Proposed Tramway linking Victoria and Aberdeen by Peak tunnel, 1906-1910

IDJ has sent an extract from a book by Martin Barnett published in 1984 about the history of tramways in Hong Kong.

HF: Chevalier R Pescio was an Italian with an exotic name and an alluring proposal. Namely to build a tramway between Victoria  and Aberdeen. He repeatedly tried to obtain government interest in this scheme between 1906 and 1910 but ultimately failed.

The most exciting piece of engineering was to have been a tunnel from Kennedy Road under the Peak which would have emerged above Pokfulam Reservoir. This would have been almost 2 kms in length, almost as long as the original Beacon Hill tunnel constructed for the KCR which opened in 1910. This was itself one of the greatest engineering projects in Asia at that time.

Trams in tunnels are uncommon but they do and did exist. The Kingsway tramway subway in London. The Murray Hill tunnel in New York. And the MBTA Green line in Boston and more…

What if Signor Pescio’s efforts and those of others who tried to develop the tramway system beyond the northern shoreline of HK island, in Kowloon and the NT had succeeded? It would then have been possible to have travelled from Aberdeen to the border with China, through the Italian’s  tunnel and by bridge connecting the island to Kowloon. Would this have  necessitated sleeping compartments and luxury dining sections?

Chevalier R Pescio IDJ Trams Victoris to Aberdeen cropped

Chevalier -Pescio-map-article

Source: Tramlines: The story of the Hong Kong tramway system, M Barnett, SCMP, 1984

See: Abandoned tram tunnels some examples worldwide

This article was first posted on 27th November 2014.

Related Indhhk articles:

  1.  Kowloon Trams – the when, the where but not the why not…and proposed cross harbour tram bridge!
  2. The Hongkong Electric Tramway – c1908 report and images
  3. Chevalier R Pescio – Tunnelling the Peak – proposed tramway 1906-1910
  4. Hong Kong Tramways – 1984 report
  5. Dick, Kerr and Company, Preston UK, makers of first HK Tramways cars 1904-1905
  6. Hong Kong Trams – linking 1881 and 2014 by way of 30th July 1904
  7. Definitive 1970 Hong Kong Tramways book updated and republished
  8. Alfred Dickinson, Consulting Engineer HK Tramways
  9. Alfred Dickinson, Consulting Engineer HK Tramways – further information from his great, great nephew
  10. Bus, tram and peak tram conductors
  11. Tai Koo Dockyard – 1950s general engineering including Kai Tak hangars, tramcars and wireless masts…
  12. Kowloon Trams – Proposals 1913 to 1918
  13. Tramways – 1904 proposal for Kowloon trams extending to China





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *