From Transit Jam – Hong Kong’s psychopath transport planners strike again. Although only 10% of households have them, private cars account for 47% of visits to the West Kowloon Cultural Hub-Zone District, and taxis another 31%. There is no legal way to access the site by bicycle.
Is this because the main attractions – notably a park with grass you can sit on, plus the new M+ Museum – appeal mainly to the wealthy? Or is it that MTR/bus/pedestrian links are so bad that non-car owners find it too much hassle to bother going?
The article says project managers estimated that only 8% of visitors would use private cars, and provided 2,000 car-parking spaces. Now surrounding roads are clogged with illegal parking.
Why didn’t they design the complex, which is in a core urban area adjacent to major bus routes and MTR lines, as car-free? Because the bureaucrats who decide transport priorities all use private cars and arrange everything to suit themselves and their families – and screw the 90% who take buses or the MTR, or walk.
(For another example of the Alphard-first idiocy, look at the reclamation between IFC and the Central ferry piers, where planners somehow managed to cram half a dozen separate parallel two-or three-lane roads into an area a few hundred yards across. Probably a third of the roads’ surfaces are de-facto, though illegal, car parking space, while pedestrians are crammed onto narrow overhead walkways. The people who designed this are retiring on massive pensions.)
More on the Peng Shuai saga: a sports/politics expert in HKFP explains why the Women’s Tennis Association stands up to Beijing (read this – it’s great); and a summary of the propaganda mess from ASPI.
In case I’m too busy complaining about the cold over the next day or two, a few fun things from Twitter…
Micheal Pettis points out – diplomatically – that China’s GDP is overstated and one day they need to fill in a big hole. (Devaluation of the RMB would be one way.)
Magnificently Bitchy Quote of the Week, from Geremie Barme (via here): ‘The Xi personality cult is a cult without personality’.
A 1963 description of Taiwan nationalism. If you see parallels with Hong Kong post-97, keep them you yourself.
And the Almighty replies to a vaccine skeptic.