Table of Contents

Volume I

1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 EIA Requirement

1.2 Background to the Study

1.3 Revised Scope of Work

1.4 Scheme Transportation Benefits

1.5 Scope and Objectives of the EIA

1.6 EIA Report Structure

2. PROJECT DESCRIPTION

2.1 Description of the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui

2.2 Construction Contracts

2.3 Overall Project Programme

2.4 Construction Issues

3. ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION AND STANDARDS

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Noise

3.3 Air Quality

3.4 Water Quality

3.5 Land Contamination

3.6 Waste Management

3.7 Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

3.8 Landscape and Visual Issues

3.9 Hazard

4. ASSESSMENT SCOPE AND METHODOLOGY

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Spatial and Temporal Scope

4.3 Impact Assessment Terminology

4.4 Noise

4.5 Air Quality

4.6 Water Quality

4.7 Land Contamination

4.8 Waste Management

4.9 Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

4.10 Landscape and Visual Issues

5. NOISE ASSESSMENT

5.1 Noise Sensitive Receivers and Baseline Condition

5.2 Construction Phase

5.3 Operational Phase

6. AIR QUALITY

6.1 Prediction and Evaluation of Impacts

6.2 Dust Control Measures

6.3 Construction Dust Monitoring

6.4 Operational Air Quality

7. WATER QUALITY

7.1 Introduction

7.2 Construction Phase

7.3 Recommended Mitigation Measures

7.4 Operational Phase

8. LAND CONTAMINATION

8.1 Background

8.2 Exposure Assessment Methodology

8.3 Summary of Risk Assessment for the East Rail Extension

8.4 Waste Disposal Requirements

9. WASTE MANAGEMENT

9.1 Introduction

9.2 Construction Waste

9.3 Waste Management Planning

9.4 Waste Disposal Plan

10. ARCHAEOLOGY AND CULTURAL HERITAGE

10.1 Geological and Topographical Setting

10.2 Baseline Conditions

10.3 Assessment of Impacts

10.4 Recommended Mitigation

11. LANDSCAPE AND VISUAL ISSUES

11.1 Existing Landscape and Visual Context

11.2 Sources of Impact

11.3 Existing Visual Context

11.4 Landscape Planning

11.5 Assessment of Visual Impacts

11.6 Residual Impact

11.7 Land Use

12. HAZARDS

12.1 Nearby Hazardous Facilities

13. ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND AUDIT PROGRAMME

13.1 General

14. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

14.1 EIA Objectives

14.2 Overview of the EIA Findings

14.3 Conclusion of Technical Assessments

14.4 EIA Mitigation Implementation

 

ReferenceS

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY AND PHOTO/MAPS RESOURCES

 

Abbreviations

 


List of Tables

Table 3.2.1a     ANLs for Construction Noise other than Percussive Piling

Table 3.2.1b     Noise Standards for Daytime Construction Activities

Table 3.2.2a     Acceptable Noise Levels (ANLs)

Table 3.3.1a     Hong Kong Air Quality Objectives

Table 3.4.2a     Standards for Effluents Discharged into the Inshore Waters of Victoria Harbour Water Control Zone  (All units in mg/L unless otherwise stated; all figures are upper limits unless otherwise indicated)

Table 4.5.1a     Emission Factors for Site Activities

Table 4.5.1b     Dust Particle Size Distribution

Table 4.7.3a     Review of Historical Maps

Table 4.7.3b     Review of Aerial Photographs

Table 4.8.1       Marine Sediment Quality

Table 4.10.1     Landscape Impact Assessment Definition

Table 4.10.2     Landscape Impact Assessment Matrix

Table 4.10.3     Degree of Residual Impact

Table 4.10.4     Acceptability of Residual Impact

Table 5.1          Noise Sensitive Receivers - Construction Phase

Table 5.2          Noise Sensitive Receivers - Operational Phase

Table 5.3          Groundborne Noise Sensitive Receivers - Operational Phase

Table 5.4          Predicted Construction Noise Levels without Mitigation

Table 5.5a        Residual Noise Exceedances and Duration with Reduced Plant Quantity, Use of Quiet Plant and Portable Noise Barriers (Worksites 2, 5 & 5A)

Table 5.5b        Residual Noise Exceedances and Duration with KCRC Specific Measures (Worksites 6 & 7)

Table 5.6          Recommended Glazing Upgrading Requirements

Table 5.7          Maximum Permissible Sound Power Levels of TST Fixed Plant

Table 6.1          Predicted Maximum Ground Level 1-hour TSP Concentrations

Table 6.2          Predicted Maximum Ground Level 24-hour TSP Concentrations

Table 6.3          Predicted Dust Levels Due to Blasting

Table 7.1          Summary Statistics of 1997 Water Quality of Victoria Harbour WCZ

Table 8.1          Summary of Risk Categorisation

Table 8.2          Summary of Potential Risks Associated with Land Contamination and the Future East Rail Extension

Table 9.1          Estimated Volumes of Excavation

Table 9.2          Waste Disposal Transportation Evaluation

Table 10.1        The Intersection of these Maps with Highlighted Areas of Archaeological Focus

Table 11.1        Tree Survey Results

Table 11.2        Proposed New Trees by Location

Table 11.3        Visually Sensitive Receivers and Their Existing Views

Table 11.4        Construction Phase Visual Impacts

Table 11.5        Proposed Location for Transplanted Trees

Table 11.6        Summary of Mitigation Measures and Residual Impacts

Table 11.7        Summary of Mitigation Measures and Residual Visual Impacts

Table 11.8        Implementation, Management and Maintenance of Landscape Works

 

LIST OF Figures

Figure 1.1         Study Area and Rail Extension Alignment

Figure 1.2         Canton Road Alignment

Figure 2.1a       ETS Station and Pedestrian Interchange Subway Layout

Figure 2.1b       ETS Station and Pedestrian Interchange Subway Layout - Previous (Middle Road) Scheme

Figure 2.2         ETS Station Site Plan Showing Key Constraints

Figure 2.3         Typical Landscaped Deck Section

Figure 2.4         Plan of the ETS showing Cross Sections

Figure 2.5         ETS Cross Sections A & B

Figure 2.6         ETS Cross Sections C & D

Figure 2.7         ETS Cross Sections E & F

Figure 2.8a       Subway Arrangement Plan

Figure 2.8b       Middle Road Station - General Arrangement Plan at Concourse Level

Figure 2.8c       Pedestrian Interchange Subway Plan - Concourse Level

Figure 2.9a       Overrun Tunnel Plan at Tunnel Roof Level

Figure 2.9b       Overrun Tunnel Sections

Figure 2.10a     ETS Station and Salisbury Road Underpass Overlap Plan for Rail Level

