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‘Water tank’ description nearly doomed historic Hong Kong reservoir, report says


A century-old underground reservoir now preserved as a historic monument only just escaped demolition some two years ago when Hong Kong government workers told the Antiquities and Monuments Office it was merely a “water tank,” an official report has found.

Photo: Kevin Cheng/United Social Press.

The Water Supplies Department (WSD) had already knocked down the roof of the reservoir at Bishop’s Hill in Shek Kip Mei in December 2020, when stunning photographs showing its exposed brick and stone archways emerged online. The viral images sparked public fascination and calls to preserve the former Sham Shui Po Service Reservoir as a heritage site.

The city’s Antiquities Advisory Board in June last year rated the Romanesque structure as a Grade 1 historical building. The government arranged guided tours of the site until they were suspended due to Covid-19.

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