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Located at the Eastern District of the Hong Kong Island, North Point is part of the earlier developed areas in Hong Kong. Today, North Point is a mixed land used area with approximately 24,000 population. Although this district do not have any sight seeing sites to attract tourists, there are many hidden stories coming with its historical background. To explore the stories behind, this book will guide you into the streets and give you a unique visual experience toward North Point.

Introduction

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22 Electric Road

Chun Yeung Street King’s Road

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Map

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Java Road

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Tast Tsz Mui Road

14 Map

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Chun Yeung Street is one of the streets in North Point that should not be missed out. One most significant thing about Chun Yeung Street is the tramway. Unlike the other street in Hong Kong Island, the terminal of the tramway is located at one end of Chun Yeung Street, and the tramway go through all the way from the beginning to the end of the street. The street is crowded in daytime, and people would always walk on the tramway as there is no other transportation going through the street. When the tram was going though the street with the continuous sound of ‘ding’, people would walk beside the tramways. Such a scene is always unforgettable and memorable.

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Chun Yeung Street


春 秧 街

Chun Yeung Street


The story behind Chun Yeung Street refers to the historical background of Hong Kong, while many people from the mainland China immigrated to Hong Kong. Chun Yeung Street was also known as ‘Little Shanghai’ or ‘Little Fujian’ because earlier in the 1920s, people from Fujian and Shanghai immigrated into North Point. Kwok Chun-Yeung, the rich Fujian man was one of those, and he was coming for building a sugar factory in North Point to extend his business. However, Kwok’s plan was ruined as the price of the sugar was dropping dramatically. This resulted that many residential buildings were built and Kwok became the greatest landlord of the street. In the 1930s, the government name the street with Kowk’s name to commemorate him. Extending source : Another road next to Chun Yeung Street is named as Tong Sui Road under the same situation, while ‘Tong’ means sugar in Chinese and ‘Tong Sui’ is came from a direct translation of desserts in Cantonese.

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Chun Yeung Street


The white building is the tramway terminal in Chun Yeung Street near Tong Sui Road. The building behind the white terminal was the Commercial Press (HK) Limited in 1955, and is also today’s Chinese Goods Center Limited. 圖中為糖水道 與春秧街之電車總 站,1955年的商務印書 館 (上圖)如今已改建 為僑冠大厦及華豐國貨 公司(下圖)。

Chun Yeung Street

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King’s

英 皇 道

Road

King’s Road is the longest road that go through The whole district, and is the busiest road in North Point. It was originally called Shau Kei Wan Road as it was built for connecting the way from Causeway Bay to Shau Kei Wan. However, the road was further developed for the reclamation project near the Tsat Tsz Mui Area. By the time when the road was reopened in 1935, the government named the street as King’s Road in honor of the Sliver Jubilee of King Geoege V’s reign.

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King’s Road


King’s Road

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One famous theatre that is still remain today is Sunbeam Theatre, which is located in King’s Road, near North Point MTR station. In 2009, New York Time Magazine voted watching traditional Chinese Operas in Sunbeam Theatre as one of the unmissable experience for tourists in Asia. Sunbeam Theatre was originally the printing workshop of Commercial Press Hong Kong Limited. This land was use forresidential use after the printing workshop was moved. However, some part of the buildings were cancelled in 1965, and Sunbeam Theatre was built there. By the time Sunbeam Theatre was opened, it was considered one of the best theatre with latest and the most professional equipments. Sunbeam Theatre was once considering to shut down in 2012. However, under the consideration about the places that is able to perform Chinese Operas in Hong Kong, Sunbeam Theatre remain there with a new appearance. Today, Sunbeam mainly served as a main place for traditional Chinese Opera performance.


Many theatres were located in King’s Road in the 1950s. For instance, Empire Theatre was opened in 1952 near Tin Chong Street. It was then changed to State Theatre in 1959 when the residential buildings was built nearby. The State Theatre was specifically famous for its constructivism architectural design from Russia in the 1920s, with the flying buttress that included in its design. Such design was very unique and not commonly seen in Hong Kong at that time.

