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- Cities XL Platinum
Hello everyone! This CJ inspired by my new town experiment to find what planning and design could be put at my future city, I found its merit to continuing as this is a best way to introduce new cityscape and housing development based on the reality of Hong Kong new town and rural development in own creation, to show you how prodigious that high rises community can accommodate large population with equilibrium of built area and countryside.
This, nevertheless, could not be favoured to everyone as they could more enjoy in cityscape with small houses than high rises everywhere; I thought that everything must have a beginning as my CJ has no instance to study in which members could give me and future CJ author an important opinion. Please spend few minutes to read my journal.
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New Territories is an administrative term to address the vast peninsula constitutes one of three regions including Kowloon and Hong Kong Island, half of seven million population (52.2%) benefit from better living environment; owing to series of policy protecting countryside to restrict pollution on air quality and waste disposal, well planning provides high degrees of convenience of living and sense of community. We now return to early years to go through the development of the territory.
1.1 New beginning
In 1910, the government enacted 'New Territories Ordinance' to consolidate and amend the laws relating to the administration and regulation of the new obtained land by Britain at the time.
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Original copy of The Convention for the Extension of Hong Kong Territory, signed at Peking on 8th June 1898.
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Reproduction of map attached to the Convention.
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The British ceremony in Tai Po on 16th April 1899, assuming control of the New Territories.
Britain resumed control over Hong Kong after the WWII, and economic status had been recovered equally as moderate as pre-war period was within a year, following a most brilliant economic growth in decades, New Territories has become an important habitat for primary products from 1950's.
1.2 Changing communities
After Shek Kip Mei squatter fire and Leftist Riots, the government started to implement dozens of measures to satisfy the public expectations towards fair social policy, especially housing, it became a knotty issue as the government were overwhelmed at resettlement cost which limited spending on other public service sector after the unrest.
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Shek Kip Mei Resettlement Estate (石硤尾徙置區), an origin of Public Housing in Hong Kong. (Mid 1960s from Berwick Street)
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Glimpses inside a resettlement block.
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contrast of Wong Tai Sin residential area in 1965 and 2008.
In 1972, the authority announced a Ten-year Housing Programme, aimed to provide self-contained accommodation for 1.8 million people in ten years, it was replaced by Long Term Housing Strategy in 1987 which settling the framework for housing policy to 2001, the strategy was extended to 2020 to meet the latest population estimates, it has become a crucial norm in the city planning of the territory.
Thus, the government prepared for settling a roaring population by an estimates on next three decades, decided to develop the vast plain outside the urban called New Territories (N.T.) in 1973. Before the 'new town programme' arising, the government was launched 'satellite town plan' in early years that to develop fringe areas or existing communities into a large town with self-sufficiency and new business area, this contributed plentiful experience to the later programme.
Today New Territories is a satisfactory region of tourism, residential and industry, the government was organising NGOs to develop eco-tourism and creative industry in the territory; most of heritages and abandoned buildings have been preserved or transformed into a new attractions like museum and gallery. Still, social enterprises, artists and relevant groups have located at some industry buildings with subsidies and special lease arrangements by the authority. Some old towns have been revitalised and indigenous villagers had been obtained lands to restore farmland and small village house.
1.3 Establishment of municipal administration
An new-coming community needs services and facilities to help residents to live better, there was a right time that the government realise that municipal issues should be managed by elected representatives, and caused the Regional Council (區域市政局) set up in 1986, which is a statutory body with financial autonomy, limited legislation and prosecution, responsible for exercising powers and duties conferred or imposed by laws related to municipal services in N.T. include cleaning, culture, recreation, issuing licenses.
Since the 4th Election in 1995, all 39 councilors are fully-elected comprising representatives from constituencies, district boards and three ex officio members from Heung Yee Kuk (in Chinese: 鄉議局, a statutory consultation agency of rural affairs), in charge of monitoring budgets, supervising the Regional Services Department (RSD) which carries out the policies and manages the facilities of the Council. The last election was held in 2015.
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Managing markets and abattoirs, monitoring food business and hawker control.
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Public cleansing and refuse collection.
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Managing cemeteries, crematoria and public toilets.
The revenue in 2013-14 was $ 7.3 billion consisted of rates, licensing fees and charges, and the expenditure in the same year was $6.1 billion that spent on project planning, capital works, environmental hygiene, recreation/sports, culture/entertainment, etc.
According to the 'Regional Council Ordinance', the Council must draft a financial report and expenditure estimates not later than 2 months before the end of each financial year and furnish to the Legislative Council (LegCo) and the Chief Executive, the LegCo may require the RC to provide more data on demand in respect of its financial autonomy , even may freeze its revenue by issuing an order till the RC re-estimate expenditure and redraft it for approval to unfreeze the revenue.
