Open Letter to HKSAR from Pacific Rim Community Design Network Regarding Choi Yuen Village

環太平洋社區設計網絡給香港政府的公開信,關於菜園村

親愛的香港特區政府:

我們是一群來自環太平洋的空間專業者和學者,包括美國、日本、韓國、台灣、香港、加拿大等等。我們已經聽聞今年一月,在香港發生了前所未見的大規模 反高鐵行動。我們知道那是件充滿爭議的計畫,因為它不僅影響了菜園村兩百多棟屋舍,還影響了超過萬間市區的樓房,因為地下隧道將開通經過房舍地下僅僅三十 公尺深,而這些建造於五十年代的房舍安全堪虞是顯而易見的。雖然無論如何669億的預算已經通過——據說是有史以來最昂貴的高速鐵路,我們聽說菜園村民拒 絕被輕易地搬遷,草率安置於市區樓房。我們了解到,菜園村民寧可選擇困難的道路,計畫要共同購地搬遷,再建耕住合一的家園。環太平洋社區設計網絡對於這般 的自助精神非常感佩,尤其他們願意面對困難,堅持自主的生活方式。然而,對於香港政府至今未能針對他們的重建家園構想主動提供協助,我們感到遺憾。菜園村 民重建家園的意志力竟然不能得到尊重!經由本網絡成員的現場探視以及媒體相關報導,我們知道十一月四日的清拆已經破壞了部分農田,但是新村重建尚遙遙無 期!我們很難相信在香港這樣的世界級城市,竟然還有這般迫遷。

更讓我們驚訝地,是許多農作物的清點賠償並沒有得到合理公平的計算處置。這讓我們想起了今年夏天的台灣苗栗大埔案例,類似地,為了發展科技園區,發生了強收農地的事件。在全球面臨糧食危機的時刻,這種推土機生生破壞農作物的事件竟然再次發生於香港,著實讓人驚訝憤怒。

我們認為香港一直是環太平洋網絡中的重要城市,也相信在此刻,香港特區政府仍來得及補救,向它的國際友邦具體表達:人權、糧食、土地在香港是受到珍 視的。我們誠摯的請求香港政府提供菜園村村民足夠的時間,直到他們能重建家園,並且提供合理公平的賠償給那些依法可求償者。我們相信,對於香港新界未來發 展,這將會是一個非常重要的案例,甚至對於全世界。如此,我們相信,香港更能向世界證明它是一個獨一無二的全球城市。

環太平洋社區設計網絡敬上

About Pacific Rim Community Design Network
環太平洋社區設計網絡成立於1998年,在一個舉辦於加州大學柏克萊分校的會議「海岸迴聲:環太平洋的民主設計」("Coastal Echoes: Democratic Design in the Pacific Rim,")結束後,一群主要來自日本、台灣、美國、致力於社區設計領域的學者和專業實踐者發起了這個網絡召集,透過定期會議交流、合作計畫,環太平洋社 區設計網絡期望能促進有志參與式設計和規劃的跨域、跨境交流,分享經驗,促進彼此的專業實踐和研究,形成討論平台,使社區設計在這個政治和社會脈絡均迅速 變遷的環太平洋區域保持能量。十多年來成員持續增加,香港、韓國、泰國、加拿大也陸續有新成員參與。

2010.9,最近一次的環太網絡在日本淡路島聚會,來自香港的陳允中教授和台灣的劉可強教授分享了香港菜園村案例,網絡成員都十分認同運動的價值和村民爭取遷村重建、耕住合一的願景,特別關注這個案例的發展,故有此連署。

(連署名單如後)

英文原文:

Dear HKSAR government,

We are professionals and scholars from the Pacific Rim community, including US, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Canada, etc. We have learned of the unprecedented opposition against the construction of highly controversial high-speed rail in January this year, which will not only uproot 200 households in Choi Yuen village but affect over 10 thousand urban residents because the underground tunnel is only 30 meters below run-down flats built in the 1950s. Despite the approval of the 66.9 billion HKD project– the most expensive in the history of high-speed rail, the villagers refuse to be uprooted from the village and then housed in urban flats. We’ve learned that, instead, they choose a much harder way, which is to purchase a piece of land collectively and rebuild an eco-village where they can live and farm together as before. Our network is fascinated by the self-help spirit of the villagers in upholding their way of life despite all the difficulties. Yet, we feel deeply sorry to know that HKSAR has not been actively helping the would-be-dislocated villagers realize their plan. Moreover, the villagers’ strong will to reconstruct a new village is not appreciated nor respected. From site visits, news, and videos, we learned that the demolition of the old village started on November 4 before the construction of the new village. It is very difficult for us to believe that this kind of forced-eviction is to be enacted in a world-class city like Hong Kong.

