Public Eye: Tourism bureaucrats obliterate history
15 July 2009
South China Morning Post
If you have the time, stand at the
Kowloon Star Ferry bus terminus and ask yourself this: what pressing
need made our overpaid officials decide to obliterate this piece of
Hong Kong's history anyway? At least with the Hong Kong Star Ferry pier
there was the excuse of a new road. But what town-planning objective
did our bureaucrats have in mind when they ruled we must replace real
history with a fake piazza?
Did they simply scratch their heads
and wonder: Now, what can we do with the Tsim Sha Tsui bus terminus?
Is that why they then spent big bucks of your money to consult the public?
The tourism trade wants a piazza, our bureaucrats discovered. Public
Eye could have told them that without having to consult anybody. Surely
they know how the tourism folks love to fill places with fume-belching
coaches while visitors hurriedly snap pictures of themselves with the
obligatory victory hand signs. Here's a question: what tourism industry
in the world aside from ours would advocate ripping out history? But
our tourism bureaucrats are ecstatic. They say the people want the piazza.
What people? When they consulted
the public, did they ask this: Would you mind awfully if there was no
piazza? Why did they ask the people in the first place? Did the people
ask to be asked?
By Michael Chugani