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Saturday, Mar 02, 2024

Aberdeen ushers in cool new era for wet markets

Aberdeen ushers in cool new era for wet markets

Some 80 stalls will open in the refurbished Aberdeen Market from tomorrow, after the government spent more than HK$250 million on the first four market modernization projects.
Work on the four-story building was completed last month, equipped with stalls tailored to each kind of business, a brand new interior design, and a Green@Community recycle spot.

The market has 142 stalls, of which 137 have been let.

Air-conditioning, a main focus for the upgrade, brings in a centralized system that alleviates a common sore point for wet markets.

It is installed with a cold-storage room for pork.

Corridors are wider than before, and the market comes with a multifunctional space for promotional events and gatherings.

Lam, who runs a dry-products shop, said yesterday that residents and tenants are looking forward to the reopening, praising the facility as "excellent."

The HK$2,500 per month he has to pay for air-conditioning is acceptable even if it meant higher than before.

To, who runs a children's clothing store, said she was satisfied with the air-con system and that there was more space.

She agreed with Lam on the air-con fee and said the rent was reasonable.

But she hoped the ceiling could be higher, which would be good for displaying her products.

A resident said the market used to be hot and stuffy and he used to leave quickly after buying what he needed.

"But now that the market is equipped with air-con and has more stalls, I will shop more in the market," he said.

Aberdeen Market is the first project in the HK$2 billion modernization program proposed by then chief executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor in 2018 and started in 2021.

The government said in February the overhaul would be completed soon, and the market could resume operation at the end of March. The reopening was, however, postponed to tomorrow, and only some 80 of the 137 stalls let out will be operating.

Kwok Wai-keung, who represents the labor sector in the Legislative Council, said that stalls open for business tomorrow would mostly be selling fresh products and that it would take at least eight more weeks for cooked food stalls to finish the overhaul work and that some of the fish stalls still lacked fish tanks.

A tenant, Lam, who rented a shop near the market during the renovation period, said this month the postponement had caused him more than HK$10,000.

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