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  • Definitions of Terms (Revised Version)

Revised Definitions of Terms/Broad Use Terms Used in Statutory Plans

(Important Note : -

This set of definitions is generally used by the Town Planning Board as a basis in interpreting the various planning terms used in statutory plans. It does not form part of the plan and the definitions are liable to revision.

The notes under the 'Remarks' column shall be deemed to be part of the definitions and should be read in conjunction with the definitions.

Any enquiries on these definitions should be directed to the Planning Enquiry Counter of the Planning Department (Tel No. 22315000),17/F, North Point Government Offices, 333 Java Road, North Point, Hong Kong.)

Use Definition Remarks

Fast Food Shop

Means any premises used for the selling of quick meals including drinks mainly for consumption off the premises.

[Subsumed under 'Shop and Services' unless otherwise specified]

Field Study/Education/Visitor Centre

Means any place or premises exclusively or primarily used for displaying information or conducting field study and educational programmes on the environment and related subjects.

 

Filling of Land

Means the depositing or placing of earth, gravel or any other substances on land, which results in an elevation of ground level.

 

Fire Station

Means a purpose-built premises under the management of the Fire Services Department where fire appliances and personnel are accommodated ready for immediate turn out to extinguish fires and to protect and rescue life and property in case of fire or other calamities.

It includes ambulance depot located within or co-located with fire station. It also includes fire fighting and rescue station.

[Subsumed under 'Government Use']

Fish Pond Culture

Means a pond managed for fish culture/farming activities.

It excludes fish rearing facilities such as concrete pools or tanks.

[Subsumed under 'Agricultural Use' unless otherwise specified]

Flat

Means any self-contained apartment, usually on one floor of a building, which has its own entrance, kitchen/kitchenette/pantry, living/dining room, bedroom, bathroom/toilet, and sometimes servant's quarters.

It includes duplex apartment, penthouse and apartment-like service apartment provided with central services and/or central management and communal facilities. It also includes staff quarters and Government staff quarters in the form of apartment blocks.

['Staff Quarters' and 'Government Staff Quarters' subsumed under this term and under 'House' depending on the built form]

Footbridge/Pedestrian Subway

Means any bridge or subway designed for pedestrian traffic only.

 

Footpath

Means the part of a street, cul-de-sac or access road normally reserved as a means of public passage on foot.

 

Freight Forwarding Services Centre

Means any premises used for courier and freight forwarding operations, which involve collecting, temporary storage of, sorting and despatching packages.

It excludes courier services counter for collecting and despatching small packages, which is regarded as a kind of 'Shop and Services' use.

[Subsumed under 'Cargo Handling and Forwarding Facility']

Funeral Depot

Means any place or premises used for the temporary storage of coffins and caskets with corpses within awaiting burial or cremation services.

[Subsumed under 'Funeral Facility']

Funeral Facility

Means any place or premises which provide facilities for reception, storage or treatment of human remains prior to burial or cremation services.

It includes mortuary, funeral depot, funeral parlour, funeral services centre and public funeral hall.

['Funeral Parlour', 'Funeral Depot' and 'Funeral Services Centre' subsumed under this term]

Funeral Parlour

Means a mortuary (i.e. any premises or place set apart or habitually used for reception, storage or treatment of human remains).

Adapted from Funeral Parlours Regulation of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132).

It includes public funeral hall. It excludes:

(a) the Tung Wah Hospital Repository situated at Sandy Bay, Hong Kong;

(b) any place set apart under the provisions of the Coroners Ordinance (Cap. 504) for the reception of dead bodies for the purpose of post mortem examination;

(c) any mortuary situated within the precincts of any hospital or similar institution which is maintained or controlled by the Government or by the University of Hong Kong provided for by the University of Hong Kong Ordinance (Cap. 1055) or by the Chinese University of Hong Kong provided for by the Chinese University of Hong Kong Ordinance (Cap. 1109);

(d) any mortuary situated within the precincts of any hospital carried on by a person duly registered in respect thereof under the Hospital, Nursing Homes and Maternity Homes Registration Ordinance (Cap. 165); or

(e) any mortuary which is designed as a public funeral hall under Section 123A of Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132).

[Subsumed under 'Funeral Facility']

Funeral
Services Centre

Means any premises for the specific purpose of development by the public or private sectors for services and industries in connection with funeral requirements.

It is an ancillary use of a cemetery, columbarium, crematorium and funeral facility.

