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Latest progress of phased clearance and redevelopment of Wah Fu Estate and rehousing arrangements for Phase 1a (Wah On House and Wah Lok House)
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The following is issued on behalf of the Hong Kong Housing Authority:

     The Hong Kong Housing Authority (HA) is proceeding with the redevelopment of Wah Fu Estate (WFE) on the basis of a phased approach. The proposed developments in the five Pok Fu Lam South sites, namely, Wah King Street, Wah Lok Path, Wah Fu North, Kai Lung Wan South and Kai Lung Wan North, and the existing Wah Fu Estate will serve as major reception resources for the redevelopment of WFE. The HA consulted Southern District Council (SDC) in 2021, local residents and other stakeholders to collect views on the WFE redevelopment and clearance in three phases. The proposal was generally supported. 

       "We have been exchanging views and refining the three-phased clearance proposal with tenants of Wah Fu Estate and relevant stakeholders on different occasions and during the public engagement workshops. In accordance with the latest progress, the anticipated intake date of the Phase 1 Wah King Street site will be advanced from 2027 to 2026 for rehousing tenants of Wah On House and Wah Lok House; the anticipated intake date of Wah Lok Path site in 2027 to 2028 will remain unchanged; whereas for Wah Fu North site, we have encountered an unforeseen underground condition and technical difficulties. It was identified during the construction stage that the rock head level was considerably higher than the design level adopted for the foundation design, the site formation and the project design were therefore required to be revised to reduce the amount of extra rock excavation. However, the rock excavation works could not be significantly speeded up taking into consideration possible nuisances caused to the nearby residents and the adverse impact to the existing traffic. To this end, the Housing Department (HD) and the Civil Engineering and Development Department have been working collaboratively to adjust the project design to mitigate the time and environmental implications. Despite the adjustments made, the anticipated intake date of the development will still be revised from the second half of 2028 to the first half of 2030.
 
     "In view of this situation, in order to commence the redevelopment plan as soon as possible, the original Phase 1 is further divided into two subphases of Phase 1a and Phase 1b. The Wah King Street site will be rephased as phase 1a and the Wah Lok Path and Wah Fu North site will be rephased as Phase 1b.

     ‚Äč"The anticipated intake date of phase 2 Kai Lung Wan South and Kai Lung Wan North sites will remain unchanged as from 2030 to 2031, and the anticipated intake date of Phase 3 at existing Wah Fu Estate will remain as from 2040 to 2041," said an HD spokesman.
 
     Based on the above phased redevelopment programme, the HA announced today (March 14) the clearance and rehousing arrangements for Phase 1a, which will include two blocks, i.e. Wah On House and Wah Lok House. Affected tenants will have a notification period of about 40 months before the target clearance date in July 2027 when they have to move out of their units. The HA's Subsidised Housing Committee (SHC) and Commercial Properties Committee, at a joint meeting today, approved the rehousing and associated arrangements for domestic and commercial tenants affected by the clearance exercise. 

     "There are about 900 affected households currently living in Wah On House and Wah Lok House at Wah Fu Estate. The public housing development at the nearby Wah King Street site, which will be used as the reception estate, will provide 1 208 units and will be able to accommodate all of them with the anticipated intake at the end of 2026. Affected tenants may also choose to move to refurbished public rental housing (PRH) units in any district of their choice, subject to availability of resources," a spokesman for the HA said. 
 
     "All domestic tenants affected by the clearances will be offered a Domestic Removal Allowance ranging from $10,030 to $31,910, depending on the household sizes, to help meet part of their moving expenses. One-person and two-person households may also opt to receive a Singleton/Doubleton Allowance (SA/DA) in lieu of rehousing to a PRH unit," the spokesman added. "In this regard, the meeting today endorsed the adjustment of the SA/DA rates to $78,530 and $95,790 respectively," the spokesman added. 
 
     "Affected domestic tenants in Wah On House and Wah Lok House who would like to purchase Home Ownership Scheme/Green Form Subsidised Home Ownership Scheme (GSH) flats in lieu of rehousing to PRH units will be accorded priority in flat selection in the upcoming sale exercise(s) of subsidised sale flats launched before the target clearance date. Detailed arrangements will be submitted to the SHC for consideration in due course," the spokesman said.
 
     At present, there are 23 commercial tenants affected by the clearance exercise under Phase 1a for redevelopment of the Wah Fu Estate. At today's joint meeting, members approved that eligible commercial tenants under fixed-term tenancies paying market rent will be offered an ex-gratia allowance equivalent to 15 times the monthly exclusive rent as specified in the tenancy agreement applicable on the date of formal announcement of clearance. They will also be given the opportunity to participate in restricted tender exercises for shop stalls in the HA's markets. Successful bidders will be given a three-month rent-free period under the new tenancy. If the eligible tenants give up the restricted tender opportunity, they will be granted a lump sum payment of $125,000 in lieu. 
 
     As with previous clearance exercises, a Community Service Team will be set up and stationed on-site in the estate to help maintain effective communications between the HA and affected households, in particular those of the elderly, and offer services including assistance in moving out of their existing flats and adapting to their new living environment.
 
     "The five Pok Fu Lam sites would provide a total of about 8 920 public housing units, and the number of flats in Wah Fu Estate is expected to increase from about 9 200 to about 12 200 after redevelopment. Upon completion of the whole redevelopment of Wah Fu Estate, a total of about 21 120 flats will be provided," the spokesman added.
 
Ends/Thursday, March 14, 2024
Issued at HKT 15:25
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