Chinese Herb Garden Revitalizes Central & Western District
Situated in its Queen Street project, the Chinese Herb Garden, a
public open space now under the auspices of the Leisure and
Cultural Services Department, is the first theme park - blended
with local characteristics - initiated by the Urban Renewal
Mr Edward Cheng, Chairman of the URA Board said today (Friday) at the opening ceremony of this theme park, "The mission of the URA is to sustain the vibrancy, both economically and environmentally, of an old district, through its 4R Strategy, namely, Redevelopment, Rehabilitation, Revitalisation and pReservation. Building on the local culture and other characteristics, we flexibly link up our revitalization efforts with our projects for synergy reasons. The Chinese Herb Garden is a notable example of a redevelopment project of ours nicely enriched with an element of revitalization."
Mr. Cheng added that Sheung Wan is a traditional area with a long history. The development of Chinese medicine goes back to over 100 years, with numerous shops selling not just Chinese medicine, but also preserved marine products, birds' nests and other much-sought-after medicinal stuff. It was for this reason that the URA made an attempt to galvanize local efforts in all concerned quarters with a view to coming up with something that would best reflect this unique district character in its project. This happily culminated in the current theme park in the site boundaries of URA's Queen Street project. Known as Chinese Herb Garden, this public open space promotes Chinese medicine education on the one hand, and highlights the unique traditional character of Sheung Wan on the other.
The park occupies some 1,300 square metres. Named after "Sheng Non", commonly regarded as the god of Chinese medicine, the park has in addition to a statue of Sheng Non, some 100 species of Chinese herbs planted for public display in five distinct areas, each with species of broadly similar herbal features. The descriptions of the various species are augmented by a picture-rich display board on one side of the park, all designed to stimulate interest in, and to promote understanding of, this fascinating aspect of Chinese culture. Indeed there is every prospect of the theme park becoming a must for tourists.
Carrying a price tag of $1.3 million for construction, the Chinese Herb Garden took over two years to complete.
"The project was possible only because of the immense contribution made by our partners: the Central and Western District Council, the Hong Kong Chinese Medicine Merchants Association, the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the Architectural Services Department and District Office (Central & Western). I take this opportunity to salute all of them," said Mr Cheng.
Mr. Cheng added that the URA will continue to embark on revitalization projects in Sheung Wan in order to promote quality living.
Present at the opening ceremony today were Mr. Thomas CHOW, Director of Leisure and Cultural Services Department; Mr. C H YUE, Director of Architectural Services Department; Mr. CHAN Tak Chor, Chairman of Central & Western District Council; Mr. Edward CHENG, Chairman of Urban Renewal Authority; Mr. LEE Ying Sang, Chairman of Hong Kong Chinese Medicine Merchants Association; Mr. Billy LAM, Managing Director of Urban Renewal Authority; Ms. Eliza YAU, District Officer (Central & Western); Mr. YEUNG Wai Foon, Chairman of Working Group on Culture, Leisure and Sports Affairs of the Central & Western District Council; Professor FUNG Yik Bun, Advisor to Chinese Herb Garden; and Mr. CHAN Lap Yip, General Manager (Marketing) of Hong Kong Tourism Board.