Public Consultation on Building Management and Maintenance

The Government published today (December 29) a consultation paper on building management and maintenance for public comments.

Speaking at a press conference to launch the consultation exercise, the Secretary for Housing, Planning and Lands, Mr Michael Suen said, "Enhancing the management and maintenance of private buildings is part and parcel of the Bureau's mission to promote better housing and improvements to the living environment."

Mr Suen noted that the outbreak of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome in early 2003 had heightened public concern at the possible dire consequences of building neglect. It also highlighted the need to establish a strategy to tackle this long-standing problem.

"We need strong partnership between Government and relevant sectors and every individual playing his or her part in keeping buildings in good conditions.

"It is important that the community agrees with the broad policy direction to promote a better building care culture and accepts the major principles on how to achieve a good living environment. We wish to seek the public's views on these issues," he said.

The consultation document sets out, inter alia, the principle that building owners should accept their responsibility for the proper upkeep of their buildings, including the necessary financial commitment.

Mr Suen said, "To assist building owners to carry out their responsibilities, the public should consider whether the proposal to integrate building management and building maintenance would provide a sustainable solution to the building neglect problem. In the process, the provision of one-stop building management and maintenance services by the industry should facilitate owners in discharging their responsibilities.

"We have also put forward some proposed support measures to promote building management and maintenance. They include the introduction of some mandatory form of management for buildings in multiple ownership, facilitating the recovery of contributions from building owners, giving positive recognition to good management and maintenance, and providing targeted financial assistance to the genuinely needy."

"We fully appreciate that the long-standing building neglect problem cannot be resolved overnight. The aim of the consultation exercise is to generate wide public discussion on this important subject. Subject to the public response to the broad policy direction and the proposed approaches, we would then proceed to draw up the implementation details," Mr Suen added.

The consultation exercise will last until April 15, 2004. Copies of the consultation paper can be obtained from the Housing, Planning and Lands Bureau (HPLB) and District Offices. The paper is also available at the HPLB website:

Members of the public are welcome to send in their views by fax on 2845 3489, through e-mail at, or by mail to Urban Renewal Division Unit, Housing, Planning and Lands Bureau, 9th Floor, Murray Building, Garden Road, Central.

To listen to public views on the subject, two public consultation forums will be organized by HPLB. They will be held at Theatre, City Hall, Central at 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on January 20, 2004 and at Hall, Henry G. Leong Yaumatei Community Centre at 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on February 23, 2004. Members of the public are most welcome to participate in the forums.

End/Monday, December 29, 2003