Tuesday, February 26, 2008

What do you wish for the Asia's World City?

A growing list of wishes randomly made by anyone who is interested:
A beautiful, traditional Chinese Gardens like those in Suzhou
A better common sense on different things rather than just making money
A big central park like in NYC
A good outdoor music festival
A local art magazine with international perspective
A local movie magazine with international perspective
A more balanced governmental perspective not only focusing on economic growth but that can also see the value, which proactively supports a rich and diverse local cultural industry
A museum culture that's really inspiring but not this bureaucracy-minded shove.
A platform for researching, studying and exhibiting Asian cultures
A population reading good books, not just newspaper and magazines
A proper visual arts university
A public art gallery with a curatorial program to show the most cutting edge contemporary local and international work
A real national park with rangers preventing people from harming wildlife
A well equipped central library and laboratories for taking up research projects and lifelong education
A town square where people will gather and enjoy outdoor activities
Academic freedom
Accountable politicians

Active surrenderings (tribute to Jeanette Winterson)
Affordable housing for low-income people including artists, musicians, poets and martial artists, etc.
All the past, the present and the future visible in the city
An all female police force
An efficient, cheap and environment-friendly transport system
An end to civil servant run museums
An end to trailer fishing
An expressive environment
An independent public-funded Visual Arts Academy.
An interest in art
An ocean that we can swim in and air we can breathe
An opera house
Artificial nature
Artist in residency programs
Ban on all Styrofoam lunch boxes
Being a normal city
Better harbour protection
Better Mandarin language training
Bicycle lanes in the city
Big warehouse-type supermarkets
Career opportunities not only for painters but artists of all art forms
Cheaper Lychee Martinis
Clean air and unpolluted bodies of water
Clean and ecological toilet
Comprehensive social welfare system
Compulsory architecture courses for all real estate developers
Compulsory pay for plastic bags
Compulsory recycling programmes, particularly for glass
Conservation and preservation of historical sites, villages and farm fields
Control and regulation of the carbon emission from the Pearl River Delta
Cultural diversity

Curious minds
Decent English bookshops
Easier connections including cheaper flights to West and South Asia (India)
Easy access to the harbour which has to be enhanced
Education that encourages creative thinking - throughout primary and secondary level
English reinstated in schools as the common language of the world's business
Free from the Chinese Government's control
Free of MSG and promotion of organic food
Free university education
Good bands
Good Chinese newspaper
Good literary skills
Good museum bookshop
Grants for artist and curators from and to all over the world
Greater environmental consciousness
Green parks and open public spaces for dogs and children
Hakka museum
Heritage management model
Hong Kong New New Wave Cinema
International art biennial
International contemporary-only visual art fair
Investment in capital projects that build the infrastructure for technology development instead of Disneyland, only a theme park of very low service industries.
Jealousy free zones
Keeping the judicial system strong and just.
Legislation on “fair trade”, sex education and human rights issues
Less administrative-driven policies in different kinds and levels of institutions
Less construction and less digging of cables on the streets
Less gossip magazines
Less inflated housing/rental cost.
Less internet/media control and self-censorship
Less mobile phone talk in public places
Less slogans
Lively street cultures
Local collectors for Hong Kong art
Lots and lots of benches, everywhere, without partitions
Low costs round trip flights to and from Hong Kong
Maintaining low crime rate with better-paid policemen who are not prone to corruption
Mature and intelligent public administrators/politicians
Media of better quality
Minimalist government (just doing what essential)
Minimum wage
Mobile hot dog booths
More cinemas showing art house films
More curators
More education on not dumping clothes every season
More English: a Master of Fine Arts program in Writing at the universities
More funds for liberal arts education
More international news in local newspapers
More local contemporary artists' works shown
More Mexican restaurants
More of a place where is adequate time for history and memory, rather than a site for transients.
More professional and international standard film stars and singers
More programs for students to travel abroad to widen their horizons
More progressive experimental art making than profit-driven art practice
More public spaces
More respect for others’ privacy
More schools that promote creative and lateral thinking
More statistic and research for arts/social aspects
More types of curators
More vegetarian restaurants (for Buddhism and Hinduism are major philosophical /religious traditions in Asia).
Muffed but glowing mornings
Multiculturalism that can transcend racism
Museum of contemporary art
No calling ourselves 'cultural wasteland'
No discrimination against people from South East Asia or anyone whose skin is darker than Chinese
No earning money for earning more money
No gossips and rumors that some simply use as a sport to discredit honorable individuals
No more art with stupid Chinese laughing faces
No more big white elephants
No more East-meet-West cliché
No more high rises especially in already congested areas
No more highways and shopping malls
No more signs telling us what to do such as "this park is NON SMOKING!"
No more TV soap operas
No nationality as majority
No one pushing each other while walking on the street
Not only functional but stylish public facilities
Open and free minds
Pensions for the elderly to really live on
People-oriented development (of places)
Permanent and lively Stanley market
Polite taxi drivers
Political action on environmental protection
Promoting a culture of philanthropy especially to support the arts
Proper waste disposal into our waters to save our marine life
Public space that really allows people to interact
Quality art exhibitions
Quality gigs on the streets
Quality healthcare for all and paying government medical practitioners competitive salaries so they remain to serve the public
Quality museums
Rational debate
Real home-ownership
Real lawn for people to sit on
Rebuilding old architectures just like the ones in the good old days
Recycling construction materials
Requiring planting more trees in all new property developments and their surrounding
Respect and space for animals and plants
Revolutionists (in different aspects)
Rich arts and culture
Saving electricity at night
Sidewalk cafes
Simpler admission procedures for would-be migrants
Slow living
Smart and attractive architectural and urban design, particularly on waterfronts
Social and personal responsibilities to the elderly and children
Speaking foreign languages
Stronger protests
Sunsets in the east
Sustained funding of cultural bodies
Taxi drivers able to understand tourists in English
The Clock Tower

