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Development at Wang Chau has to take into account the actual circumstances and other factors
     Regarding the Planning and Engineering Feasibility Study for Public Housing Site and Yuen Long Industrial Estate Extension at Wang Chau (P&E Study) report conducted between 2012 and 2015 by a consultancy firm, which was released yesterday, a Government spokesman reiterated today (October 19) that the study aimed to explore feasibility and therefore may not have fully considered time factor and actual circumstances.
     It was mentioned in the report that there is no "insurmountable" difficulties in the development of Wang Chau Phases 2 and 3, the spokesman noted, adding that this is exactly why the Government has been planning all along to develop Wang Chau Phases 1, 2 and 3 so as to construct 17 000 public housing units in the end.
     "Besides, developing each of Phase 1, 2 and 3 of the Wang Chau development involves certain difficulties. We have been pointing out all along that Phases 2 and 3 involve more complicated issues, which require more time to tackle.
     "We have pointed out that the purpose of the P&E Study was to study the technical feasibility of the development. Although technically feasible, preliminary procedures, in addition to works programme, will often take more time than what the technical works assessment expects. For example, the P&E Study estimated that the consultation with the Rural Committee and the District Council would take only two months. But experience tells us that, if we have to develop Phases 1, 2 and 3 in one go, formal and informal consultations with the Rural Committee and the District Council, together with other community engagement activities and consultation, would take more than two months.
     "Apart from associated works such as transport, electricity supply, sewage and the mitigation measures for tackling environmental issues, the Government also has to work out suitable measures to handle the large amount of brownfield operations, which is about 7 hectares, at Wang Chau Phases 2 and 3. Just as the Acting Secretary for Development has stated at the press conference on September 21, the Government is reviewing the relevant policies and measures with an aim of handling brownfield operations in a more comprehensive and suitable manner," the spokesman said.
Ends/Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Issued at HKT 22:03
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