Macau old quarters’ revitalisation needs time: Ho

2024-02-16 03:55     BY Yuki Lei    Comment:5

Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng, accompanied by his wife Cheng Soo Ching, visited the city’s six  designated revitalisation areas on Tuesday, the fourth day of the Chinese New Year (CNY), telling reporters on the sidelines of the tour that revitalising the old quarters needs time.

In line with the government-initiated revitalisation programme in conjunction with the city’s six integrated resort (IR) operators – SJM, Galaxy, Wynn, MGM, Melco and Sands, the six old quarters comprise the Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro area, Coloane’s Lai Chi Vun Shipyards, the pedestrianisation of Rua da Felicidade (“Street of Bliss”), the Barra (“harbour entrance”) area, Pier 23 and Pier 25 in the Inner Harbour district, and the Mount Fortress area, as well as Taipa’s erstwhile Iec Long Firecracker Factory.

Accompanied by Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Elsie Ao Ieong U and Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC) President Leong Wai Man, Ho visited the six areas to learn more about the activities organised at each of them during the holiday, feel their “lively” CNY atmosphere, and get in touch with residents and visitors alike, according to a statement by Ao Ieong’s office.

The statement noted that the revitalisation areas have proved “very popular” during the Chinese New Year, attracting both locals and tourists, enabling them to experience Macau’s “innovative cultural tourism experience”.

The government gradually launched the old quarters’ revitalisation drive in cooperation with Macau’s six IR operators in the second half of last year.

According to the statement, Ho first went to the “Celebrating the Year of the Dragon in the Monte Fortress” event organised by Melco in the Mount Fortress Garden, where he talked to some of the food booth operators and attended the area’s musical performances.

The chief executive then went to the Barra area to visit an exhibition jointly organised by the Cultural Affairs Bureau and MGM, namely, “Recordações da Barra: Uma Viagem Visual – Exposição de Arquivos e Artes” (“Barra Memories: A Visual Journey – Exhibition of Archives and Arts”), in addition to exchanging views with young exhibitors at the Barra Spring Fair.

The statement noted that Ho also visited the erstwhile Iec Long Firecracker Factory in Taipa and the former Lai Chi Vun Shipyard area in Coloane, first visiting a raft of festive events dedicated to the theme “Spring Festival in Full Bloom” organised by Sands China at the former firecracker plant, such as the event’s AI Holographic Photo Booth and Chinese New Year-inspired installations, as well as special workshops for families.

Visiting the festive scene inspired by peach blossoms at the Lai Chi Vun Shipyard area, created by Galaxy Entertainment Group (GEG), and experiencing the unique culture and history as well as the scenic atmosphere of the area, according to the statement, Ho briefed reporters on his six-area tour, pointing out that, based on his first-hand observations, the Mount Fortress area was full of people, the Iec Long Firecracker Factory was a very good revitalisation example, while the Barra area attracted a lot of young people to participate. He insisted that each revitalisation area needed time to be developed and, therefore, the Lai Chi Vun Shipyard area ought to be given more time, “as it will never prosper just right after completing it”.

Ho ended his visit, according to the statement, at Wynn’s pedestrianised Rua da Felicidade and SJM’s Kam Pek Community Centre in Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro.

Ho visits partly pedestrianised ‘Old Taipa’

Meanwhile, Ho, accompanied by Secretary for Economy and Finance Lei Wai Nong, as well as a number of senior government officials and representatives of trade associations, visited on the third day of the Chinese New Year, i.e., on Monday, the temporarily pedestrianised areas in “Old Taipa”, comprising the junction of Rua de Fernão Mendes Pinto and Rua do Supico, the junction of Rua Correia da Silva and Rua Governador Tamagnini Barbosa, as well as the section between Calçada do Quartel and Avenida de Carlos da Maia.

While visiting the pedestrianised area, Ho said the government was studying the feasibility of using idle plots of land near Taipa’s Chun Su Mei multistorey carpark for tourism purposes.

The area’s nine-day pedestrianisation will end on Sunday.

Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng (centre, front) greets Chinese New Year holidaymakers on Tuesday, the fourth day of the Chinese New Year, during his fact-finding visit to the Mount Fortress revitalisation area, accompanied, among others, by his wife Cheng Soo Ching (front, third from left) and Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Elsie Ao Ieong U (second row, right behind Ho). – Photo: The Office of the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture

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