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The Balance between the Two Characters of the Night: A Study on the Nightscape of Pei Ho Street and Yen Chow Street West in Sham Shui Po

Authors: Lei Danyang, Lu Jialiang

Abstract:

As nightlife is getting richer in urban area, urban nightscape has become an increasingly important part of the urban landscape. Understanding urban nightscape from the perspec­tive of pedestrian perception is very important to improve the livability and walkability of a city. The purpose of this study is to analyze the nightscapes of two different urban forms. The research methods are literature investigation and field investigation. From analyzing the lighting, sensory ex­perience, and night activities, this research studies the two streets, Pei Ho Street and Yen Chow Street West in Sham Shui Po. Results revealed that the two streets are on the two extremes of the two characters of the night and a better balance needs to be found between them. Because of the different land usage and stakeholders, the two streets should play different roles in the nightscape, so their balance points are also different. On the one hand, Pei Ho Street, which has a strong commercial atmos­phere, should not only retain its vitality and diversity but also ensure its function of relaxation at night; on the other hand, in Yen Chow Street West, it is necessary to develop its potential of reconnecting people with the darkness of the night while ensur­ing its safety. These findings may not only provide policymak­ers with information to help them improve the nightscape and livability of the Sham Shui Po area but also help bridge the gap between research and design. In the future, more attention should be paid to pedestrian preference and nightscape perception of vulnerable groups.

Keywords: Hong Kong, pedestrian perception, Sham Shui Po, urban form, urban nightscape.

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