[Subsumed under 'Columbarium', 'Crematorium' and 'Funeral Facility']

Garden of Remembrance

Means any place specified in Part VII of the Fifth Schedule of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132) and set aside exclusively for reception or disposal of ashes of particular persons or of persons belonging to any particular community, race or religion.

[Subsumed under 'Columbarium' and 'Crematorium' as an ancillary use]

Gas-Works

Means any premises or place where gas for heating and lighting is manufactured and stored in large quantity.

 

Golf Course

Means a large area of land where golf is played. It may include golf practice facilities such as golf driving range, and pitch and putt area.

 

Government Flying Service

Means any place or premises designed and equipped with facilities for the use of the Government Flying Service and the accommodation of their fleet of helicopters and fixed wing aircraft.

[Subsumed under 'Government Use']

Government Refuse Collection Point

Means any place at which the Director of Food and Environmental Hygiene or any authorized person provides services for the storage or removal of waste for disposal.

Adapted from the interpretation of 'Waste Collection Point' in the Public Cleansing and Prevention of Nuisances Regulation of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132).

Government Staff Quarters

Means a place of residence provided by Government for its staff and their families.

[Subsumed under 'Flat' or 'House' depending on the built form]

Government Use

Means any place, structure or premises used directly in connection with or in support of Government administration, or the provision of Government services and facilities for use by and for the benefit of the public.

It excludes uses, developments or works co-ordinated or implemented by Government which are permitted under the covering Notes.

['Driving Test Centre', 'Fire Station', 'Government Flying Service', 'Judicial Facility', 'Police Reporting Centre/Police Post', 'Police Station', 'Post Office', 'Weighing Station' and 'Vehicle Pound' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Grave

Means any place or premises for the burial of the dead including niches and storage of the bones of the dead.

['Mausoleum' and 'Ossuarium' subsumed under this term]

Hawker Bazaar

Means any place or premises for small traders to sell commodities other than foodstuff to the public.

It includes hawker centre.

[Subsumed under 'Market']

Helicopter Fuelling Station Means any station which supplies fuel to helicopters.  

Holiday Camp

Means any place where huts, cabins or other structures are put up as short-term accommodation for leisure for people on outings or on vacation.

It excludes resort type developments which could be occupied or sold as residential dwellings for long-term accommodation purpose.

It also excludes tent camping sites.

Holiday House

Means any premises located in village type houses where sleeping accommodation is provided for holidaymakers for a short period of time upon payment of a sum for the services and facilities provided.

It excludes resort type development, high-rise hotel or guesthouse development, and residential dwelling for long-term accommodation purpose.

[Subsumed under 'Hotel']

Hospital

Means any private or public establishment registered under the Hospitals, Nursing Homes and Maternity Homes Registration Ordinance (Cap. 165) for the care of the sick, injured or infirm and those who require other medical treatment.

Adapted from the Hospitals, Nursing Homes and Maternity Homes Registration Ordinance (Cap. 165).

It includes a nursing home and a maternity home.

Hotel

Means any premises whose owner, occupier or proprietor holds out that, to the extent of his available accommodation, he will provide sleeping accommodation for any person presenting himself who appears able and willing to pay a reasonable sum for the services and facilities provided and is in a fit state to be received.

Adapted from the Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Ordinance (Cap. 349).

It includes a boarding house (but not one which falls within the definition of 'Social Welfare Facility'*), common lodging house, guesthouse, holiday house, and hotel-like service apartment.

* See Remarks for 'Social Welfare Facility' regarding social welfare facilities with residential care.

['Holiday House' subsumed under this term]

House

Means a dwelling house for residential occupation, usually one to three storeys with separate rooms and supporting utility services with ancillary car park and garden.

It includes a village house, villa, bungalow, New Territories Exempted House (NTEH), town house and house-type staff quarters.

A NTEH refers to any building, the building works in respect of which are exempted by a certificate of exemption issued under Part III of the Buildings Ordinance (Application to the New Territories) Ordinance (Cap. 121).

['NTEH', 'Staff Quarters' and 'Government Staff Quarters' subsumed under this term. The latter two also subsumed under 'Flat' depending on the built form]

Ice Making Plant

Means any place or structure in which ice is made in large quantity for sale to the public.

[Subsumed under 'Industrial Use']

Industrial Use

Means the use of any place, premises or structure for the manufacture, alteration, cleansing, repairing, ornamenting, finishing, adaptation for sale, breaking up, or demolishing or transformation of goods and materials; for the storage, loading, unloading or handling of goods and cargo; or for the training, research, design and development, quality control and packaging in relation to the above processes.

