Lok On Pai ‘desalting’ plant – site visit photographs including a great surprise!

Hugh Farmer: Following our recent articles about the Lok On Pai ‘desalting’ plant I visited the site on 4th December 2014 to see what remains. We know from recent aerial photographs and maps that the main building exists extending west to east, with one main arm at right angles to this running south towards the sea.

Here’s what the site looked like around the time Chek Lap Kok airport was being built. That’s Tsing Fat Street curving around from the top left and an unamed road behind. The great surprise… read on!

Lok On Pai Lok On Pai desalting plant building used by new airport authority IDJ

And here is the approximate position of the buildings on a contemporary map. Having visited I couldn’t see the road on the right of the main building that appears here as running under it. I was able to access the main building from the main entrance on the eastern end (red spot) and a smaller entrance half way along on the northern side (blue spot). I was unable to enter the western half of the main building or the main arm.

Lok On Pai google highlight of the remaining buildings

Here are my photos with comments.  I leave it to others to explain what went on inside the desalting plant when it was functioning.

First photo: From red spot looking west down the length of the main building. This is divided by two metre high fencing into three, or possibly four, separate areas each apparently let to different users. The first one appears to use it for storage.


The eastern end of the building at red spot.


Moving down the road towards the pier.


The second building from the east, main building on the right.


The road running along the seawall. Road inaccessible – photo taken through a linked fence.


Previous photo taken behind the old Chinese truck. View of the intersection of the two buildings.


Walking between red and blue spots – rear of the main building.



The smaller entrance at blue spot.


Looking west along the outside of the main buildingspace on entering at blue spot.


Inside the main building looking back towards blue spot.  Previous photo taken just before leaving to the left. After half an hour of industrial drabness I was of course immediately struck by the curtains being illuminated from behind on a first floor platform.


I asked a man who approached. Not, as it turned out, to eject me. This turned out to be Vince Hung, Assistant Art Director for a HK film company the English name of which he didn’t know. The middle part of Lok On Pai main building is now used to construct film sets and to shoot the movies. Also Vince said music videos. An unlikely but presumably cheap spot.

Upstairs was even more colouful.


And a little further on a film set being prepared.


See: HK URBEX visit Lok On Pai Thanks to Phil for linking this.

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