Dear Colleagues,

Our external consultants have completed further feasibility studies on three possible options for the re-provision/re-construction of the sports hall complex. Based on their studies, it was recommended that we re-develop the existing site for the re-construction of a new building. This option would achieve maximum utilisation of space and enhance our academic capabilities.

AC4 will be a 10- to 12-storey building and is expected to be completed in four years. The major source of finance will be from fundraising. The building will include an enlarged and enhanced sports hall with an indoor running track and other additional facilities. It will also accommodate new offices, classrooms and teaching laboratories, and will house several new service learning and community outreach projects.

Another significant feature will be an elegant auditorium. This facility will provide a state-of-the-art venue for major performances, conference meetings, congregations, the annual Arts Festival and other important events. The auditorium is a response to the many requests received by the University from students and staff over the past few years to create a performance venue on campus for our orchestras, choirs, dance troupes and theatre productions. The new venue will help to support artistic expression and promote creativity on campus.

We have discussed the re-development proposal with students and shared the new building’s skeleton plan with the Senate at its latest meeting. We appreciate the many useful suggestions that we received in the process, and we will continue to solicit input to refine our planning.

Cramped conditions continue to be an issue for the University even though 60% more space was added following the completion of Li Dak Sum Yip Yio Chin Academic Building, Lau Ming Wai Academic Building and the Run Run Shaw Creative Media Centre. The University Grants Committee has also acknowledged that CityU is about 20,000 square metres short of space. Our thriving research enterprise and the increasing success of our faculty in winning large research grants have generated additional demands on campus resources.

In this regard, I have asked Professor Alex Jen, Provost and Professor Lu Jian, Vice-President (Research and Technology), to take the lead in formulating a long-term plan for the development/conversion/re-allocation of space based on projected needs over the next five years. In the meantime, I appeal to all our colleagues to help us explore ways to improve our classroom and laboratory scheduling and to enhance efficiency when using Li Dak Sum Yip Yio Chin Academic Building and Lau Ming Wai Academic Building. Your contributions will significantly help to support the University’s development.

Before closing, let me wish you all a prosperous Chinese New Year!

Way Kuo
President and University Distinguished Professor