Government seeks market views on the first public-private collaboration project in the new Central Harbourfront

The Government launched today (May 19) a market sounding exercise to invite private sector's views on the potential for developing Site 4 and Site 7 in the new Central Harbourfront using a public-private collaboration (PPC) approach. The objective of the exercise is to collect views from the market on both the overall PPC approach as well as ideas as to the best potential uses of these two harbourfront sites.

"In looking at adopting a PPC approach, we hope to tap the private sector's creativity and expertise to achieve a better Central Harbourfront for Hong Kong. It is our aspiration that this approach will lead to more innovative designs, and more sustainable and flexible modes of management to deliver a vibrant, green and accessible harbourfront for public enjoyment," a spokesman for the Development Bureau said.

Site 4, located to the north of Hong Kong City Hall, will provide waterfront-related commercial and leisure uses. The site has an area of 0.93 hectare, and a maximum permissible Gross Floor Area of 7,500 square metres. Site 7, lying to the north of Site 4, is a 9.87 hectares site elongated in shape, stretching from the area fronting Central Pier No 7 to the north of CITIC Tower. It is planned to be developed into a waterfront promenade with a maximum permissible Gross Floor Area of 480 square metres. A plan showing the two sites is attached.

The idea of using PPC to develop and manage key sites in the new Central Harbourfront was recommended by the former Harbour-front Enhancement Committee in its report to the Government published in February 2010. This approach has been endorsed by its successor, the Harbourfront Commission, which is working closely with the Development Bureau to identify the best approach for the two harbourfront sites. 

"While the PPC needs to be financially viable to attract the best private sector participants, the aim of the PPC approach is to make sure that the project will meet a wide array of social objectives as drawn up by the Harbourfront Commission. These social objectives include:-

* developments on Sites 4 and 7 should cater for all walks of life, locals and tourists alike;
* the harbourfront area should be made accessible to the general public for their enjoyment at all times;
* there should be opportunities for both profit-making and non-profit making organisations to participate in the project;
* there should be community involvement throughout the different stages of the PPC process; and
* the creation of a sense of place and a quality harbourfront."

"Sites 4 and 7 are prime harbourfront sites for innovation and vibrancy. This will present to the public and private sector a challenge and an opportunity in working out the first ever collaboration of its kind to give Hong Kong the new harbourfront that the community deserves," the Bureau spokesman reiterated.

Through this market sounding exercise, the Development Bureau hopes to develop a better understanding of the possible options and arrangements relating to the PPC approach for this project, as well as generate innovative ideas on possible site uses. 

"This market sounding exercise provides respondents with an opportunity to help map out the future of Hong Kong's new Central Harbourfront," the Bureau spokesman said. "Through the demonstration of innovative, creative and viable concepts, respondents can help shape the future design briefs and development model to generate a more enduring and sustainable harbourfront for the enjoyment of the Hong Kong people and tourists alike."

At present, the Development Bureau's ideas for this project include:-

* the Government will retain ownership of the two sites;
* rather than selling the sites, the Government is considering leasing or licensing the sites to the PPC. The lease or license would be for a reasonable period, but is likely to be less than normal land lease period in Hong Kong.
* the Government does not intend to charge any land premium for this project;
* the project operator is expected to share revenue with the Government after the development has been up and running for a number of years;
* the PPC will cover Site 4 and potentially some or all of Site 7 depending on viability;
* it is the Government's intention to have a continual monitoring system with some form of public participation, such as the setting up of an advisory committee, to ensure that the sites are being developed and managed in the best public interest; and
* key performance indicators for monitoring and maintaining high performance could be introduced.

This market sounding exercise is not a pre-qualification exercise for the subsequent competitive bidding for the project. Responses from interested parties will assist Development Bureau in assessing the viability of the project as well as the possible terms and conditions for the preferred PPC approach. The Government's definition of the private sector for this project encompasses commercial and social entities, social enterprises, community-based trusts as well as different kinds of non-government organisations.

Further details as well as the full market sounding materials can be found on the Development Bureau's website ( and the website of the Harbourfront Commission ( Enquiries should be made to the Harbour Unit of the Development Bureau through e-mail to

Interested parties should submit written responses to the Development Bureau before June 30, 2011.

Ends/Thursday, May 19, 2011
Issued at HKT 20:12