.org.hk), will be available on Monday to Friday (except public holidays).
In order to develop a network of community spaces, seven non-governmental organisations which provide various services to the community are accommodated in H6 CONET.
Apart from providing more community space, H6 CONET further enhances the connectivity with six adjoining streets, namely Tit Hong Lane, Hing Lung Street, Tung Man Street, Wing On Street, Gilman Street and Gilman’s Bazaar, making the H6 CONET easily accessible by members of the public. With the support of the Central & Western District Council and various government departments, the URA will later carry out beautification works on these six streets to enhance the nearby environment, which targets for completion in end 2018 or early 2019.
“We will continue to apply the CONET concept to other locations in the district starting from H6 to Central Market and Graham Market in Peel Street/Graham Street Project (H18) to showcase and promote local characteristics of the Central district, with the objective to serve the local community,” Mr So added.
To celebrate the opening of H6 CONET, the URA took the opportunity to collaborate with various NGOs including Art in Hospital and Arts with the Disabled Association Hong Kong to create a 13.5 metre-long mural featuring landmarks in Central and Sheung Wan. The mural was designed by local artists Ms Apple Tong and Mr Peter Ng, with Mr Kevin Cheng using his photographic skills to capture the making-of moments. The mural was produced with the participation of volunteers of NGO tenants of H6 CONET in two months. Apart from the mural, various artists also contributed to art pieces on five art walls and an idea wall in the community space, featuring the historical characteristics of five adjourning streets and artist expression on the development of the city landscape over time in the district.