Land and Development Advisory Committee holds meeting

At its meeting today (May 4), the Land and Development Advisory Committee (LDAC) was briefed by the Development Bureau (DEVB) on an application in Hung Hom under the "Scheme of Facilitating Provision of Pedestrian Links by the Private Sector", and by the Planning Department (PlanD) on the proposal to sub‑divide certain commercial sites in the Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen New Development Area (HSK/HT NDA).
The "Scheme of Facilitating Provision of Pedestrian Links by the Private Sector" was introduced in 2017 to put in place a mechanism to evaluate the benefits of pedestrian links proposed by the private sector to facilitate consideration of whether land premium chargeable on the relevant lease modifications is justified to be waived. The current pedestrian link application involves a proposed footbridge connecting a redevelopment at 1 Cheong Tung Road to the existing elevated walkway network in Hung Hom which extends to Tsim Sha Tsui East via the Hung Hom MTR Station (location plan at Annex). The proposed pedestrian link will provide a 24-hour public passageway with barrier-free access that can facilitate people movement between Tsim Sha Tsui East and the northern part of Hung Hom, and is expected to serve a large population with enhanced pedestrian experience. Members considered that the proposed pedestrian link could benefit the community by improving the walkability in Hung Hom and providing pedestrians with a more direct, safe and comfortable walking environment. They were supportive of a premium waiver for the relevant lease modification arising from the application, and put forward a number of suggestions on the existing pedestrian network to further enhance pedestrian experience and accessibility. The DEVB will take into account the views of Members and work with the applicant and relevant government departments in taking forward the proposal.
In HSK/HT NDA, two town centres are planned around the proposed HSK Station and the existing Tin Shui Wai Station with concentrated commercial developments. Currently, there are 21 commercial sites (including pure commercial and mixed commercial and residential developments) at the town centres as shown on the relevant Outline Development Plan (ODP), with an average size of about 1.4ha (ranging from 0.6 to 4.3ha each). The site delineation has taken into account the planning intention for commercial development of a certain scale and requirements for large-scale public facilities, e.g. public transport interchange (PTI).
The HSK/HT NDA will be implemented under the Enhanced Conventional New Town Approach. Under this approach, the Government intends to resume and clear all private land planned for developments, and dispose of the land planned for private developments in the market. Prior to land resumption, the Government may allow in-situ land exchange applications from land owners of sites planned for private developments as shown on the ODP, subject to specified criteria and conditions. In response to calls for greater flexibility to facilitate commercial developments of diversified scales and characteristics and to enable participation of developers of different sizes in the NDA development, the PlanD has reviewed the site sizes on the ODP for the purpose of considering land exchange applications and guiding disposal of those sites should the land be resumed eventually.  On the premise of maintaining a good planning for the town centres and ensuring the functionality of individual sites, nine out of the 21 commercial sites are proposed to be sub-divided into 18 smaller sites. After the sub-division, the 30 sites would have an average size of about 1ha (ranging from 0.6 to 2.35ha each, with two sites over 2ha each accommodating a PTI).
Commenting on the proposal, some Members suggested that in finalising the ODP, the PlanD should consider a number of factors, including the need for ensuring economies of scale and design flexibility notwithstanding the good intention of providing diversity in sizes and forms, the need to ensure utilisation efficiency of smaller sites by allowing alternative designs with for example additional ingress/egress points, and the need for flexibility to cope with evolving circumstances in the future. The PlanD will take into account Members' comments in finalising the proposal. The revised ODP showing the revised site boundaries will be promulgated in due course to guide the future development for the NDA.

Ends/Tuesday, May 4, 2021
Issued at HKT 21:12