True blue sky
Universal suffrage
University admittance for all pass grades
Values that are less money-oriented
Wet markets permanent in Central
Working hard playing hard
World-class galleries
Yin-Yan' instead of 'Starbuck'


Anonymous said...

More love
More salads & community gardens

Anonymous said...

More independent artspaces in neighbourhoods

Anonymous said...

More pedestrian-only areas
Parks that have grass
A stop to car-centred urban planning
People-first urban planning
Decent public sculpture
The pedestrian crossing in front of Peninsula Hotel restored so the public is not treated like rats that must go underground to get to the other side of the road and the Harbourfront!
Bureacrats that do not kowtow to China (or what they think China wants)!
Great cartoon strips in the English newspapers e.g. Tumbleweeds and The Wizad of Id!!!
Cancel the sycophantic Bauhinia Medal system.
Stop tall buildings blocking the view to Lion Rock
Reduce school children's homework
Housing estates that have grass and trees
Keep our old urban areas old and let them organically develop
Close the Urban Renewal Authority

Anonymous said...

Less public relation
More local history education
Less nationalistic doctrine
No more gender, racial and sexual discrimination
More diverse economic development rather than stock market game.
Reclaim our public space
Aesthetic education
Space for Eros and diverse desire
Respect the poor, marginal and minority groups
Colours and creativities

Anonymous said...

Improvement in education system
Stability and prosperous growth of economy
Better welfare benefit

chantal said...

Thanks for this - very romantic...

New Territories said...

Pride in Cantonese language and culture (plus better support system for foreigners learning Cantonese)
More teenage rebels in terms of ideas and creativity, not just fashion
More innocent mischief
A single, cohesive, simple-interface, bilingual listings website with all art/culture event information-- plus easy-to-access maps, guides, forums, etc.
A good bagel shop
Places to sit in public
No air conditioner in winter, and reduced use in summer
More arts-and-culture links with Southeast Asia (Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia)
Save the street markets, and enhance with sidewalk cha-chantengs, fusing the Parisian arcade with HK market culture!
Gardens on rooftops-- especially public ones

Anonymous said...

- a good mix of old and new architecture (buildings); keeping the old tradition alive within the city.
- Clean and fresh air
- user friendly transportation system - easy to find, use and with English speaking staff
- Lot of green, open space in the city (something like Singapore)

Anonymous said...

street hawkers
flea market
brands founded by Hongkongers

Anonymous said...

1. More concern about the environment protection
2. Every Hong Kong people got a job
3. Hong Kong become a non-smoking city in Asia

Anonymous said...

- Gov't funded-cultural-led creative industries
- A distinctive, recognisable and resonant visual identity in art, design, and fashion
- World renowned home-grown Hong Kong-based fashion designer

Anonymous said...

I believe we need improvements in the following areas as well :-

1. clean air (less air pollution),
2. more road maps and precise/clear signages to guide and introduce the cultural or sceneic spots to foreigners,
3. hygienic environment, neat and rubbish clear public area,
4. courtesy and patience of all citizens, conscienousness to queue when there is a crowd,
5. improvement of the education level of the general public and our next generations, mere increase in funding to educational institution, IVE, VTC, etc. will not necessarily lead to higher education level, subsidies should be on merit basis (e.g. scholarship)
6. improvement in personal hygiene of the general public,
7. improvement in language skills (English, Putongua, Japanese, Spanish, etc.) of the general public,
8. more seats for international education so that children of expatriates/foreigners from round the globe can secure education of their hometown jurisdiction.

weewhale said...

Less roads.

Less malls.

More life between buildings.

More intellengent use of public buildings.

Less engineers in charge, more poor struggling artists amongst us.

jl said...

I wish there could be a multitude of formal and informal channels for citizens (n non citizen alike) to express and have their views heard by the (democratic -- being almost the necessary condition) government and taken in account fairly for all public decisions on things concerning the whole Hong Kong society, that then we could do away with some symbolic wish list.

weewhale said...

SCMP.com to progress into the 21st century and removing its paywall, even just partially please.

Frankie Chan Wai-lun Frankie said...