These photos show the change of the area, from Empire Theatre (top) to State Theatre (middle) and snooker club (bottom) today. 這圖見証了電廠街的變遷,由最初的璇宮戲院和皇都 戲院,到今天的桌球城會所。


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Tsat Tsz Mui Road


Tsat Tsz Mui Road is located in the South of King’s Road, and basically runs across the south of North Point. The middle of Tsat Tsz Mui Road is blocked by Island Place. Before the reclamation project in North Point, Tsat Tsz Mui Road was the sea shore of North Point in the 1930s, and the area within was named as Tsat Tsz

七 姊 妹 道

Mui Area. This street is significant in Hong Kong due to its story behind.

at Tsz Mui

Road


The word ‘Tsat Tsz Mui’ refers to the seven sisters in Cantonese, which came from the tale about seven little girls from the Hakka village. By the time they grew up, they pledged to be sisters in their lifetime. By the time they grew up, these seven sisters swore under an oath, ‘as sisters, they will never get marry, and they will die on the same day, even they cannot born at the same time.’ However, the tragedy came while one of them (the third sister) heard about the marriage that arranged from her parents. In traditional Chinese culture, there is no way to deny a marriage that arranged from parents, and therefore the seven sisters decided to commit suicide on the day before the wedding. At that night, these seven sisters walked toward the sea together.

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Tsat Tsz Mui Road


Before North Point was named, the district was named as the Tsat Tsz Mui Area. 在北角區命名前,該區被稱為七姊妹區,而地圖上的 布廉馬山及水塘為今天的寶馬山及賽西湖。

On the next day, no one could find the seven sisters and people in the village saw seven rocks appeared near the seashore. They believed that the seven sisters were died and they were turned into that rocks to stay with each other in the village. Therefore, people named the village as Tsat Tsz Mui Village, and the rocks as Tsat Tsz Mui Shek. In 1934, the government decided to develop the area in order to build more house for the rise of population. The rocks were then buried under the sea during the reclamation project.

Tsat Tsz Mui Road

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Java Road is located in the North of King’s Road. Java is also the name of an Island in Indonesia, showing that the History of North Point is related to Indonesia. From the 1900s, the Dutch shipping firm Koninklijke Java-China Paketvaart Lijnen (also known outside the Netherlands as Royal Interocean Lines, RIL). The road was completed and named in 1933, and was named after this shipping firm.

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Java Road


Java

Road 渣 華 道

This is a part of Java Road. The building was the Middle part of North Point Estate. 圖中為渣華道北角邨中 座。如今北角邨已拆 卸,土地為新鴻基地產 所有,並用作興建住宅 及酒店 。


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Java Road


North Point Estate The most significant architectural feature there is North Point Estate (1957-2003). It was the largest estate in the 1980s, and was considered one of the greatest residential project of the time. North Point Estate was also known as the best public housing in Hong Kong Island, for its great facilities such as lifts, individual kitchens and toilets. Public facilities like post office, shops, and bus terminals also built inside the estate area, while none of the other public housing estates had. However, North Point Estate was demolished in 2003. The land is now owned by Sun Hung Kai Properties. The area will be use for building hotels and other houses for residential use in the future.

Java Road

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Electric Road is linked to Java Street. It was the seashore before reclamation. In 1910, the power station in Wan Chai were not strong enough to support the usage of power source in Hong Kong. Therefore, the power station was built in North Point near the seashore. Few years after the power station was opened, the government named the road as Electric Road, and one other street as Power Street. Tin Chong Street was also given its name as that is theCantonese pronunciation of power station.

Electric 22

Map

Road


This is the power station in the 1910s, and the site is City Garden. A shopping mall is also built at the opposite of City Garden. 1919年的北角發電廠的原址如今已改建之私人屋苑城市花園,左圖中街道的左邊為屋苑範圍,右邊為城市花園 商場。

In 1977, there was a fire accident happened in the power station, causing a shortage of power usage. At the same time, the another new power station in Ap Lei Chau was set up, so the North Point Power Station was shut down. This site today is turned into City Garden, the large scale private estate. One road near City Garden was then named

電 氣 道

as City Garden Road.

Java Road

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Photo credited by Ashley Cheung laihokming.blogspot.hk oldhkphoto.com Text edited by Ashley Cheung Original Sources RTHK laihokming.blogspot.hk MingPao.com Apple Daily News Hong Kong Public Library wikipedia.com

Š Ashley C. 2014

North Point - The Hidden Story  
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