Figure 2.10b     ETS Station and Salisbury Road Underpass Overlap Sections for Rail Level

Figure 2.10c     Project Works Areas

Figure 2.11       Project Agreement Baseline Programme-Tsim Sha Tsui

Figure 2.12       Typical Section Preliminary Construction Sequence of Interchange Subway

Figure 2.12(Cont’d)     Typical Section Preliminary Construction Sequence of Interchange Subway

Figure 4.1         Boreboles Located in Closest Proximity of the Middle Road Petrol Station

Figure 5.1         Location of Noise Sensitive Receivers

Figure 5.2         Locations of Vent Shaft

Figure 5.3         Location of Ho ManTin Traction Substation

Figure 5.4         Location of Above Ground Alignment

Figure 5.5         Typical Example of Movable Noise Barrier for Construction Activities

Figure 5.6         Constraints Upon the Use of Enclosure Along Mody Road

Figure 6.1         Location of Air Quality Sensitive Receivers

Figure 7.1         Water Quality Sampling Locations in Open Waters of Hong Kong in 1997

Figure 7.2         Diversion of Cooling Water Intakes and Outfalls and Drainage Pipes

Figure 8.1         Area of Potential Contaminated Landuse

Figure 9.1         Possible Spoil Disposal Routes to Hung Hom Barging Point

Figure 10.1       Early Reclamations in the Tsim Sha Tsui Area

Figure  10.2      Borehole 8 on Middle Road (Taken from Site Investigation Plan KCRC)

Figure 10.3       Looking Over Tsim Sha Tsui Bay from Signal Hill, 1860’s View

Figure 10.4       Detail of Tsim Sha Tsui Battery

Figure 10.5       Tsim Sha Tsui Battery on the Southern Tip of Kowloon

Figure 10.6       Historical Records Mentioning Tsim Sha Tsui and Kwun Chung Batteries

Figure 10.7       Signal Hill Tower and the Time-ball

Figure 10.8       Map of Kowloon, 1863, Showing Topography of early Tsim Sha Tsui.

Figure 10.9       Sketch Based on the 4-Inch “Collinson” Map, 1845

Figure 10.10     Detail of “Plan of Kowloon”; 1887 in which part of Tsim Sha Tsui Bay has already been Reclaimed

Figure 10.11     Location of Areas of Archaeological Potential

Figure 10.12     Signal Hill Retaining Wall

Figure 10.13     Signal Hill Garden

Figure 10.14     Cultural Heritage Structures, Sites and Objects on Signal Hill

Figure 10.15     Signal Hill Tower

Figure 10.16     Pre-World War II Building at Signal Hill Site

Figure 10.17     Signal Hill Battery

Figure 10.18     Iron Winch on Signal Hill

Figure 10.19     Iron Bolt for Hoisting Structure on Signal Hill

Figure 10.20     Concrete Anchor for Hoisting Structure on Signal Hill

Figure 10.21     Stone with Inscriptions on Signal Hill

Figure 10.22     Remains of Old Structures on Signal Hill

Figure 10.23     11 Mody Road

Figure 10.24     18 Mody Road

Figure 10.25     23-27 Mody Road

Figure 10.26     29 Mody Road

Figure 10.27     30 Mody Road

Figure 10.28     Hand-painted Sign, 16 Mody Road

Figure 10.29     Cultural Heritage Resources Within the Study Area

Figure 10.30     Hong Kong Island, left, and Tsim Sha Tsui, c1845

Figure 10.31     Kowloon Encampment, March 1860

Figure 10.32     Map of Kowloon Peninsula, 1860

Figure 10.33     Kowloon Royal Observatory on Signal Hill, c1916

Figure 10.34     Plan of Kowloon, 1863

Figure 10.35     Signal Hill, Clock Tower and KCR Station, c1962

Figure 10.36     Signal Hill and its Auxiliary Structures, date unknown

Figure 10.37     Signal Hill Tower

Figure 10.38     Interior of Signal Hill Tower

Figure 10.39     Viewsheds of Signal Hill Garden

Figure 10.40     Signal Hill and Holt’s Wharf, 1962

Figure 10.41     Tall Buildings Surrounding Signal Hill

Figure 10.42     Time-ball Tower of Marine Police Station, c1900

Figure 11.1       Aerial View of Eastern Part of Site

Figure 11.2       Aerial View of Western Part of Site

Figure 11.3a     Landscape Character Area

Figure 11.3b     Landscape Character Area

Figure 11.3c     Landscape Character Area

Figure 11.4       Existing View and Post Construction Photo Montage of the Ho Man Tin Site for the KCRC Traction Sub Station

Figure 11.5       Landscape Character Photographs

Figure 11.6       Landscape Character Photographs

Figure 11.7       Typical Views from Hong Kong Coliseum and Nikko Hotel

Figure 11.8       Typical Views from Nikko Hotel Looking South

Figure 11.9       Typical Views from Shangri-La Hotel Looking South

Figure 11.10     Typical Views from New World Hotel Looking North and East

Figure 11.11     Typical Views from Holiday Inn Hotel and Hyatt Regency Hotel

Figure 11.12     Champion Tree No. 250

Figure 11.13     Champion Tree No. 251

Figure 11.14a   Visual Envelope and Visually Sensitive Receiver Locations

Figure 11.14b   Visual Envelope and Visually Sensitive Receiver Locations

Figure 11.14c   Visual Envelope and Visually Sensitive Receiver Locations

Figure 11.15     Proposed Landscape Master Plan for Hung Hom to Wing On Plaza along Salisbury Road

Figure 11.15(Cont’d)   Proposed Landscape Master Plan for Hung Hom to Wing On Plaza along Salisbury Road

Figure 11.16     Proposed Landscape Master Plan for Wing On Plaza Garden

Figure 11.17     Proposed Landscape Master Plan for the Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.18a   Residual Visual Impact Assessment

Figure 11.18b   Residual Visual Impact Assessment

Figure 11.18c   Residual Visual Impact Assessment

Figure 11.19a   Post Construction Photo Montage of the Scheme as Viewed from Hotel Nikko (Low Level View)

Figure 11.19b   Post Construction Photo Montage of the Scheme as Viewed from Hotel Nikko (High Level View)

Figure 11.20     Photo Montage of the Proposed Reinstatement and Enhancement of the Landscape on Salisbury Road

Figure 11.21     Photo Montage of the Post Construction Wing On Plaza Garden

Figure 11.22     View A Existing View of Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.23     View A Post Construction Photo Montage for Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.24     View B Existing View of Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.25     View B Post Construction Photo Montage for Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.26     Aerial View of Existing Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.27     Aerial View of Reinstated Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.28     View of Existing Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground from Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade

