A musical fountain in Kwun Tong with a controversial price tag of HK$50 million (US$6.5 million) opened to the public Thursday.

The site, located at Kwun Tong Promenade, comprises computer-programmed fountains and interactive wet play zones with sensory devices, according to the Home Affairs Department.

Scheduled “shows” throughout the day will feature classical music synchronized with dancing water jets. The fountain will also boast kaleidoscope light patterns at night.

The showpiece was originally proposed by the Kwun Tong District Council under the government’s Signature Project Scheme in 2014, which allocated money for district improvement work.

Kids playing the newly opened musical fountain. Photo: Hong Kong government Information Services Dept.
Kids playing the newly opened musical fountain. Photo: Hong Kong government’s Information Services Dept.

Many criticized the plan, calling the fountain yet another government “white elephant” infrastructure project that would be inefficient, costly, and ultimately of little benefit to the city’s population.

Read more: Pro-dem district councillor says ‘white elephant’ musical fountain could play ‘Glory to Hong Kong’

Kwun Tong district councilor Janelle Leung wrote in an opinion piece on Stand News last April that the project lacked consultation and public support, citing a survey showing that 85% of the area’s residents are opposed to building the fountain.

Last May, she and Chung Kin-wah, a member of district concern group Kowloon East Community, sought to appeal the decision to push the project forward. They were shot down by the Home Affairs Department.

According to the government, the 3,740 square meter space aims to promote the promenade as a leisure hot spot and enrich public enjoyment.

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