LCQ14: Tin Wan concrete batching plant

Following is a question by the Hon Kam Nai-wai and a written reply by the Secretary for Development, Mrs Carrie Lam, in the Legislative Council today (January 14):


Quite a number of members of the public have relayed to me that the distance between the concrete batching plant at Tin Wan Praya Road on Hong Kong Island and the residential area is less than 500 metres, and the residents have been dissatisfied with the pollution problems created by that plant.  It is learnt that upon expiry of the land lease for the plant at the end of last year, the plant owner has informed the Lands Department that the land will be surrendered at the end of March this year.  In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether:

(a)  it knows the average daily amount of concrete batched by the above plant during 2007 and the first 10 months of 2008, and the amount and percentage of concrete batched by the plant in the total amount of concrete used by construction sites on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon and the New Territories during the said period;

(b)  it knows the date on which the plant will cease/ceased operation and when its facilities will be removed; and

(c)  it will rezone the relevant land as open space or for Social/Community/Institution use in the light of the aspiration of the residents in the area, and whether it will consider including the relevant land in the Aberdeen Tourism Project; if not, of the reasons for that?



(a)  According to the information provided by the operator, the average daily volume of concrete batched by the concrete batching plant at Tin Wan (the Tin Wan plant) during 2007 and the first 10 months of 2008 were 970 cubic metres, of which 967 cubic metres were used on Hong Kong Island, accounting for about 80% of the total amount used there.  Only 3 cubic metres, that is, a negligible percentage of the total production, were used in other areas (Kowloon and the New Territories).

(b)  In late 2008, the Lands Department was notified by the operator of the Tin Wan plant that it will not renew the land lease upon its expiry in late March 2009 at which point the land is required to be surrendered to the Government under the lease conditions.  The operator has yet to provide any details of the date on which the plant will cease/ceased operation and when its facilities will be removed.

(c)  The Tin Wan plant, situated on the only site zoned for concrete batching on Hong Kong Island, is also the primary source of concrete supply for the Island.  Concrete must be delivered to construction sites for use within a short time after production to ensure reliable quality.  Long-haul transportation will not only compromise the stability of supply but also drive up the price.  It is therefore necessary to retain at least one site for a concrete batching plant on the Island.  Although the current operator is going to vacate the site in March 2009, any decision to change the land use of the site still depends on whether the Government can identify an alternative site for concrete batching on the Island.

The Planning Department (PlanD) conducted an exercise to identify suitable sites for reprovisioning of the existing plant and came up with a list of 35 sites on Hong Kong Island.  The results were reported to the District Development and Environment Committee (DDEC) of the Southern District Council in 2008.  Nevertheless, none of these sites was considered appropriate because concrete batching will be incompatible with the land uses of adjoining sites, or there will be large scale tree felling or traffic problems.  PlanD is now conducting a new round of site search and plans to brief DDEC of the Southern District Council on its findings by mid 2009.

Given that the Tin Wan plant is separated from the Aberdeen Tourism Project by factory buildings and traffic arteries and at a distance away from the core area of the Aberdeen Typhoon Shelter, the lot concerned has very limited potential for tourism development.  If a change in land use is in order, PlanD will take into account the development needs of the Southern District and consult relevant bureaux, departments, the District Council and residents before submitting any recommendation on the change of land use for the consideration of the Town Planning Board.

Ends/Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Issued at HKT 14:32