The mechanism is aiming at greater supervision upon public demand for stricter regulation in RC financial management by 'The Review of District Organisations' consultation in 1998.
1.4 Achievement of the blueprint
New Territories has become a prosperous region with over two and a half million people are living there nowadays, this helps to resolve the problem of population growth in the past four decades, and timely develop some potential land to a thriving towns to boost the employment through new town construction and future industry or commercial development. New towns are also a best location to introduce new architectural techniques to housing and infrastructure that more efficiency in cost and stability could be made. Private sectors could seize opportunity to build new estates cooperated with the government to accelerate development progress and assist in providing flats.
Industry in the new town provided vacancies and considerable earnings from manufacture and modern agriculture which contribute 30% of GDP annually to Hong Kong, plus advantage of infrastructure, foreign investment to the New Territories have been weighed heavily on service industry in IT, retail and finance, those fields help Hong Kong gained a reputation of encouraging foreign investors and local people to put their money on new business as the government provides tax concession and excellent consultation to maximize their interest to invest in Hong Kong and China.
Another achievement is that Tin Shui Wai, Tuen Mun and Ma On Shan had been certificated as 'International Safe Community' in 2003, which obviously proved that the government's effort on establishing a safe and comfortable accommodation have been praised. This is a good example for foreign countries to learn how to form and maintain a safe environment for residents to lower medical cost and lift economic efficacy.
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The CJ highest population is expected of 4 million (sum of three territory) in 2032, the three development regions have their feature in natural and culture, they take roles on sharing commercial and industrial functions and reducing land pressure in urban, also attract factories to move onto the industrial estates that built next to some development zone to enhance the employment of residents.
Latest satellite image
2.2 Public Service and utility
2.3 Industry and commercial
2.4 Recreation and greenery
2.5 Rural development
Two special areas include Ng Tung Chai and Chiu Keng Tam or Tai Shui Hang natural reserve have been designated according to 'Country Park Ordinance' which enacted in 1976.
In addition, Phase Four to Seven development have accorded an Environment Impact Assessment proposal (EIAP) approved by Environmental Protection Department (EPD) in 1999, which stipulates impact from height limitation of buildings, landscape and planning must be reduced to the lowest level to protect nearby environment.
New Territories is accessible by public transport like bus, Light Rail and minibus, as the ripe highway system connects the region to urban and rural areas. Drivers may use Castle Peak Road and Tai Po Road to enjoy beautiful view of foothills and shore.
2.7.1 Highway and rural connection
2.7.2 Public buses and light buses
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A KCR train was heading Fanling Station.
Besides, The Kowloon-Canton Railway (KCR) is an alternative for passengers that that is the first railway in Hong Kong for serving over a century, as this was important for the people that which was a only transport for some rural areas before modern highway . However, this had become a cause for improving the train service behind the opinions raised from passengers in 1970's.
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As to satisfy rapid development along the railway, KCR was modernised in July 1983 to meet growing traffics between new towns and urban. The government heeded demands on commuting with rapid community development in 1980 and 90's and to improve accessibility of rural area in West N.T., decided to implement the Railway Development Strategy published in 1994 to build three new commute lines and Western Railway Corridor (WRC) to share both passenger and freight traffics with KCR, it can be proved that railways have become crucial for passengers wherever they live in the territory by over four million patronage in 2014 as railway system across the territory has been defined of back-bone of the passenger transport system for Hong Kong, it take more roles than its primary purpose of reducing highway traffic.
2.7.3B Western Railway Corridor (WRC)
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A WRC train was arriving at Long Ping Station.
The Western Railway Corridor (or West Rail) is one of most advanced railway system in the world and the most expensive one in Hong Kong, it connects Kowloon, West N.T. and China for both local and cross-boundary passenger service and freight transport, it serves most of the West N.T. residents and provide fast train service that just need thirty minutes for a journey to urban.
The construction was undertaken at complicated texture and limited urban space starting from October 1998 and cost 46 billion HKD totally, The railway opened in December 2003 with cheer as the heavy traffic in Tuen Mun Road had been resolved at next years and residents can go to urban with traveling for the WRC to save half the time with other transport.
WRC has been integrated with Light Rail to help residents to travel easily because it is been a part of their norm to rely on this network for daily commuting.
2.7.3C Light Rail
2.8 Looking ahead
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Final screenshots will be uploaded when CJ is completed.
The Journal is yet to be completed as my computer could not afford such a big file loading sometimes. I have to thank all modders since they afforded a great assistance to the CJ. Please rate after reading the journal as this is significant for me to hear all your opinion, even a criticism. Thank you.
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CJ Yuen Long/Tin Shui Wai Development Programme 元朗/天水圍發展計劃
Brief words of the two places' development