Acclaimed engineer Dr. Joseph Chow Ming-kuen, who once served as president of the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE), died in Hong Kong on Saturday at the age of 77.
Chow, who found himself in the news last year for suggesting that authorities should consider building residential flats above the Kwai Tsing Container Terminal to ease the city’s housing woes, passed away following a battle with lung cancer.
It is believed that Chow, the husband of former Executive Council member and former legislator Selina Chow Liang Shuk-yee, was found in October last year to have contracted lung cancer.
His condition allegedly improved after treatment, only to relapse a few months ago and turn worse, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
Chow’s old friends Dr. Raymond Ho Chung-tai and Dr. Lau Ching-kwong, who also served as HKIE presidents, described him as an optimistic person with a sense of humor.
In a statement issued at 1 am on Sunday, the office of the Hong Kong University Alumni Association expressed its deep condolences to Chow’s family.
The Examinations and Assessment Authority (HKEAA), meanwhile, said Chow had “contributed greatly to the development of the HKEAA”.
Chow was an alumnus of the University of Hong Kong (HKU), and had chaired the HKEAA between 1996 and 2003.
After graduating from HKU’s faculty of engineering in 1964, Chow became a civil and structural engineer by profession and had participated in various infrastructure projects including the Cross-Harbour Tunnel and the Eastern Harbour Crossing and the MTR.
He set up his engineering consulting company in 1992.
Conferred honorary university fellowship by HKU in 2013, Chow proposed, in the middle of last year, construction of high-rise residential buildings atop the Kwai Tsing Container Terminal as a way to alleviate Hong Kong’s housing problem.
Under his plan, it will take only eight years to complete construction of such buildings that can be as big as 16 times the Mei Foo Sun Chuen development in Lai Chi Kok, and accommodate hundreds of thousands of people.
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