Figure 11.29     View of Reinstated Signal Hill Garden and Middle Road Children’s Playground from Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade

Figure 11.30     View of Existing Park Entrance of Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.31     View of Proposed Station and Park Entrance of Middle Road Children’s Playground

Figure 11.32     View of Existing Roundabout Area Outside Nikko Hotel at Pedestrian Level

Figure 11.33     View of Reinstated Roundabout Area Outside Nikko Hotel at Pedestrian Level


Volume II

Appendices

APPENDIX A             EPD EIA Study Brief No. ESB-016/1998

APPENDIX B             Figure Presenting Railway Development Study Alignment Options

APPENDIX C             Cooling Water Discharge Assessment

APPENDIX D1           Sample Train Noise Calculation

APPENDIX D2           Plant Inventories for Construction Noise Predictions

APPENDIX D3           Sample Calculations for Construction Noise Predictions

APPENDIX D4           Preliminary Study on Indirect Technical Remedies

APPENDIX D5           Construction Program

APPENDIX D6           Preliminary Study on the Silent Piler

APPENDIX D7           Subway Construction Evaluation

APPENDIX D8           Details of KCRC Proposed Construction Plan for Mitigating Construction Noise of Pedestrian Interchange Subway and Middle Road Station Entrances

APPENDIX D9           Noise Mitigation Options Review

APPENDIX E              Classification of Sediments by Metal Content (mg/kg dry weight)

APPENDIX F              Sample Output Files of the FDM Model

APPENDIX G             Correspondence with Fire Services Department

APPENDIX H             Contamination Assessment Plan (CAP)

APPENDIX I               Environmental Monitoring and Audit Manual

APPENDIX J              Schedule of Mitigation Implementation

APPENDIX K             Archaeological Setting

APPENDIX L1            Tree Assessment Schedule

APPENDIX L2            Tree Survey Plan

APPENDIX L3            Evaluation of Tree Value

APPENDIX L4            Tree Transplanting Location Plan

 


1.                  Introduction

1.1              EIA Requirement

The Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation (KCRC) has commissioned Hyder Consulting Limited (Hyder) to undertake an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the proposed East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui (hereafter known as the Project).   The need for an EIA study was defined in a Preliminary Environmental Review (PER) for the proposed project completed in June 1998(1).  This report incorporated recommendations for further assessment on the key technical environmental issues and the EIA scope has been defined in the EPD Study Brief, drawing on the findings of this PER.

The proposed rail extension project is classified as a designated project under Schedule 2 of the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (EIAO) which was enacted in April 1998.  Thus, this project must comply in full with the requirements of the EIAO process.  In accordance with the EIAO a Project Profile was submitted to the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) for application of an EIA Study Brief.  Subsequently, EPD issued, under the EIAO (Cap.499) Section 5(7), an EIA Study Brief No.ESB-016/1998 for KCRC Extension from Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui.  The EPD Study Brief is presented in Appendix A.

The Study Area and rail alignment are presented in Figure 1.1 which illustrates the key project components including: above ground railway from Hung Hom Station to the cross harbour tunnel (CHT); a tunnel section along Salisbury Road and the East Tsim Sha Tsui Station (ETS) and associated access arrangements.

This project is a discrete, ‘stand-alone’ project.  However a longer term proposal is to further extend the line from East Tsim Sha Tsui to connect to the West Rail Line at West Kowloon via the Canton Road Alignment given in Figure 1.2.

1.2              Background to the Study

The KCRC operates one of the most heavily used railways in the world with over 500 train trips every day.  Projected growth requires that the existing railway network be expanded by constructing extensions to the East Rail network.

Under sections 4.4.2(f) and (g), and section 3 of Annex 20 of the Technical Memorandum on Environmental Impact Assessment Process (TMEIA) consideration of alternative alignment options is required.  The relevant studies that have considered rail alignment options are therefore discussed below.

As part of the Railway Development Study Phase II (Part 1), the Railways Development Office of the Highways Department commissioned a team of consultants to undertake a Feasibility Study for a new rail line extension to the East Rail network from Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui.  The Feasibility Study, inter alia, determined the alignment for this extension and this was reported in the Railway Development Study (RDS) Phase II (Part 1) Final Report, Tai Wai to Ma On Shan and KCR Extension to Tsim Sha Tsui, Maunsell et al, December 1997 (EFS).  The RDS Phase II Part 1 Report was presented to and endorsed by the ACE in April 1997.

The Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) Extension was studied in the RDS Phase II (Part 1), where two possible alignments were identified.  The Salisbury Road alignment is the same as the Middle Road alignment from Hung Hom in the eastern section, but from the Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel the alignment continues along and under the southern portion of Salisbury Road finishing at the Star Ferry Bus Terminal.  The station that was proposed was located under Salisbury Road between Nathan Road and Canton Road.  Construction impacts on the Space Museum, the Cultural Centre, the Peninsula Hotel and traffic flows through Tsim Sha Tsui were predicted to be significant.  A figure illustrating the two alignment options as considered in the RDS Phase II, is presented in Appendix B.

Both alignments were presented to the Urban Council through the Urban Services Department.  The Middle Road alignment was preferred to that along Salisbury Road as it better served east Tsim Sha Tsui and had less impacts during construction. For these reasons and due to the significant passenger movements and connections required with the MTR the Middle Road alignment was selected for further study. It was also considered that extension to West Kowloon could be better achieved by that alignment.

Assessment of the Middle Road alignment was undertaken by a team of consultants led by Hyder and the formal EIA submission was made to Government in December 1999.  A major concern raised by a number of Government Departments and also members of the public (at KCRC public consultation meetings) was the cutting of Signal Hill. Recent work by KCRC’s detailed design consultant, identified an alignment option which could be more easily constructed and that would avoid cutting of Signal Hill.  The revised scheme was based on the Salisbury Road alignment with the ETS located below the  Middle Road Children’s Playground.  Due to the apparent environmental benefits of this revised alignment, KCRC commissioned Hyder to undertake an EIA of the amended scheme.  This EIA report presents the findings of the revised assessment.

