The owners of Centro Building have applied for planning permission to change the use of the 8th and 9th floors to “Shops and Services”. According to the planning application A/SK-SKT/20, the roof level which is currently also allocated for car parking will be converted to a flat roof as there would no longer be vehicular access from 8th and 9th floors. There will also be associated reconfiguration of vehicle parking facilities on various floors within the existing building for reflect actual demand.
Since Centro started operation in 2002, the vehicle parking within the building has never exceeded 40% occupancy, according to the application, and average occupancy of the parking facilities has dropped to around 30% within the past 2 years. Noting this underuse of the area, the owners want to convert the two top floors to an indoor market “to optimise of the unused car park spaces and to increase commercial services that cater to the surrounding residential community and leisure and tourism flows into Sai Kung Town”.
However, users of the building, especially the Fusion supermarket and TikiTiki Bowling Bar, have queried the boarded up shops on the 2nd floor, and the bridge across Hiram’s Highway, all assets that are currently unused. How do the new plans fit in with establishing a more friendly shopping and entertainment environment on the lower floors?