Building Next To Shophouses | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Building Next To Shophouses

Greetings:  It is very common to see new residential flats built butting against shophouses, and an example of such is shown in this photo.   Across the street, the two relatively new buildings were likely constructed at two different time and there is no air gap between the two either.

I have never watched how they are built, so I wonder if they install a membrane between the two such that at a later time when the shophouses are to be demolished, the job would be easier than to chip out the older concrete.

It is also intriguing to see shophouses that escape, or perhaps miss, their neighbouring redevelopment.  There must be a variety of reasons which I would like to learn about.  Thanks, and Regards,  Peter   

Shophouses Butting Against New Building
Shophouses Butting Against New Building

I don't think any membrane was used when the bulk of these new buildings next to old shophouses occurred, because it's quite common to see the remains of the shophouse wall on the side of the new building. Sometimes the outline of the old building is very clear to see, so with a bit of imagination you can see what the old building looked like.

The ones I find most eye-catching is where one half of the shophouse terrace is replaced with a new building, then later the other half is replaced, but old shophouse pillar at the boundary still remains.

I'll take a photo next time I see one of these cases, to show what I mean.

Thanks David, for your reply.  May I take this opportunity to wish my fellow Gwulo-ers a Merry Christmas and all the best in 2018.  Regards,  Peter

A good example of an orphan shophouse pillar is on Gloucester road in Wanchai:

Merry Christmas all!

There is also one on Lockhart Road however I believe this was demolished in early 2017

Another on Johnstone Road:

There are a number of old shop houses surviving on Johnston road that still retain their pillars

Thanks to Herostratus for adding the views of the orphan pillars.

Here's an example of the remains of the old wall that are left when the old building is demolished. It's on Queen's Road West, opposite Bird Bridge:

Remains of old building on wall
Remains of old building on wall, by Admin

A few years back (2009) I met up with David in Taipo and we went for a wander to see what could be found. It didn't take his eagle eyes long to spot this old house remnant on Tsing Yuen Street in the old Mkt area.

Tsing Yuen Street relic, Tai Po
Tsing Yuen Street relic, Tai Po, by Philk
Tsing Yuen Street relic, Tai Po
Tsing Yuen Street relic, Tai Po, by Philk

What appears to have happened is that the building on the left (Wai On Bldg) was built when the old town house was still standing and the column was embedded in the new wall, then when the old house was knocked down the workmen either couldn't be bothered to remove it or perhaps there was a danger of damaging the building. Anyway, the new building (Ngan Fai Bldg) went up in its place but with a podium so the old roof structure is still there and belongs to neither.

Another example is on Robinson Road:

A photo of the original building:

No 68 Robinson Road
No 68 Robinson Road , by aetse