Hong Kong Urban Council
2 Bridges Street, Central
The Bridges Street Market is one of the most important surviving examples of mid-20th century modern architecture in Hong Kong. Opened in 1953, the market was designed to house sixty stalls for the buying and selling of fish, meats, fruits, and vegetables. As the first post-war market of its kind, the building quickly became one of the most vibrant architectural spaces in the city. Prominent architectural characteristics include the asymmetrical composition of the front façade, which features large recessed windows next to the main entrance. A second type of window treatment was arranged horizontally with concrete sunshades and wrapped around the length of the building to allow natural light into the market, while protecting the interior from excessive exposure to sunlight. The building’s external form clearly expresses efficient, functional, and rational design principles.
Internally, both of the building’s floors feature open plans with concrete vendor stalls and benches. A wide staircase next to the main entrance leads to the first floor, which is also accessed by a second entrance from the pedestrian steps located on the side of the building. A small penthouse on the flat roof originally provided accommodation for the building’s caretaker and coolies.
The market building is scheduled for renovation in order to house a new social enterprise for the public, opening in 2015.
– Nick Karklins