1.3              Revised Scope of Work

In addition to the revised rail alignment, to satisfy concerns raised by various Government Departments the project scope has now been revised from the RDS alignment as follows:

i.         The ETS station will be re-aligned closer to Salisbury Road and clear of Signal Hill with the concourse under the Middle Road Children’s Playground and Wing On Plaza Garden.  The platforms of the ETS will accommodate full 12-car trains.

ii.        The reversing sidings and overrun tunnels along Middle Road to the west of the station will be eliminated.  Short minimum length overruns are provided beyond the ends of the platforms under Salisbury Road.

iii.      The alignment of the interchange subway connecting the ETS and the Mass Transit Railway Corporation’s (MTRC) Tsim Sha Tsui Station will be revised to pass under Blenheim Avenue instead of Minden Row.  The width will be increased to enhance the capacity.  Entrances will be introduced at the junction of Mody Road/Hanoi Road and near Cornwall Avenue.

iv.       An interchange subway will also connect Wing On Plaza Garden and Mody Road via Chatham Road.

v.       A station entrance / subway along Middle Road with access on both sides of Nathan Road junction.

1.4              Scheme Transportation Benefits

The TST Extension will provide a direct KCR link to the employment areas of the Kowloon Peninsula and a second interchange at TST with the MTR, thereby relieving Kowloon Tong of increasing passenger demands.  This will improve accessibility for residents of the New Territories and provide for a more efficient and integrated rail transportation network.  Furthermore the line has the potential to be extended to connect with the Western Corridor Railway via the possible Canton Road Alignment.  This would provide a cross Kowloon link and further improve rail accessibility in Kowloon and the Territory as a whole.

The scheme is consistent with current initiatives in Government Transport Policy, which give emphasis to promoting public transportation, particularly by rail.  The further provision of mass transport facilities in a very crowded and busy location is an environmentally preferred method of transportation.

The interconnecting subways between the ETS and the MTR have been selected based on the need to minimise construction impacts and to provide the most convenient routing for the predicted passenger movements.  Subways have avoided Nathan Road due to the existing services constraints and the future option of extending this alignment beyond Nathan Road.  The subway connection route has been recommended in the Tsim Sha Tsui Interface Study Stage C, MVA - Maunsell, 1997.

1.5              Scope and Objectives of the EIA

1.5.1        Objectives

The EIA objectives are unchanged from the orginal EPD Study Brief as follows:

i.         to describe the proposed East Rail Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui Extension and associated works together with the requirements for carrying out the proposed project;

ii.       to identify and describe the elements of the community and environment likely to be affected by the proposed project, and/or likely to cause adverse impacts upon the proposed project, including both the natural and man-made environment;

iii.      to identify and quantify emission sources and determine the significance of impacts on sensitive receivers and potential affected uses;

iv.     to identify any potential landscape and visual impacts and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

v.       to propose the provision of infrastructure or mitigation measures so as to minimise pollution, environmental disturbance and nuisance during construction, operation of the proposed project;

vi.     to identify, predict and evaluate the residual (i.e. after practical mitigation) environmental impacts and cumulative effects expected to arise during the construction, operational phases of the proposed project in relation to the sensitive receivers and potential affected users;

vii.    to identify, assess and specify methods, measures and standards, to be included in the detailed design, construction, operation of the proposed projects which are necessary to mitigate these impacts and reduce them to acceptable levels;

viii.  to investigate the extent of side effects of proposed mitigation measures that may lead to other forms of impacts;

ix.     to identify constraints associated with the mitigation measures recommended in the study; and

x.       to design and specify the environmental monitoring and audit requirements necessary to ensure the implementation and the effectiveness of the environmental protection and pollution control measures adopted.

1.5.2        Scope

The scope of work for this EIA study is summarised as follows:

i.         collate and review background data and information on the project and the existing environment;

ii.        conduct field surveys of the study area;

iii.      identify sensitive receivers (SRs) within the vicinity of the study area (500m from either side and along the full stretch of the proposed railway alignment);

iv.       assess the potential environmental impacts likely to arise from the construction and operation of an approximately 1.0 km railway track, with ancillary facilities including a new station and a traction substation; and

v.        identify and recommend practical mitigation measures to reduce the potential impacts identified in the assessment.

The overall scope of work also includes:

i.         Undertake an analysis of the potential groundborne noise and vibration impacts on property adjacent to the proposed railway alignment and recommend appropriate mitigation measures where necessary.

ii.        Provide technical advice and support to any Public Consultation Programme associated with the project, including attendance at District Board, Urban Council and concern group meetings.

In accordance with the Study Brief, there are a number of technical requirements for assessing specific environmental impacts.  These are clearly defined in Clauses 3.7 to 3.13 which are noise impact assessment, hazard to life, water quality impact, construction waste management impact, land contamination impact, landscape and visual impact, and heritage impact assessment.  In order to provide a comprehensive EIA, KCRC/Hyder have included assessment in other technical areas including air quality and archaeology.

1.6              EIA Report Structure

The Report structure following this introduction is summarised as follows:

i.         Section 2 provides a general overall description of the Works associated with the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui, including the overall project programme;

ii.       Section 3 contains the relevant legislation and standards which are applicable to the study of the project;

iii.      Section 4 contains the assessment methodology used for each technical area of the project including noise, air quality, water quality, land contamination, waste management, landscape / visual and archaeology, cultural and heritage issues;

iv.     Sections 5-12 contain the assessment of each of the technical areas including findings of investigations, identification of potential impacts and recommended mitigation measures;

v.       Section 13 contains an outline of the environmental monitoring and audit requirements and programme for the project; and,

vi.     Section 14 contains the summary and conclusions of the EIA and mitigation implementation information.

The Report figures are provided on a section by section basis at the end of each section.  In addition a list of References, a Bibliography and a list of Abbreviations used in the EIA Report are provided after the main text and are followed by the Appendices.

 


2.                  project description

2.1              Description of the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui

2.1.1        Introduction

The KCRC Extension from Hung Hom to TST is formed by extending a pair of tracks from the existing East Rail Station at Hung Hom southwards into an underground East-West alignment to a station located below the Middle Road Children’s Playground.  Interchange with the MTRC TST Station located in Nathan Road will be provided from this new underground station (the ETS).  The scheme is presented in the following figures:

·        Figure 2.1a presents the ETS and pedestrian interchange subway layout in plan view.

(The equivalent figure for the pre-revised alignment (Middle Road alignment) is presented for comparison purposes as Figures 2.1b)

·        The key constraints of the ETS are shown in Figure 2.2.

·        Figure 2.3 shows a typical landscape deck section of ETS and the cross sections of the ETS are provided in Figures 2.4-2.7.

·        Figures 2.8a shows the Subway Arrangement Plan of the ETS and the Middle Road Station Entrances are shown in Figure 2.8b.  Figure 2.8c shows the pedestrian interchange subway plan at concourse level.

·        Figure 2.9a shows the overrun tunnel plan at tunnel roof level and its cross sections are shown in Figures 2.9b.

·        Figure 2.10a shows the ETS station and Salisbury Road Underpass overlap plan at rail level and Figure 2.10b shows cross sections of the overlap sections.  Figure 2.10c shows the Project Works Areas.

