Kowloon, or Nine Dragons, has historically been the Chinese flipside to Hong Kong's Central, where British traders first set up trading companies in the protected Victoria Harbour. After the relocation of Hong Kong International Airport from Kowloon Bay to Chek Lap Kok, the relaxation of building height restrictions allowed for skyscrapers to begin dominating Kowloon's skyline. The New Heart of Hong Kong chronicles the development of the International Commerce Centre (ICC) and how what was originally just another office building is changing the way Hong Kong residents live, work, play and perceive West Kowloon as the new central business district. From Governor David Wilson s 1989 policy address outlining a masterplan for a rail corridor linking a new airport to Central, to KPF s initial design sketches for what became a mixed-use engineering marvel, to case studies of those who have chosen West Kowloon as their office or home, The New Heart of Hong Kong illustrates how ICC challenges the old order of Central's dominance.
A native of Hong Kong, Rebecca Lo grew up in Toronto and holds a Bachelor of Interior Design degree from the University of Manitoba. She returned to Hong Kong in 2000 and contributes to Beijing-based China Daily, Shanghai-based LP Luxury Properties, NYC-based Hospitality Design, and Manchester-based Sleeper. Sun Hung Kai Properties Limited "SHKP" was publicly listed in 1972 and is now one of the largest property companies in Hong Kong. It specialises in developing premium-quality residential projects, offices, and shopping centres. The Group employs more than 37,000 people. Photography by Grischa Ruschendorf.