Columbarium and the Garden of Remembrance – 2014 Global Awards for Excellence Finalist

Credit: Architectural Services Department, HKSAR

Credit: Architectural Services Department, HKSAR

About Columbarium and the Garden of Remembrance at Kiu Tau Road

Location: Hong Kong, China
Developer: Hong Kong Government SAR
Designer: Architectural Services Department, HKSAR
Size: 3.65 hectares

Columbarium and the Garden of Remembrance at Kiu Tau Road are unique architectural designs that bring a sense of peace and tranquility into its visitors. Due to the need for cremation services increased rapidly in Hong Kong, the supply of columbarium niches could never meet the demand required by the public. Although there is a conscious awareness for the demand in Hong Kong, most people were very reluctant to accept provision of new columbaria near their homes. There were big resistances from local residents when new columbaria were proposed to be built by the government. This project has adopted an innovative approach with an attempt to change the unpleasant feeling of columbaria deeply implanted into the mind of the general public. With innovative management and architectural concepts, the premises are designed as distinctive, peaceful and spiritual places for the families and friends of the deceased to pay respects to their beloved.

An abandoned stepping coffin burial ground was selected as the project site which was then revitalized into a pleasant place of paying respects. Simple architectural forms are employed which integrate into the inherited park-like environment. The project consists of a five-story columbarium niche block and external niche walls at stepping slopes providing a total of 43,710 niches for the public. There are also two Gardens of Remembrance with memorial pillars for about 9,000 nos. of plaques to be inscribed after spreading of bone ashes of the ancestors. The single story low block houses the public toilets, centralized joss paper burners, reception office, servicing car parks and an Electronic Customer Centre. The considerate planning, innovative façade treatments, as well as the improvement of indoor and outdoor environment have produced a distinctive public architecture serving the community.

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