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The New West 一路向西 Kennedy Town’s rapid development has given its status as a viable alternative to the city’s traditional residential hubs 堅尼地城 新貌更添魅力| Text : Elizabeth Kerr | Photo : www.squarefoot.com.hk | 沿著電車路走到港島區的西端,便是堅 尼地城。近年來該區急速發展,成為 名流紳士雲集的新據點。新舊兼容的街道, 既有懷舊的五金舖,也有高級麵包店,中式 及西式餐館在此分庭抗禮。該區昔日的勞動 印象,早已消失得無影無蹤。 開天闢地 堅尼地城以第七任港督堅尼地( Arthur Kennedy)的名字來命名。區內部分土地由填 海所得,名為堅彌地城海旁。曾經是香港較 偏遠的地區,港島西區一帶遺留了不少歷史 建築,但能保留下來的已所剩無幾。上環的 舊式唐樓已發展成為低密度住宅;蘇豪區早 已是發展商的囊中物,興建高樓大廈指日可 待。種種變遷下,古蹟保育問題備受關注。 香港文化遺產基金會(Heritage Hong Kong Foundation)主席Margaret Brooke表示,政 府會因應不同情況制訂保育政策,但同時要 平衡發展所需,意味著部分歷史古蹟將會被 抹去。 萬基地產公司主席劉光耀博士表示,堅尼地 城民風純樸,部分居民世代定居於此,或許 從沒想過會經歷大變遷。自港鐵在約十年前 Follow the tram tracks out to the west end and a reasonably, if not a whole, new world opens in front of you. The new face of Kennedy Town may soon eclipse Sheung Wan as the hip neighbourhood to head to for both well-heeled Hongkongers and new arrivals alike. The streets are dotted with just as many fancy bakeries as old school Hong Kong hardware stores, and more are on the way; Italian food is dished out as often as Chinese. The working class vibe is definitely vanishing if it’s not gone already. New Frontier Named for Hong Kong’s seventh governor, Arthur Kennedy, the neighbourhood is made up partly of reclaimed land, which is now Kennedy Town Praya. At one time this was the suburbs (which some people still believe) and a great deal of Hong Kong heritage remains. At least for now. The tong lau that have been remade as swank low-rise apartments in Sheung Wan and SoHo are being snapped up by developers looking to replace them with high-rises. “The government assesses heritage on a ‘case-by-case’ basis. There is no such thing as conserving an entire district,” Heritage Hong Kong Foundation chair Margaret Brooke told Time Out in 2011. The imminent opening of the heavily anticipated MTR extension (possibly 2015 now) has done more for Kennedy Town than merely connect it to the “blue line” and thus the rest of the city. “The people in Kennedy Town are honest and simple,” begins Fortuneland Real Estate Agency chair Dr Joseph Lau. “Most people have lived here from generation to generation.” The announcement of the new line, a decade ago, alone sent prices along its new stops — the others being Sai Ying Pun and HKU — up as much as 20 percent initially and could potentially settle at around 30 percent. Though things have stabilised since and the sub-market is as wobbly as the rest of Hong Kong, Kennedy Town has been on the receiving end of the kind of growth that rivals nearby Sheung Wan and Island East decades ago. 22 Focus 市場焦點


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