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LCQ8: North East New Territories New Development Areas Planning and Engineering Study

Following is a question by the Hon Alan Leong and a written reply by the Secretary for Development, Mr Paul Chan, in the Legislative Council today (October 31):

Question:

The Development Bureau had submitted to this Council consultation documents on the North East New Territories New Development Areas (NDAs) (including the three NDAs of Kwu Tung North, Fanling North and Ping Che/Ta Kwu Ling) Planning and Engineering Study at each of the three consultation stages.  The total areas and the developable areas of the NDAs set out in those documents were different: (i) in the document submitted on November 25, 2008, the aforesaid land areas were 1 000 and 775 hectares respectively; (ii) such areas were reduced to 805 and 620 hectares respectively in the document submitted on November 24, 2009; and (iii) in the document submitted on June 28, 2012, such areas were further reduced to 787 and 533 hectares respectively.  In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the reasons for making each amendment to the total areas and the developable areas; and the land areas taken out from the developable areas by each amendment owing to a change in land use to "Village Type Development";

(b) of a breakdown, by the new land uses, of the areas of land taken out from the total areas and the developable areas by each amendment;

(c) as the Government has indicated in the Stage Three Public Engagement Digest that 167 hectares of land (accounting for 21.2% of the total areas) will be used for "Residential and Village Type Development", of the areas and percentages of land for various uses in the NDAs;

(d) among the lands mentioned in (c), of the areas of land in respect of which the Government will incorporate the terms of "Hong Kong property for Hong Kong residents" in the Conditions of Sale;

(e) of the respective areas of "Village Type Development" sites reserved for the construction of New Territories small houses in the three NDAs, and the estimated numbers of small houses which can be provided respectively in the three NDAs; and

(f) as the Government has reserved a total of 24 hectares of land for "Commercial, Research and Development" uses and another 36 hectares of land have been planned for developing special industries in the three NDAs, of the industries that the Government will develop in making use of such land?

Reply:

President,

Implementing the New Development Areas (NDAs) is to cater for the population growth and long-term housing and economic development needs in Hong Kong.  The North East New Territories (NENT) NDAs Planning and Engineering Study (the Study) aims to establish a planning and development framework for the Kwu Tung North, Fanling North and Ping Che/Ta Kwu Ling NDAs and to formulate development plans and implementation strategy.  The Study adopts a three-stage public engagement programme.  The Stage One Public Engagement, completed in early 2009, sought to solicit public views on the vision and aspirations for the NDAs and carried out analyses and basic technical assessments based on the baseline information gathered in the Study for preparing the Preliminary Outline Development Plans (PODPs) for the NDAs.  The Stage Two Public Engagement, completed in early 2010, sought to consult the public on the PODPs.  Taking into account the public views received in the Stages One and Two Public Engagement as well as the results and recommendations of the relevant technical assessments, the consultants formulated the Recommended Outline Development Plans (RODPs).  The public was consulted on the RODPs in the Stage Three Public Engagement, which ended in September this year.  The three documents mentioned in the question are for briefing the Legislative Council on the three respective public engagement exercises.

Regarding the various parts of the question, the replies are as follows:

(a) and (b) The land areas and developable areas of the NDAs stated in the Stages One to Three Public Engagement Digests are set out in Table 1.

The total area and developable area of the NDAs set out in the Stage One Public Engagement were only preliminary areas for study without any detailed land use planning concepts and specific plans.  After considering the public views and the results of various technical assessments, the consultants formulated the PODPs for the Stage Two Public Engagement, which translated various land planning concepts into specific uses.  In the Stage Three Public Engagement, the total area and developable area of the NDAs under the RODPs were reduced mainly due to excision of land with high ecological value and two villages (Ping Che and Ping Che Kat Tin), and reduction of land required for the expansion of Shek Wu Hui Sewage Treatment Works.  Furthermore, two pieces of land to the north and south of the Long Valley Nature Park and a piece of land in Fu Tei Au in Fanling North were rezoned "Agriculture" (AGR), while a piece of meander wetland to the west of Fanling North were rezoned "Conservation Area" (CA).  As a result, the area of developable land was reduced.

Three indigenous villages (namely Ho Sheung Heung Village, Yin Kong Village and Ping Che Yuen Ha Village) in the NENT NDAs were designated as "Village Type Development" ("V") zones on the PODPs in the Stage Two Public Engagement and the RODPs in the Stage Three Public Engagement.  Their areas have remained largely the same on the two outline development plans.  The three "V" zones basically fall within the relevant village environs.

(c) According to the RODPs for the NDAs in the Stage Three Public Engagement, about 167 hectares of land are zoned "Residential" ("R") and "V".  The areas zoned "R" and "V" based on different residential categories in the three NDAs are summarised in Table 2.

The areas and percentages of land for non-residential uses are detailed in the Stage Three Public Engagement Digest (www.nentnda.gov.hk/eng/Digest3_e.pdf).

(d) The policy of "Hong Kong property for Hong Kong residents" aims at giving priority to meeting the home purchasing needs of permanent residents in Hong Kong.  On implementation, the Government will, having regard to the market situations and relevant land conditions, suitably include clause(s) on "Hong Kong property for Hong Kong residents" when putting up land for sale.  We plan to incorporate where appropriate such clause(s) in the future sale of private residential land in the NENT NDAs.  Currently, there is no specific figure on the land areas concerned.

(e) The respective areas of land designated as "V" zones on the RODPs of the three NDAs are set out in Table 2.  It is a very rough estimate that after excluding the developed land, some 200 and dozens of Small Houses can be developed within the "V" zones of Kwu Tung North NDA and Ping Che/Ta Kwu Ling NDA respectively.  The relevant factors of land ownership, lot boundaries and topography have not been taken into account in estimating these figures.

(f) Land has been designated in the NDAs for promoting economic development and creating job opportunities.  According to the current planning, the 36 hectares of "Special Industries" land in Ping Che/Ta Kwu Ling NDA will provide space for the development of high value-added and non-polluting industries, industries with clear advantages and logistics industries.   About 10 hectares of land in Kwu Tung North NDA are designated for research and development uses.  The "Commercial, Research and Development" Area measuring around 14 hectares of land along Fanling Highway, with potential for various types of office, research and development as well as hotel uses, can provide space for development of the industries which Hong Kong enjoys clear advantages.


Ends/Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Issued at HKT 14:31

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