Town Planning Board Guidelines revised

     The Town Planning Board today (October 17) promulgated a set of revised Guidelines for Application for Open Storage (OS) and Port Back-up (PBU) Uses.

     A spokesman for the Board said that the revision is the result of a review conducted by the Planning Department on the previous version of the Guidelines (TPB PG-No. 13D) which was promulgated in November 2005.  

     "Stakeholders, including local communities (e.g. relevant District Councils and Rural Committees), trade associations and concerned green groups, have been consulted in reviewing the Guidelines.  Written submissions from trade operators and local people on site-specific reclassification proposals have also been duly considered", the spokesman added.

     The Guidelines set out the criteria for assessing planning applications for OS and PBU uses and provide guidance for making such applications.  Rural areas in the New Territories covered by statutory plans are classified into four categories under the Guidelines with the intention to channel OS/PBU uses to specific areas, thereby preventing them from proliferating into the much wider unspoiled rural area.

     After balancing all the relevant factors, the Board agreed that 13 site-specific reclassification proposals and textual refinements were suitable for incorporation into the Guidelines and promulgation to the public.  Of the 13 reclassification proposals, 11 sites are in North-west New Territories (about 102 ha) and two sites in North-east New Territories (about 4.5 ha).  Upon reclassification, the Category 1 area where applications would normally receive favourable consideration is increased by about 36 ha, of which about 35 ha is in Ha Tsuen.  The increase in Category 4 area, where applications would normally not receive favourable consideration, by about 15 ha, is to reflect the planning intention of the concerned areas that have been rezoned to "Green Belt" on the respective statutory plan.

     "In considering possible sites for reclassification, a cautious approach has been taken and the Board has struck a balance between the demands of the trade and the need to minimise adverse impacts on local environment and residents", the spokesman said.

     The revised Guidelines (TPB PG-No. 13E) are now available at the Secretariat of the Board at 15/F, North Point Government Offices, 333 Java Road, North Point, Hong Kong (Tel: 2231 4810 or 2231 4835) and the Board's website (

     Any enquiries on the guidelines may be addressed to the Secretariat of the Board at the above address or by email (, or to the Planning Enquiry Counters of the Planning Department (hotline: 2231 5000, email: at 17/F, North Point Government Offices and 14/F, Sha Tin Government Offices, 1 Sheung Wo Che Road, Sha Tin.

Ends/Friday, October 17, 2008
Issued at HKT 12:01