2.1.2        Review of Planning and Development Control Framework

The scheme falls under Kowloon Planning Area No. 1.  Approved TST Outline Zoning Plan No. S/K1/11.  The area has been developed as an important commercial and tourist centre in Kowloon.  A recent improvement in the area is the designation of an LDC Development Scheme Plan Area (the area bounded by Hanoi Road, Mody Road, Bristol Avenue and Carnarvon Road).  The site will be developed for commercial uses with public open space.

Signal Hill together with the Middle Road Children’s Playground constitutes a sizeable district open space.  The Signal Tower has been preserved and renovated to provide visitors with views of the Harbour and surrounding areas. The public promenade runs along the SE waterfront linking the Hung Hom KCRC Station and Hong Kong Coliseum with the Hong Kong Cultural Centre at the tip of Kowloon peninsula.  This is also connected to additional open space in the Wing On Plaza Garden.

Under Part II point 4 (of the Railways Ordinance Chapter 519)  a scheme has been prepared for the extension of the Railway, setting out the general nature and effects of the Project.  Authorisation and specific conditions for the scheme are determined under this Ordinance and land required for the scheme is taken to be required for a public purpose.

2.1.3        Alignment Constraints

The alignment is constrained by the following key factors:

i.         Crossing of the CHT entrance above the existing tunnel entrance;

ii.       The need to avoid private land such as the Mariner’s Club;

iii.      Champion Tree No. 251 in Salisbury Road;

iv.     Two private treaty pedestrian interchange subways under construction in Salisbury Road;

v.       Vertical height requirements to cross over the MTR in Nathan Road should this be required in future transport planning;

vi.     Significant passenger numbers which has a direct bearing on the size of the station required, platform lengths, and the routing of the subways etc.;

vii.    Utilities along Salisbury Road, Mody Road, Blenheim Avenue and Chatham Road; and

viii.   Signal Hill and its historic and cultural significance.

2.1.4        Alignment Description

On leaving Hung Hom Station the alignment enters a box structure and a 300m radius curve as it commences to descend and pass clear of the International Mail Centre (IMC) between the Hung Hom By-Pass piers and over the CHT.  It then further descends as it continues straight along Salisbury Road.  The rail level at the Station is -12.5mPD.  The Station level has been lowered to gain vertical clearance needed to design around the Salisbury Road underpass.  The Station itself is located along Salisbury Road and provides for a straight island platform which is preferred operationally.

To ensure that adequate traction power at 25kv 50Hz is available to support the extension of East Rail an additional 25kv feeder (traction) station is required.  A site or the additional traction station has been identified within the Ho Man Tin Livestock unloading sidings located to the north of Hung Hom Station.  The new traction station will be fed from China Light and Power Co. Ltd.'s 132kv supply.  Since this site is located within KCRC’s grounds and is a relatively minor structure located alongside the existing rail line, no unacceptable environmental impacts are anticipated.  Illustrations to demonstrate the low key visual impacts are provided in the Landscape and Visual Impacts Section - Section 11.

2.2              Construction Contracts

The Project will be constructed under four works contracts as described below and shown on the attached sketches.

2.2.1        Contract HCC-300 - East Tsim Sha Tsui Station

This contract comprises the following major items of work -

i.         The main station box approximately 300m long by 35m wide-excavated to a depth of about 16m below existing ground level.  This extends from Wing On Plaza Garden to the Middle Road Children’s Playground running along Salisbury Road.

ii.        A station concourse under Wing On Plaza Garden to a depth of about 16m below ground level.

iii.      Salisbury Road underpass approximately 370m long, 30m wide and up to 12m below ground level extending from the Sheraton Hotel to Wing On Plaza.  To apply for the environmental permit for the Underpass the applicant should refer to the EIA Report for Salisbury Road Underpass and Associated Road Improvement Works including Middle Road Traffic Circulation System.

iv.       All associated utility works, road works and temporary diversions.  This is a Highways Project to be entrusted to KCRC for construction.  A separate EIA report has been submitted to EPD by HyD and endorsed by the ACE in 1999.

2.2.2        Contract HCC-301 - Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui Tunnels

This contract comprises -

i.         A length of cut and cover tunnel approximately 650m long, 19m wide and up to 16m below ground level running from the CHT to opposite the Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel.

ii.        A length of partially buried tunnel from the CHT to the International Mail Centre (IMC) including the CHT crossing and a ventilation structure.

iii.      A new access road to the IMC constructed over a portion of the Harbour.

iv.       Temporary and permanent diversions of utilities, roads and footbridges, including a number of large private cooling mains.

2.2.3        Contract HCC - 302 - Subways

i.         A subway linking the new station with MTR Tsim Sha Tsui Station running under Mody Road, Blenheim Avenue and Signal Hill.

ii.        A subway / station entrance along Middle Road to Nathan Road.

2.2.4        Contract HCC 400 - Hung Hom Station and Homantin Substation

This contract comprises:

i.         Modification works to the existing Hung Hom Station to facilitate the railway extension; and

ii.       Construction of a traction substation at Ho Man Tin.

2.2.5        Landscape Design

The Landscape design:

i.         assumes a cut-and-cover method of construction, and proposes that no portion of Signal Hill is cut.

ii.        maximises flat land provision for park facilities.  This is achieved by placing various station requirements beneath a landscape deck, namely:

·          three station entrances;

·          an access road and taxi drop-off area;

·          station-related E&M facilities including  transformer rooms,  switch rooms, a generator room, and various other plant rooms including chiller rooms; and

·          Salisbury Road underpass planned pedestrian interchange subway exit (at Chatham Road).

The landscape deck will include variable planting depth typically of 2m, for successful establishment of vegetation above the deck.  The landscape deck will step down along the edge of Salisbury and Chatham Roads, at suitable distances away from the pavements, to minimise impact of the deck on the streetscape.  These stepped terraces along the Salisbury/Chatham Road pavements will be well planted, and given a sloping planting bed in certain locations, to maximise the visible presence of vegetation.

The western end of the park will remain at street level so as to preserve the Champion tree no. 251 and provide a gradual rise to the deck level.

2.3              Overall Project Programme

It is anticipated that the overall project programme from the commencement of Detailed Design in mid - 1999 to completion of all civil works will take approximately 60 months.  The civil works contract is anticipated to take approximately 44 months.  Figure 2.11 illustrates the Project Agreement Baseline Programme for the key activities.  A more detailed construction programme is included in Appendix D5.

