Date
12 December 2017
Construction is in progress at the Kai Tak MTR Station four years after work began on the Shatin to Central Link. Photo: CNSA
Construction is in progress at the Kai Tak MTR Station four years after work began on the Shatin to Central Link. Photo: CNSA

Protesters slam MTR over rail construction delay in Kowloon City

A group of shop owners in Kowloon City staged a protest against construction delays in the MTR’s Shatin to Central Link.

The shop owners turned off their lights from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday to highlight their criticism of the MTR and the government, Apple Daily reports.

It is understood that at least eight shops have been forced to close after failing to cope with dwindling business. 

The group demanded the MTR and the government offer their members reasonable compensation. Otherwise, they will escalate their action.

MTR began work on the Nam Kok Road construction site, near the rail link’s planned To Kwa Wan Station, in March 2013, closing one side of the road.

The section from Tai Wai Station in the New Territories to Hung Hom Station in Kowloon, which includes the To Kwa Wan Station, was scheduled to open in 2018.

However, the opening has been delayed to mid-2019 after relics dating back to the Song dynasty about 1,000 years ago were unearthed at the site in 2014.

The group said business has fallen 20 to 40 percent while rents of some restaurants in the area have dropped about 6 percent from a year earlier.

It wants the MTR to clean the surroundings of the construction site regularly and reopen the loading and unloading zone. Also, it is demanding that the compensation mechanism be simplified.

MTR said the affected shops can file a claim for compensation according to the Railways Ordinance.

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TL/JC/RA

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