Adapted from the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance (Cap. 59).

It includes manufacturing industries, non-polluting industries, motor vehicle assembly plant, food processing factory/workshop, inspection and testing centre, ice making plant, and industrial-based material recovery/ recycling facility.

It excludes offensive trades and uses which are large-scale and/or require free-standing purpose-designed premises, such as aircraft maintenance and repair plant, chemical and biochemical plant, cement manufacturing plant, electric power station, gas works, mine and quarry, oil depot, oil refinery and petrol-chemical plant, refuse disposal installation, resource recovery park and sand depot.

['Printing, Publishing and Allied Industries', 'Catering Services' and 'Services Trades' subsumed under this term or under 'Shop and Services' depending on the scale of operation]

['Ice Making Plant', 'Exhibition Support Centre', 'Construction, Utility and Other Industrial Support Workshop', 'Non-polluting Industrial Use', 'Bleaching and Dyeing Factory', 'Electroplating/Printed Circuit Board Manufacture Factory', 'Metal Casting and Treatment Factory', 'Food and Beverages Production Plant', 'Motor Vehicle Assemble Plant' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Information Technology and Telecommunications Industries

Means any establishments involved in the manufacture, design, development, production, operation, processing or assembly of, or research into, any of the following:

(a) electronic and micro-electronic systems, goods and components;

(b) information technology (IT) products and services including any computer hardware and software, contents and applications; and

(c) telecommunications facilities and telecommunications services, "telecommunications" and "telecommunications services" having the same definitions as defined in the Telecommunications Ordinance (Cap. 106).

It includes the use of any premises for the accommodation of IT and telecommunications facilities and equipment, such as gateway, exchange, switching centre, radio base station, paging centre, data centre, data processing/ computer centre, telesite or carrier hotel.

It excludes activities involving direct provision of customer services, retail services or goods related to IT and telecommunications uses, which often attract a large number of visiting members of the public to the premises.

General commercial/office uses are excluded notwithstanding that these uses may adopt, in their process of working or operation, equipment or facilities that fall within those set out in paragraphs (a) to (c).

['Telecommunications Services Centre', 'Computer/Data Processing Centre' subsumed under this term]

Institutional Use (not elsewhere specified)

Means any place or premises used by charitable organizations, non-governmental organizations, professional institutes or other non-profit making organizations, the object of which is for charitable or community purpose, or advancement of art, education, learning, literature, science or research, or promotion of the moral, social and physical well-being of the community.

It includes the headquarters and offices and centres of these organizations. It also includes consulate/consular office.

It excludes those uses which are covered under specific use terms such as religious institution, residential institution and educational institution, and those which are regarded as 'Social Welfare Facility'. It also excludes hostel or guesthouse operated by these organizations.

Judicial Facility

Means any place or premises used for the execution of the judicial functions of Government.

It includes court of final appeal, high court, magistracy, district court, coroners court, juvenile court, small claims tribunal, lands tribunal, tenancy tribunal and/or labour tribunal, and offices in connection with the above uses.

[Subsumed under 'Government Use']

Laboratory, Inspection and Testing Centre

It means any premises which provides laboratory support or inspection and testing of commercially traded articles en route for export/re-export.

[Subsumed under 'Research, Design and Development Centre']

Laboratory, Research, Design and Development Centre

Means any premises or structure where laboratory research, design and development of new or substantially modified products or processes are undertaken.

[Subsumed under 'Research, Design and Development Centre']

Library

Means any premises designated under the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132) as a library where a systematically arranged collection of library materials is kept for reading, reference and borrowing by the public or for the purposes of study or research or for other like purposes of an educational or cultural nature.

 
Local Public Works

Means any minor engineering works co-ordinated or implemented by Government including maintenance and construction of side walks, footpath, handrail, sign boards, planters, manhole, etc. that are of local significance only.

 
Logistics Centre

Means any premises which provide logistics support for business, such as freight management, inventory control, storage, packaging and consolidation of goods for distribution.

It includes distribution centre, but excludes activities providing direct customer services, which are regarded as a kind of 'Shop and Services' use.

[Subsumed under 'Cargo Handling and Forwarding Facility' unless otherwise specified]

Marina

Means any mooring areas and land areas for harbouring of pleasure boats such as yachts and cabin cruisers, including such facilities as landing steps, floating pontoons and lighthouse that are directly related to the normal operation of marine activities.

