The Land and Development Advisory Committee (LDAC) considered the merits of four land development projects today (July 22), including two private columbarium developments in Tung Chung and South Lantau.
The Food and Health Bureau also took the opportunity to consult LDAC on the review of columbarium policy. Members supported the direction to increase supply of columbarium facilities to alleviate the present shortage and suggested various ways to increase public's acceptance of these facilities in their neighbourhood.
Of the two columbarium development proposals presented to LDAC today, the project at Nim Yuen, Tung Chung, is proposed by a private company called Uni-Creation Investment Limited, while the columbarium project at Mong Tung Wan, South Lantau is proposed by another private company, New Cheers Limited.
Members recognised that both projects were faced with complex challenges relating to compatibility with the planning intentions for the proposed development sites, land administration matters and adequacy of traffic access to the proposed sites. Members noted that these problems have made it difficult for the projects to proceed further.
The Development Opportunities Office (DOO) will notify the project proponents of the views of LDAC. As DOO is not an approving authority, it is up to the project proponents to decide whether to pursue the projects further.
During discussions of these two columbarium projects, members also expressed grave concerns about possible "destroy first, build later" activities relating to unauthorised site formation works and clearance of vegetation. Members indicated that such activities will not win sympathy for project proposals presented to LDAC.
At the meeting today, LDAC also considered the proposed relocation and expansion of Hong Kong Maritime Museum from its existing premises in Murray House in Stanley to Central Pier 8 at the Central waterfront.
Members generally supported the maritime museum project and agreed that it would showcase Hong Kong's maritime history and heritage as a major port city. They considered that a maritime museum is a befitting public facility at the waterfront of the Victoria Harbour and will draw people to the harbourfront.
LDAC also gave their support to a proposal by Hong Kong Clearwater Bay Hospital Limited to build a 235-bed private general hospital at Clear Water Bay, Sai Kung.
Members noted that the proposed private hospital is in line with the government's policy of further developing the private healthcare sector in Hong Kong. They also believed that early implementation of the project will help address the current imbalance between the public and private hospital services.
Members also supported the project proponent's proposal to seek Town Planning Board's approval of a minor relaxation in the plot ratio for the site, which is required for implementation of the project.
Ends/Thursday, July 22, 2010
Issued at HKT 22:21