Kai Tak Development – Reconstruction and Upgrading of Kai Tak Nullah

Client and Design Award

Project Team

Client: Civil Engineering and Development Department
Designer: AECOM Asia Company Limited

Project summary

The Project “Kai Tak Development – Reconstruction and Upgrading of Kai Tak Nullah” (the Project) is commissioned by the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The Project aims to improve the drainage capacity of the existing Kai Tak Nullah (KTN) to withstand flooding with a return period of one in 200 years and mitigate the flooding risk to the surrounding areas, as well as upgrade the existing KTN to a green river with special characteristic and townscape features.

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Condition of Kai Tak Nullah before Construction Works

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Project Layout

The Project scope comprises the following:

(a) Reconstruction and upgrading of the section of KTN of about 1300 metres within Kai Tak Development Area into a combination of a drainage channel and multi-cell box culverts;

(b) Construction of two enclosed desilting compounds; and

(c) Ancillary works including landscaping works.

The Project entered into construction stage in January 2013 for phased completion by 2018

Challenges faced and Achievements

Land Use and Landscape/ People and Communities

Apart from improving its drainage capacity, one of the key challenges during the planning and design stage was to consider how to turn KTN into an attractive green river corridor for enjoyment by the general public. The ensuing paragraphs summarise the key considerations given on this aspect.

Green Design Elements: A number of green elements were added to the design of the Project such as constructing artificial rockwork with greening along the nullah walls to simulate natural river scenery and incorporating green and sustainable design including green roofing, skylights and recycled wood panels to the two desilting compounds.

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Artist’s Impression of Typical Cross Section of Future Kai Tak River

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Artist’s Impression of Typical Longitudinal Section of Future Kai Tak River

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Artist’s Impression of Desilting Compound

To meet the public aspirations for revitalizing the KTN to enhance its visual quality and image, they plan to reconstruct and upgrade KTN to turn it into a green river with special characteristic and townscape features, namely Kai Tak River. The Kai Tak River will also serve as a landscape axis linking the adjoining districts and the KTD area to enhance their connectivity.The project team conducted a two-stage public engagement exercise on ‘Building our Kai Tak River’ in December 2010 and June 2011 to engage the public on the planning of Kai Tak River. The outcome of the exercise reveals that there is strong public support fortheirr vision to make Kai Tak River an attractive green river corridor through urban areas, which will provide space for leisure and public activities serving the community while meeting the needs for flood protection.

To take this initiative forward, the upgrading works consists of provision of a river channel in the middle with multi-cell box culverts on both sides to allow room above the box culverts for open space development and connectivity enhancement across the river banks. Furthermore, they launched a design ideas competition titled “Design Ideas Competition for Kai Tak River. Kai Tak Development” in August 2014 to incorporate innovative concepts contributed by the public on the landscape, urban design and riverside facilities design along Kai Tak River. The winning designs were chosen to serve as references for the future design of the leisure space along Kai Tak River.

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Artist’s Impression of Future Kai Tak River (Extracted from Winning Entry of Design Ideas Competition for Kai Tak River – Living Roots by Mark Blackwell, Kien Duy HOANG and Stephen Tin Yau SUEN)

To what extent did the use of CEEQUAL influence your project?

The CEEQUAL assessment provided a good opportunity for the project team to conduct an overall review on the various aspects of sustainability of the Project. Throughout the process, the project team have indentified areas of improvement for incorporation into their future projects for further enhancement on their sustainability performance.