Hong Kong legislator Emily Lau can spot a white elephant from miles away!
Here she speaks in support to Alan Leong's motion and uses hard data to counter the fluff we have become so accustomed to.
"Mr Deputy, as far as I can observe, and as mentioned by some Members already, the utilization rates and patronage of most existing cultural facilities have been on a general decline in recent years. For example, the number of visitors to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum has dropped from some 800 000 in 2001-02 to just 460 000 in 2003-04. In the case of the Hong Kong Museum of Art, there used to be 250 000 visitors a year, but now there are just 220 000. As for the Hong Kong Film Archive, the number has dropped from 120 000 to 85 000. When it comes to performance venues, the number of visitors to the City Hall has, for example, dropped from 400 000 in 2001 to 370 000 at present. The utilization rates of the Ko Shan Theatre, Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre, Sai Wan Ho Civic Centre, Sheung Wan Civic Centre, Hong Kong Coliseum and the sports complexes in Tsuen Wan, Tuen Mun, the North District, Tai Po, Sha Tin, Kwai Tsing and Yuen Long have all been declining. The only exception is the Queen Elizabeth Stadium. When the utilization rates of these facilities are all declining, how can we be so confident that all the new facilities in the WKCD development will not become white elephants?"
To read the rest of her speech, check out Emily Lau's website: