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SETW visits North District

The Secretary for the Environment, Transport and Works, Dr Sarah Liao, today (June 19) visited North District to inspect the river training works at Ping Yuen River in Ta Kwu Ling and to see the venue for the 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Equestrian Game.

Accompanied by representatives from the Hong Kong Jockey Cub, Dr Liao first arrived at the Hong Kong Golf Club to see the venue for the 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Equestrian Game. The 5.7-km course with about 27 jumping obstacles will be used as one of the venues for the Cross-Country Events.

Dr Liao said she believed that Hong Kong would be able to stage very successful and impressive Olympic and Paralympic Equestrian Events, with the joint efforts of various parties.

She next went to the Ping Yuen River in Ta Kwu Ling to inspect the effectiveness of the river training works there. The area was previously a flooding blackspot, posing serious flood risk to the villagers nearby.

To solve the flooding problem in Ta Kwu Ling, the Drainage Services Department (DSD) launched a $115-million Ping Yuen River Regulation Project in May 2003. Under the project, the 3-metre river was widened to over 30 metres. Three bridges for cars and one for pedestrians were reconstructed for the convenience of villagers and maintenance works. Water plants were planted along the river and on the river bed for environmental protection.

Dr Liao learnt that with the completion of the project in February this year, the flooding situation of the areas including Ping Che Road and Ta Kwu Ling villages like Chow Tin Tsuen, Lei Uk, Fung Wong Wu, Tong Fong Tsuen and Lin Ma Hang had been significantly improved.

She was briefed by the Director of Drainage Services, Mr Wong Chee-keung, on the progress of flood prevention works in the northwestern part of the New Territories. The DSD has already completed about $4.1 billion worth of works to alleviate the flooding problem in the area while works costing $600 million are in progress and under planning.

Upon completion of the improvement works for major river channels progressively in 2007, it is expected that the overall flooding situation in northwestern New Territories will be greatly improved.

Dr Liao then moved on to visit Choi Yuen Estate in Sheung Shui and the nearby shopping centre. She met with local representatives to listen to their views and suggestions on matters relating to her policy portfolio.

Earlier this year, she visited Tsuen Wan District to see the progress of ongoing and planned public works project.

Ends/Monday, June 19, 2006