It includes such ancillary facilities as storage area for dinghies, surfing boards and small-scale workshop for boat repair and clubhouse.

['Marine Related Facilities' subsumed under this term]

Marine Fuelling Station

Means any station which supplies fuel to boats, ships and other sailing vessels.

 

Marine Related Facilities

Means such facilities as landing steps, floating pontoons, lighthouses, buoys, etc. that are directly related to the normal operation of marine activities.

[Subsumed under 'Marina']

Market

Means any public or private market in which foodstuffs and commodities are sold and services are provided, generally by small traders.  It also includes any site or area set aside as hawker centre/hawker bazaar.

It includes flea market.

['Hawker Centre' and 'Hawker Bazaar' subsumed under this term]

[Subsumed under 'Shop and Services’ unless otherwise specified]

Mass Transit Railway Vent Shaft and/or Other Structure above Ground Level other than Entrances

Means any structure above ground level other than station entrance built or to be built in connection with the operation and use of the Mass Transit Railway.

The structure may be either free-standing or incorporated in a building which main use is other than for mass transit purposes.

Massage Establishment

Means any place used or intended to be used or represented as being used for the reception or treatment of persons requiring massage or other similar service or treatment.

As defined under section 2 of the Massage Establishments Ordinance (Cap. 266).

It excludes a hospital, an establishment for medical treatment or physiotherapy operated by a registered medical practitioner or a registered physiotherapist, the premises of a hair salon, or of a beauty parlour, where massage is administered in the premises in full view of customers. It also excludes a massage establishment where no massage other than face, scalp, neck, shoulder, hand, arm or foot (up to knee) massage is administered to customers or no full-body massage is administered to a customer by a person of the opposite sex, the premises for practising Chinese medicine operated by a registered/listed Chinese medicine practitioner or for chiropractic operated by a registered chiropractor.

Mausoleum

Means any structure containing niches or coffins which provides an alternative to the provision of land for coffin burial.

[Subsumed under 'Grave']

Mine and Quarry

Means any place where works or system of works for the extraction of minerals or stones from the earth are carried out.

Adapted from the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance (Cap. 59).

Money Exchange

Means any place or premises where business is carried on to exchange money, usually of different countries, at a set rate.

[Subsumed under 'Shop and Services']

Motor-vehicle Assembly Plant

Means any place, structure or premises in which motor vehicles or their parts are manufactured or assembled.

It excludes vehicle repair workshop

[Subsumed under 'Industrial Use']

Motor-vehicle Showroom

Means any place or premises wherein motor vehicles are exhibited, displayed or demonstrated to the public.

[Subsumed under 'Shop and Services' unless otherwise specified]

Nature Reserve

Means any area managed specifically for the protection of wildlife and its habitat. Such area may be used for the promotion of educational and scientific research purposes.

['Wetland Reserve' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Nature Trail

Means any paths, including points of interest on wildlife or landscape features, developed for nature conservation and educational purposes.

 
New Territories Exempted House

Means a domestic building other than a guesthouse or a hotel; or a building primarily used for habitation, other than a guesthouse or a hotel, the ground floor of which may be used as 'Shop and Services' or 'Eating Place' , the building works in respect of which are exempted by a certificate of exemption under Part III of the Buildings Ordinance (Application to the New Territories) Ordinance (Cap. 121).

[Subsumed under 'House']

Non-polluting Industrial Use

Means any industrial use which does not involve activities that are detriment to the occupants of the building and amenity of the area by reason of noise, waste water discharge, vibration, smell, fume, smoke, soot, ash, dust or grit.

It includes mini storage, which are usually self storage facilities lease space to individuals, usually storing household goods, or to small businesses, usually storing excess inventory or archived records, but excluding the storage of any dangerous goods as specified in section 3 of the Dangerous Goods Ordinance (Cap. 295).

Technology-based Crop and Aquaculture Production (excluding those involving direct provision of customer services or goods) can be regarded as 'Non-polluting Industrial Use'.

[Subsumed under 'Industrial Use' unless otherwise specified]

Off-course Betting Centre

Means any premises providing off-course betting services to the public by the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

 

Offensive Trades

Means any trade, business, process or manufacture declared under section 48 of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132) to be an offensive trade, which causes offensive or noxious effluvia or dust or is of an offensive or harmful nature or which involves the slaughtering of animals or birds.