2.4              Construction Issues

2.4.1        Construction Works Areas

The construction of the above Project is constrained by the lack of suitable working space within the immediate Study Area.  As a consequence practical construction management of materials, plant and equipment, personnel and waste arising requires careful attention in project planning.

To maintain an efficient working programme the station excavation works in Middle Road Children’s Playground and in Wing On Plaza Garden will proceed concurrently.  Also due to the lack of working space, parts of Salisbury Road would be  temporarily used as construction working areas.  All of these areas will be reinstated following the completion of the construction.

2.4.2        Tunnel Construction Methods

Salisbury Road Rail Tunnel

A number of construction techniques have been considered for the tunnel sections along existing roads with a view to minimising disturbance and overall environmental impact.  Construction of the Salisbury Road tunnel by bored tunnelling methods was  reviewed in early studies and considered to be impractical for the following reasons:

i.         insufficient cover depth; (the tunnel is exposed above ground for 0.2km of its length and for 0.4km the cover is less than the diameter of the tunnel).  For bored tunnels a two diameter cover is necessary to achieve the arching effect for safe bored tunnelling operations;

ii.       the proximity to the sea wall (the base of which is porous) creates potential stability and groundwater ingress problems for the construction works;

iii.      tunnel design normally assumes continuous ground conditions for an infinite distance either side of the tunnel or at least twice the tunnel diameter.  Again this minimum criteria can not be met because of the adjacent seawall.  The asymmetric loading would lead to instability of both the tunnel and the seawall.

iv.     the vertical alignment is constrained by the need to cross over the existing Cross Harbour Tunnel; to pass under utilities; to achieve an acceptable station platform level; and also to maintain suitable clearance across the MTRC tunnels in Nathan Road should this be required at a future date.

Cut and cover construction will therefore be used for the railway tunnel along Salisbury Road.

Pedestrian Interchange Subway

The Interchange Subway connects the new ETS station concourse under Middle Road Children’s Playground with the existing MTR Tsim Sha Tsui station concourse under Nathan Road.

For the pedestrian interchange subway connections along Mody Road, Blenheim Avenue and across Chatham Road, a shallow and broad subway is the design objective.  The level of the subway is fixed by the levels of the two railway stations to which the subway has to connect.  The concourse level of the MTRC TST station is -4.25mPD and the ETS concourse is at about -4.75mPD.  This allows the subway to be virtually level, the ideal conditions for passenger comfort and convenience and also for the installation of moving walkways to further enhance convenience.

Ground level in the area is generally between 4.0 and 4.5mPD giving a clearance above the tunnel of 3 to 3½ metres and an excavation depth of 10½ to 11 metres.  The former is adequate to allow construction under existing utilities but insufficient cover for bored tunneling techniques to be practicable.  On the other hand, the depth is such that large piling equipment does not have to be used to construct the subway using cut and cover methods.

The pedestrian interchange subway, apart from serving rail passengers, will operate as a public subway with a number of entrances/exists to ground level.  These entrances/exits include those at Bristol Avenue, Cornwall Avenue, Hanoi Road and Mody Road.  Provision will also be made for connection into the LDC Development at Hanoi Road.  A typical section preliminary construction sequence of interchange subways are shown in Figure 2.12.

Given the requirements for connecting the subway at various locations to ground level, the adoption of a deep subway (a bored tunnel would need to be 15m below existing ground level), would entail very long staircase/escalator structures, which would sterilise more land and offer little benefit to subway users in terms of comfort and convenience.  If the subway is not attractive to its users, the purpose of building it would be defeated.  Thus, cut and cover construction is proposed and it is desirable that the subway be designed as shallow as possible for the obvious benefits to its users, as well as minimising the technical difficulties during construction.  Deeper bored subways for example, at Times Square are fundamentally different.  Due to the deep MTRC Island Line, the platform level at Causeway Bay is -23.5mP.D and the subway which serves rail passengers only, is at -20mP.D.  Even if deep bored tunnel were to be adopted, there are still sections of the subway which will require cut and cover construction, e.g. at the reconnection with the MTR station box, relocation of vent shaft, entrances at Mody Road / Bristol Avenue, Cornwall Avenue, Hanoi Road, and the noise problem would be similar.  The possibility of using bored tunnels has been reviewed in detail but a number of factors rule against it.

a)      The ends of the subway are at fixed levels and the maximum permissible gradient would be about 1 in 20 thus limiting the depth to which the subway could descend.  Steps would not be acceptable from a safety point of view and would also reduce capacity.

b)      The subway varies in width from section to section, thus requiring manual techniques.  In any event, its short length would rule out mechanical shields.

c)      For much of its length the tunnel would have limited cover requiring the use of extremely slow, high risk techniques.  The specialist equipment needed to service techniques would be large and in place for a long time.

d)      The deeper subway would require large entrances using more road space and creating greater inconvenience to passengers.

e)      The entrances can not be tunnelled and the open cut can only be partially decked.  This would be likely to cause significant noise impacts related to the greater amount of cut and cover construction associated with the large entrances required for a deep bored subway.  This aspect would be likely to negate any environmental benefits associated with the bored subway.

Therefore the tunnelling method, even if possible, would be likely to result in as much, if not more, disruption and similar noise impacts than the proposed method.  The finished product would be inferior and inconvenient and there would be added risk during the construction period.

Signal Hill Bored Tunnel

The subway connection under Signal Hill will be constructed as a bored tunnel since there is sufficient rock depth in this location.  Careful construction as a bored tunnel (with strict construction contractual precautions enforced) is also considered the most appropriate construction method to ensure the protection of Signal Hill Tower and associated structures.

 


3.                  ENVIRONMENTAL Legislation and Standards

3.1              Introduction

This section describes the regulatory requirements and criteria against which the potential or predicted impacts of the construction and operation of the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui were evaluated.

Most of the relevant legislation, criteria or guidelines are those produced, adopted or accepted by the Hong Kong SAR Government.  In some cases, the provisions of international conventions and agreements may also apply; similarly, if a specific type of impact or issue is not addressed by Hong Kong SAR Government requirements, or more stringent performance requirements are considered necessary or desirable, appropriate international standards, codes of practices may be adopted.

In addition to the standards and guidelines set out below, the EIAO and the TMEIA (EIAO, Cap 499,S16) provides guidance on the methodology to be used for undertaking environmental assessment in Hong Kong.  This EIA is based on the EPD EIA Study Brief No. ESB-016/1998 and will follow the procedures as set out in the EIA Ordinance.

