The Airport Core Programme Exhibition Centre, a facility in Ting Kau that displays models, photos and descriptions of airport-related projects, is likely to be renovated in view of its worn-out facilities and low visitor numbers.
The center in Tsuen Wan district in the New Territories — which has been operational since 1996 – is expected to get a makeover, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
The planned facelift comes as the exhibition center has been attracting only about 4,700 visitors per month on average in recent years.
By comparison, a similar facility such as City Gallery in Central, which exhibits the local city planning, draws about 10,000 visitors each month on average.
Tsuen Wan district councilor Wong Ka-wa suggested reviewing the purpose of the center at a council meeting on May 29.
The exhibition items appear jaded, and the photos have turned yellow, among other issues, Wong noted.
Fellow councilor Lam Faat-kang agreed on the need to revitalize the facility as he believes it could help lift visitor numbers and boost local tourism.
Assistant district officer Gary Chow Chun-hun told the council that the District Office is discussing with the Commissioner for Heritage’s Office to include the exhibition center in the next batch of venues that will be improved via the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme.
The single-storey white building, originally built by Jehangir H. Ruttonjee as a villa in the 1930s, is a grade III historic building.
The structure served as staff quarters for British army officers as well as the residence of the former Financial Secretary Sir Philip Haddon-Cave between 1971 and 1982.
A visitor surnamed Ng told HKEJ that he agrees with the view that the facility needs a revamp and that measures should be also taken to improve its accessibility.
Besides, the exhibition center needs to be supported with promotional activities, he said.
However, another visitor, a person who identified himself as Shum, said he is worried that renovation could damage the historic value of the site and erode the tranquility of the surroundings.