hong kong mid-level escalators
Twisting up through the narrow streets of Hong Kong is the world’s longest escalator system, spanning over 800m. The escalators, moving walkways and pedestrian bridges connect the downtown financial district to the mid-levels, a upscale neighborhood of condominium towers where many executives live. The escalator system was conceived to alleviate car traffic by helping commuters travel efficiently to work while providing protection from rain. The escalators have proven to be very popular, carrying over 45,000 people a day.
Starting at conduit road, the escalator moves in the downward
direction starting at 6am, allowing for a approximate 20 min commute to
the bottom of the hill, a change in elevation of 134m. At 10am the escalators
reverse direction and remains upward until midnight when it is shut down.
Since its completion in 1994, the escalators have transformed the neighborhoods
they transverse into popular arts and restaurant districts. Despite their
functional aesthetic the escalators create a unique cross sectional view
of the city and have become a place of sight seeing and people watching.
With the escalators recent expansion to connect to a series of shopping
malls, the ferry terminal and new office buildings it is possible to commute
to work, go shopping, visit restaurants and travel back home without ever
leaving a covered enclosure.