The current schedule of offensive trades declared under section 48 of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132) is as follows:-

1. Boiling of bones
2. Burning of bones
3. Crushing of bones
4. Scraping of bones
5. Storing of bones
6. Manufacture of chloride of lime
7. Boiling of fat
8. Fell-mongery
9. Cleaning of feathers
10. Sorting of feathers
11. Storing of feathers
12. Processing of fish meal
13. Manufacture of glue
14. Manufacture of gluten reduced starch (Tung Min) by fermentation process
15. Cleaning of hair
16. Boiling of lard
17. Dressing of leather
18. Tanning of leather
19. Crushing, packing or otherwise dealing in any way with manganese ore or manganese dioxide
20. Processing of manure
21. Boiling of resin
22. Processing of sharks' fins
23. Manufacture of size
24. Boiling of soap
25. Melting of tallow

Office

Means any premises used as a place of business and for conducting clerical, administrative, documenting and other business- or industrial-related work.

It includes audio-visual recording studio, design and media production and professional consultancy firm.

['Audio-visual Recording Studio', 'Design and Media Production', 'Office (excluding those involving direct provision of customer services or goods)' and 'Office Related to Industrial Use' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Office (other than those involving direct provision of customer services or goods)

Means any office of such uses that would not attract frequently a large number of visitors to the premises by providing direct services or goods to customers or visiting members of the general public.

[Subsumed under 'Office' unless otherwise specified]

Office Related to Industrial Use

Means any premises where the activities of a firm are in direct support of and complementary to an associated industrial operation.

It includes trading firms requiring frequent loading/ unloading and large storage space of not less than 30% of the total usable floor area of the firm within the same premises or building, which cannot be accommodated in conventional commercial/office buildings.

[Subsumed under 'Office' unless otherwise specified]

Oil Depot, Oil Refinery and Petro-chemical Plant

Oil depot means any place or plant used for the storage of oil.

Oil refinery means any place or plant where oil is refined or purified.

Petro-chemical plant means any plant in which petro-chemical products are processed, manufactured and produced.

 

On-Farm Domestic Structure

Means a residential unit on agricultural land for habitation of the farmer who works on the farm (including fish-farm).

The unit shall not exceed a maximum of two storeys and 5.18m in height with a roofed-over area not exceeding 37.2m2. (For the avoidance of doubt, such structure does not include those converted from containers.)

Open Space

Means any land with the minimum of building structure which has been reserved for either passive or active recreation and provides major or minor recreational facilities, which may be of local or district significance, which is for the use and enjoyment of the general public.

It includes park and garden, playground/playing field, promenade, pavilion, sitting out area, pedestrian area and bathing beach.

['Ancillary Beach Use', 'Beach', 'Park and Garden', 'Playground/Playing Field', 'Promenade', 'Pavilion' 'Pedestrian Circulation and Sitting Out Area' and 'Pedestrian Area' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Open Storage(not elsewhere specified)

Means any activity carried out on a site for which the greater part of the site coverage (i.e. generally assumed to be more than 50%) is uncovered and used for storage purposes.

Activities conforming to the definition comprises:

- storage of rattan and bamboo
- storage of logs and timber
- storage of ceramic/pottery products
- storage of processed agricultural products
- storage of used electrical appliances/scrap metal
- storage of cans/tanks
- storage of paper and general rubbish- storage of construction materials
- storage of construction equipment
- storage of vehicles and vehicle parts for sale or disposal
- vehicle depot

It includes storage activities in temporary structures, but excludes storage of cement/sand, chemical products and Dangerous Goods, storage of vehicle for stripping/breaking or repair, vehicle stripping/breaking yard, container storage/repair, and storage/repair of container vehicles.

['Vehicle Depot', 'Storage of Vehicles for Sale or Disposal', 'Storage of Scrap Metal' and 'Storage of Rattan and Bamboo' subsumed under this term unless otherwise specified]

Open Storage of Cement/Sand

Means any site, usually with a greater part of the site uncovered, for the storage of cement/sand.

['Sand Depot' subsumed under this term]

Open Storage of Chemical Products/ Dangerous Goods

Means any site,usually with a greater part of the site uncovered, for the storage of chemical products and/or Dangerous Goods as specified under section 3 of the Dangerous Goods Ordinance (Cap. 295).

['Storage of Chemical Products' and 'Storage of Dangerous Goods' subsumed under this term]

Ossuarium

Means any place or premises where containers for the bones of the dead are placed.

[Subsumed under 'Grave']