Walking as a Planned Activity : Elevated Pedestrian Network and Urban Design Regulation in Hong Kong

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

27 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)722-744
Journal / PublicationJournal of Urban Design
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2014


This paper sets the elevated pedestrian systems of Hong Kong in the context of planning regulation and land finance. Pedestrian networks have enhanced the internal circulation of major catchment areas around activity centres and transportation interchanges. They have become an administratively and economically successful model in the absence of a democratic urban design process. By tracking the evolving concept of the grade-separated pedestrian networks in Hong Kong, the paper examines the evolution and institutionalization of such a spatial system. It argues that quantitative terms in urban design control cannot tackle environment quality as a complicated human experience and cultural phenomenon. The discussion further raises a concern about increasing public facilities manipulated by private enterprises and the city government as an active mediator in distributing spatial resources.