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Setting the bar | World’s best
Meanwhile, Hong Kong International Airport
welcomed 56.5 million passengers in 2012, making
it the tenth busiest airport in the world. With the
new Kai Tak Cruise Terminal at Victoria Harbour
– including space for two 360m vessels and some
8000 passengers – this reaffirms Hong Kong’s
status as the gateway to Asia. Last year, more than
50 hotel and guesthouse projects were constructed
to keep up with tourist demand.
Like Perth, Hong Kong is also keen to develop
its creative scene. The West Kowloon Cultural
District is set to become the city’s largest arts
development, attracting local government
investment of around AU$196 million. It will
span 40 hectares in total, with 17 venues for
music, theatre, visual arts and dance – including
a museum of comparable size to the Museum of
Modern Art, New York.
Still, most people love the city’s natural
surroundings. “Hong Kong is a very compact city
that has managed to maintain its natural heritage,
[creating] a dense network of green spaces,” stated
a 2012 report by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
Though dense, the skyline frames perfect
harbour and mountain views (protected by
development-free zones). It’s a feature in itself;
new buildings undergo height profiling to ensure
landmarks like the International Financial Centre
and Bank of China Tower punctuate the horizon.
On the ground, this contemporary architecture
mingles with heritage buildings, reflecting Hong
Kong’s Chinese origins and British colonial era. Now
a global economic centre, it stands as testament
to urban innovation and creativity. By embracing
the challenge of limited space, the city has become
soaring, functional and thoroughly liveable.
With some imagination, Hong Kong shows how
great a city Perth can be.
The proposed Kai Tak Cruise Terminal.
Hong Kong’s skyline bristles with skyscrapers.
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