3.2              Noise

3.2.1        Construction Phase

Control over the generation of construction noise in Hong Kong is governed primarily by the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO) and the EIAO. Technical Memoranda (TMs), which stipulate control approaches and criteria, have been issued under the NCO and EIAO.  These TMs prescribe the permitted noise levels for construction activities depending upon working hours. The TMs, which are applicable to the control of noise from construction activities, include:

·          Technical Memorandum on Noise from Construction Work other than Percussive Piling (TM1);

·          Technical Memorandum on Noise from Construction Work in Designated Areas (TM2); and

·          TMEIA.

The NCO criteria for the  control of noise from powered mechanical equipment (PME) are dependent on the type of area containing the noise sensitive receivers (NSRs). The NCO requires that noise levels from construction activities at affected NSRs to be less than a specified Acceptable Noise Level (ANL) which depends on the Area Sensitivity Rating (ASR). The ANLs for construction work in designated areas are more stringent than those given in TM1, as  stated in Table 3.2.1a.

Table 3.2.1a    ANLs for Construction Noise other than Percussive Piling

Time Period

Area Sensitivity Ratings

 

A

B

C

All weekdays during  the evening (1900 to 2300 hours), and general holidays (including Sundays) during the day and evening times

60 (45)

65 (50)

70 (55)

All days during the night-time (2300 to 0700 hours)

45 (30)

50 (35)

55 (40)

Note: Figure in brackets are ANLs for construction work in designated areas

 

The construction activities of the proposed work will need to be planned and controlled in accordance with the NCO.  A Construction Noise Permit (CNP) is required for the use of powered mechanical equipment (PME) during the restricted hours (between 1900 and 0700 and at any time on a general holiday). The procedures set out in TM1 and 2 are used by the EPD to determine whether or not a CNP should be issued. CNPs will not automatically be granted and will be assessed on a case by case basis by the Authority. The granting of a CNP is subject to conditions stated in the permit and it may be revoked at any time for failure to comply with the stated conditions.

The use of specified powered mechanical equipment (SPME), other than percussive piling, and the undertaking of Prescribed Construction Work (PCW) during the restricted hours are controlled by TM2.  Construction plant or equipment classified as SPME under TM2 are hand-held breakers, bulldozers, concrete mixer lorries, dump trucks and poker vibrators. PCW includes the erection or dismantling of formwork or scaffolding, handling of rubble, wooden boards, steel bars, or scaffolding material, hammering, and the disposal of rubble through plastic chutes.

The Area Sensitivity Ratings assumed in this EIA report are for indicative assessment only.  Despite any description or assessment made in the EIA report on construction noise aspects, there is no guarantee that a construction noise permit (CNP) will be issued for the project construction.  The Noise control Authority will consider a well-justified CNP application, once filed, for construction works within restricted hours as guided by the relevant Technical Memoranda issued under the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO).  The Noise Control authority will take into account contemporary conditions / situations of adjoining land use and any previous complaints against construction activities at the site before making their decision in granting a CNP.  Nothing in this EIA report shall bind the Noise Control Authority in making his decision.  If a CNP is to be issued, the Noise Control Authority shall include in it any condition they think fit.

The noise impacts arising from general construction works during normal working hours (0700 to 1900 hours on any day other than Sundays or public holidays) at buildings with openable windows are assessed in accordance with the TMEIA. Table 3.2.1b presents the recommended noise standards.

Table 3.2.1b    Noise Standards for Daytime Construction Activities

Uses

Acceptable Noise Standards
(Leq, 30min dB(A))

All domestic premises including temporary housing accommodation

75

Hotels and hostels

75

Educational institutions

70

 

65
(During examinations)

 

3.2.2        Operational Phase

Noise from fixed sources will be evaluated in accordance with the TMEIA. Noise from sources such as electrical and mechanical plant will be assessed with reference to the Technical Memorandum on Noise from places, other than Domestic Premises, Public Places or Construction Sites (TM3), issued under the Noise Control Ordinance. Train operational noise will also be assessed according to the TMEIA.

Annex 5 of the TMEIA provides further criteria for assessing fixed noise sources and recommends noise limits of 5dB(A) below the NCO limits stated in Table 3.2.2a.

Table 3.2.2a    Acceptable Noise Levels (ANLs)

Time Period

Area Sensitivity Ratings

 

A

B

C

Daytime (0700 to 1900 hours)

60

65

70

Evening (1900 to 2300 hours)

 

 

 

Night-time (2300 to 0700 hours)

50

55

60

 

It should be noted that fixed noise sources are controlled under section 13 of the NCO.  At the time of investigation the Noise Control Authority shall determine noise impact from concerned fixed noise sources on the basis of prevailing legislation and practices being in force, and taking account of contemporary conditions / situations of adjoining land uses.  Nothing in this EIA report shall bind the Noise Control Authority in the Context of law enforcement against al the fixed noise sources being assessed.

The NCO do not specifically control ground borne noise and vibration from railways within buildings.  The ANL of the NCO are specified at the facade of the building for incident airborne noise impacts and for transmission of noise from building to building where these are structurally coupled.   In terms of controlling ground borne noise and vibration, common law relating to environmental nuisance will be the ultimate mechanism for abatement of unacceptable impacts.   Therefore, it will be the responsibility of KCRC to ensure an acceptable standard of design is achieved in the railway to avoid nuisance in the community. 

In defining acceptable limits for the groundborne noise, reference has been made to acceptability criteria adopted by the American Public Transportation Association and the Federal Transit Association.   Consideration was also given to typical operational conditions where these overseas criteria are based compared to the future operations of the East Rail.  Taking all these into account, a criterion in terms of maximum overall noise level of 30 dB(A) during a train passby has been defined.  It was then adopted in the PER for assessing the operational groundborne noise impacts.

3.3              Air Quality

3.3.1        Air Pollution Control Ordinance

Air quality is regulated under the provisions of the Air Pollution Control Ordinance, Cap. 311 (APCO) (Ref. 5), which controls air pollutant emissions from industrial activities and other stationary sources.  Under the current legislation, the Statement of Air Quality Objectives (AQOs), presented in Table 3.3.1a, provides the statutory AQOs for the Air Control Zones (ACZs) that have been declared for the whole of the Territory.  Certain specified processes are named under the APCO and have specific controls attached.  Thus far, the only construction activities which will be controlled as  specified processes are rock crushing and cement works (concrete batching plant), the Contractor will require a specified process licence if he needs to operate any such plant.

Table 3.3.1a    Hong Kong Air Quality Objectives

Pollutant

Concentration mg/m3 (i)
Averaging Time

 

1 Hour (ii)

8 Hours (iii)

24 Hours (iii)

3 Months (iv)

1 Year (iv)

Sulphur Dioxide

800

 

350

 

80

Total Suspended Particulates (v)

 

 

260

 

80

Respirable Suspended Particulates (v)

 

 

180

 

55

Nitrogen Dioxide

300

 

150

 

80

Carbon Monoxide

30000

10000

 

 

 

Photochemical Oxidants (as ozone) (vi)

240

 

 

 

 

Lead

 

 

 

1.5

 

(i)            Measured at 298ºK (25ºC) and 101.325 KPa(one atmosphere)

(ii)           Not to be exceeded more than three times per year.

