Construction of a HK$3.5 million Central angling zone will start in October, some five months before it opens in March, says the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.
In documents submitted to the Central and Western District Council for discussion in tomorrow’s meeting, the department said the angling zone, about 54 meters long and 200 square meters in size, will be on the Central section of the Central and Western District Promenade.
Another HK$900,000 is needed annually for its operation.
There will be supporting facilities along with the angling zone, including benches, lighting, working platforms, storage shelves and signposts.
With the open view of Victoria Harbour, convenient transport, food stalls and restrooms, the Central section of the promenade is the right venue for the angling zone, the department said.
Angling zones will also be set up at Pak Shek Kok Promenade in Tai Po and Cheung Fai Road Promenade in Tsing Yi.
The scheme will be tried for a year and will be extended to other districts if it is welcomed by the public, the department said.
The angling zones were first included in Chief Executive Leung Chun- ying’s policy address in January.
Angling zones will be in line with the completion of the Harbour Area Treatment Scheme Stage 2A, according to Leung in his policy address.
But Hong Kong Amateur Fishing Society president Kun Hon-man said yesterday: “As far as I’ve observed, the water quality of Victoria Harbour is very poor. It’s true that the water quality improved in these few years but I dare not say fish caught in the area is safe for eating.”
Central and Western District Council vice chairman Chan Hok-fung said the project is worth a go. “Even without the zone, there are people angling in the area and the supporting facilities will just make it more convenient for the public.”
If the water quality is found to be unsatisfactory, the authorities should warn anglers not to eat the fish they catch in the area, Chan suggested.
In a March blog, Leung promoted the angling zone while suggesting a swimming area in Central where workers can use their lunch time to fish and enjoy a 20-minute swim.