More strikingly, we learned that their crops and field were bulldozed without fair compensation. It reminds us of the unfortunate case in Dapu in Taiwan this summer, which is a dispute over compulsory purchase for a science park. In a moment when food security is a global issue, it is indeed disappointing for us to find the kind of scene, excavators demolishing crops in the field, taking place again in Hong Kong.

We appreciate Hong Kong being a significant city contributing to the Pacific Rim community. We believe that it is possible for HKSAR to show its international friends that human right, food, and land, are well respected in Hong Kong. Here, we sincerely ask you to provide the villagers enough time until they can reconstruct their new homes in the new village. Also, please respect agricultural practice and precious land as much as possible by providing fair and decent compensation to those who need it. It will be a very meaningful case to upcoming development in the New Territory and other places around the world. We believe that by following these recommendations Hong Kong can present to the world its uniqueness among global cities.

Sincerely,

Pacific Rim Community Design Network1(環太平洋社區設計網絡)


Endorsement from individual member(網絡成員及個人連署名單)
Boting Zhang, College of Built Environments, University of Washington, USA
Alex Tulinsky Built Environment PhD, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
Amit Ittyerah M Arch student, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
Caroline Chen, Ph.D. candidate, Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning, University of California at Berkeley, USA
Chu-joe Hsia, Professor/Director, Graduate Institute of Building and Planning, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
Daniel B. Abramson, Associate Professor of Urban Design and Planning, University of Washington, USA
Deni Ruggeri, Assistant Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture, School of Architecture and Allied Arts, University of Oregon, USA
Elise Youn Elise Youn, Ph.D. student, UCLA, USA
Graeme Bristol, Executive Director, Centre for Architecture and Human Rights, Canada/Thailand
Huang Hui-Hsin, Graduate Institute of Building and Planning, National Taiwan University, Taiwan
Jayde Lin Roberts, College of Built Environments, University of Washington, USA
Jeff Hou, Chair, Associate Professor, Landscape Architecture, University of Washington, USA
Jim Diers, Associate faculty in Landscape Architecture and Social Work, University of Washington, USA
Jiawen Hu Built Environment PhD student, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
John K.C. Liu, Professor, Graduate Institute of Building and Planning, National Taiwan University, Taiwan
Kimmy Chen, Senior Associate, Bay-Feiendly QLP, QATES+Associate, USA
Liao, Kuei-Hsien, Ph.D. candidate, College of Built Environments, University of Washington, USA
Liling Huang, Assistant Professor, Graduate Institute of Building and Planning, National Taiwan University, Taiwan
Liz Maly, Department of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering, Kobe University, Japan
Manish Chalana, Assistant Professor, Urban Design and Planning, University of Washington, USA
Marcia McNally, Center for Ecological Democracy, SAVE International, USA
Michael Siu, Public Design Lab, School of Design, PolyU, Hong Kong
Mike Douglass, Professor, Urban and Regional Planning, Executive Director, Globalization Research Center, University of Hawai’i, USA
Randy Hester, Center for Ecological Democracy, SAVE International, USA
Sasala Taiban, Assistant professor, Department of Tourism, Tajen University, Taiwan
Sibyl Diver, University of California -Berkeley, USA
Shu-Mei Huang, Ph.D. candidate, College of Built Environments,University of Washington, USA
Sohyun Park, Associate Professor, Department of Architecture, Seoul National University, Korea
Takehiko Endo Takehiko Endo, Landscape Design and Management, University of Hyogo, Japan
Tamesuke Nagahashi, Associate Professor, College of Social Sciences, Ritsumeikan University, Japan
Yuhjean Chen, National Taiwan University Building and Planning Foundation, Taiwan

Arnisson Andre Ortega PhD Candidate in Geography, University of Washington, Seattle, USA.

Chih-Chieh Chuang
Dipl.-Ing., Architecture, Technical University of Munich, Germany

Farah Nur Ain Hushin Undergraduate, Jackson School of International Studies, Seattle, WA

Lin Lin Ph.D., Urban Design and Planning, University of Washington, Seattle, USA

Suay Lee Suay Lee, Taiwan

Tommy Wu Sociology, Ph.D., CUNY, USA

Yuwen Chen ,Taiwan

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