LCQ 10: Pre-construction preparatory work of public works projects for public housing development

     Following is a question by Hon Wilson OR Chong-shing and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport and Housing, Mr Frank Chan Fan, in the Legislative Council today (June 24):
     The Government is taking forward public housing development projects on two sites at Pik Wan Road of Yau Tong, namely Site A at the junction of Ko Chiu Road and Ko Chiu Path as well as Site B at the junction of Ko Chiu Road and Pik Wan Road. The findings of a study released earlier by a think tank show that Site A and Site B were rezoned to residential use in 2011 or earlier and in 2014 respectively, and the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) commenced the feasibility studies in 2015 as well as the site investigation and design in 2017 for the supporting infrastructure of the public housing development projects concerned. The think tank has pointed out that the two sites do not adjoin one another and the aforesaid arrangement has caused unnecessary delay to the public housing development project on Site A. Regarding the pre-construction preparatory work of public works projects, will the Government inform this Council:
(1) of the year in which the rezoning of Site A to residential use was completed, and the reasons why CEDD did not forthwith commence the feasibility study as well as the site investigation and design for the site;
(2) of the completion dates of the site investigation and design for the two sites;
(3) of the principles or criteria based on which CEDD determines (i) when the feasibility study as well as the site investigation and design for a site should commence, and (ii) the priorities for commencing such work for various sites; and
(4) of the following information on the public housing development projects, in each year since 2013, the pre-construction preparatory work for which CEDD was responsible: (i) the name and location of the project, (ii) the time (estimated/actual) required for the feasibility study, (iii) the time (estimated/actual) required for the site investigation and design, (iv) the number of housing units involved, and (v) the latest progress (set out in a table)?

     Having consulted the Development Bureau and the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD), my reply to the question raised by the Hon Wilson OR is as follows:
(1) and (2) The Hong Kong Housing Authority (HA) is undertaking a public housing development at the area adjoining Ko Chiu Road and Pik Wan Road in Yau Tong. The project, including two parts which are Site A in the North and Site B in the South, is targeted for completion in 2027-28 by phases. It will provide a total of about 3 100 units. 
The Government earmarked Site A which had been zoned "Residential (Group A)" (R(A)) in 1985, for public housing development in 2013-14. As for Site B, the Government conducted a review on "Government, Institution or Community" (GIC) sites earlier with an intention of expanding land resources, and subsequently suggested using this site, which had been originally reserved for development of a Government clinic, for public housing development. With reference to the recommendation of the review, the Government rezoned Site B from "GIC" to "R(A)" under Cha Kwo Ling, Yau Tong, Lei Yue Mun Outline Zoning Plan (OZP) in 2013. The OZP was approved by the Chief Executive-in-Council in 2014.
After completion of the above-mentioned rezoning exercise, the Government decided to integrate the Government clinic (which was originally planned to be provided in Site B) in Site A for public housing development. HA conducted technical assessments for the development project in 2014 to 2016. Scope of the assessments included site characteristics, flat production, time required for development, and views of local communities, etc. As the location of the clinic had significant effect on the site layout, site formation and road works design, etc., the Government decided in late-2016 that a Community Health Centre including a Government clinic would be provided at Site A. CEDD conducted site investigation and design works for the project in early-2017 to late-2019; and is going to carry out site formation works in late-2020. The two sites are targeted to be handed over to HA in 2023 for public housing construction. 
(3) The Government has been adopting a multi-pronged approach, including rezoning, to increase land supply for public housing in the short, medium and long-term. For sites required rezoning, the Government will normally conduct site feasibility studies, preliminary planning and design as well as technical assessments prior to the rezoning exercise. As for the sequence of carrying out the above works, it is subject to a host of factors, including the actual conditions of individual site, availability of resources required for various works items, etc.
(4) From 2013 to present, information of the relevant feasibility studies, site investigations and/ or design consultancy agreements on public housing developments carried out by CEDD is set out at Annex. The feasibility studies and site investigation/ design works usually take about two to four years respectively, and the actual time required depends on the scale and constrain of individual site.

Ends/Wednesday, June 24, 2020
Issued at HKT 14:48