(iii)          Not to be exceeded more than once per year.

(iv)          Arithmetic means.

(v)           Photochemical oxidants are determined by measurements of ozone only

The resultant dust levels in terms of total suspended particulates at the nearby air sensitive receptors need to be within the AQO 24-hour limit of 260mg/m3.  In addition, the dust levels at the site boundary should be controlled within an hourly limit of 500 mg/m3.  This limit is stipulated in the TMEIA and is recommended by EPD to prevent unmitigated dust impacts due to construction projects.

3.3.2        Air Pollution Control (Construction Dust) Regulation

The Regulation defines notifiable and regulatory works for achieving the purpose of dust control for a number of activities.  The Regulation requires any notifiable work shall require advance notice to EPD.  It also requires the contractor to ensure that the notifiable work and regulatory work will be carried out in accordance to the Schedule of the Regulation.  Dust control and suppression measures are provided in the Schedule.  Notifiable works are site formation; reclamation; demolition, foundation and superstructure construction for buildings; and road construction.  Regulatory works are building renovation, road opening and resurfacing, slope stabilisation, and activities which are potential sources of dust arising as given in Parts II & III of the Schedule.  Examples of these activities are stockpiling, dusty material handling, excavation, concrete production, etc.  This project is expected to include both notifiable and regulatory works.

3.4              Water Quality

The regulatory requirements and standards to protect water quality include the Water Pollution Control Ordinance (WPCO), its subsidiary technical memoranda, and various technical circulars issued by the Works Branch and the EPD as described below.  Whilst the technical circulars are non-statutory, they are generally accepted as best practice guidelines in Hong Kong and have been adopted for this assessment.

3.4.1        Water Pollution Control Ordinance (WPCO)

Under the Water Pollution Control Ordinance (WPCO), Hong Kong waters are subdivided into 10 Water Control Zones (WCZs).  Each WCZ has a designated set of statutory Water Quality Objectives (WQOs).  Works for this study fall within the Victoria Harbour Phase II WCZ and the WQOs for this WCZ will apply to any waste water discharges from the Tsim Sha Tsui works to Victoria Harbour.

3.4.2        Technical Memorandum on Standards for Effluents Discharged into Drainage and Sewerage Systems, Inland and Coastal Waters

The parameters of most concern during the construction phase will be suspended solids (SS) and dissolved oxygen (DO) levels for inshore and marine water discharge.  The WQOs against which impacts shall be assessed are as follows:

·          SS levels :  Activities during the construction phase must not cause the natural ambient SS level to be raised by more than 30% nor give rise to accumulation of SS in Victoria Harbour which may adversely affect aquatic communities; and

·          DO levels :  DO levels should not be less than 2 mg/l within 2 m of the seabed and below 4 mg/l at an average of three water depths (1 m below the water surface; mid-depth; and 1 m above sea bed) for Victoria Harbour.

All discharges during both the construction and operational phases of the TST Extension are required to comply with the Technical Memorandum for Effluents Discharged into Drainage and Sewerage Systems, Inland and Coastal Waters (TM) issued under Section 21 of the WPCO, which defines the acceptable discharge limits to different types of receiving waters.  Under the TM, effluents discharged into the drainage and sewerage systems, inshore and coastal waters of the WCZs are subject to pollutant concentration standards for particular volumes of discharge.  These are defined by the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) and specified in licence conditions for any new discharge within a WCZ.  The pertinent discharge limits for Victoria Harbour WCZ and are listed in Table 3.4.2a.

In addition, there are non-statutory guidelines to control the water quality of cooling and flushing water of the identified seawater pumping stations.  The applicable criterion of SS specified by operators of several cooling water intakes is 140 mg/l.  This limit has been recommended in the Central Reclamation Phase III, Final EIA, 28 February 1997 to be the upper tolerance threshold for SS at cooling water intakes.  Water Supplies Department (WSD) has also specified their WQOs at intake points of sea water pumping stations for toilet flushing.  The WSD's WQOs of sea water for SS and DO are less than 10 mg/l and greater than 2 mg/l, respectively.

Table 3.4.2a... Standards for Effluents Discharged into the Inshore Waters of Victoria Harbour Water Control Zone  (All units in mg/L unless otherwise stated; all figures are upper limits unless otherwise indicated)

Flow rate
(m3/day)

Determinand

£10

>10 and £200

>200 and £400

>400 and £600

>600 and £800

>800 and £1000

>1000 and £1500

>1500 and £2000

>2000 and £3000

>3000 and £4000

>4000 and £5000

>5000 and £6000

pH (pH units)

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

6-9

Temperature (oC)

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

40

Colour (lovibond units) (25 mm cell length)

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

Suspended solids

50

30

30

30

30

30

30

30

30

30

30

30

BOD

50

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

COD

100

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

80

Oil & Grease

30

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

20

Iron

15

10

10

7

5

4

2.7

2

1.3

1

0.8

0.6

Boron

5

4

3

2.7

2

1.6

1.1

0.8

0.5

0.4

0.3

0.2

Barium

5

4

3

2.7

2

1.6

1.1

0.8

0.5

0.4

0.3

0.2

Mercury

0.1

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

Cadmium

0.1

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

0.001

Other toxic metals individually

1

1

0.8

0.7

0.5

0.4

0.25

0.2

0.15

0.1

0.1

0.1

Total toxic metals

2

2

1.6

1.4

1

0.8

0.5

0.4

0.3

0.2

0.14

0.1

Cyanide

0.2

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.05

0.05

0.03

0.02

0.02

0.01

Phenols

0.5

0.5

0.5

0.3

0.25

0.2

0.13

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.1

Sulphide

5

5

5

5

5

5

2.5

2.5

1.5

1

1

0.5

Total residual chlorine

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

Total nitrogen

100

100

100

100

100

100

80

80

50

50

50

50

Total phosphorus

10

10

10

10

10

10

8

8

5

5

5

5

Surfactants (total)

20

15

15

15

15

15

10

10

10

10

10

10

E.coli (count/100 ml)

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

5000

 

3.4.3        Construction Site Drainage Guidelines

The Practical Note for Professional Persons on Construction Site Drainage (PN1/94) issued by the EPD provides basic environmental guidelines for the handling and disposal of construction site discharges to minimise impacts on water quality.

3.5              Land Contamination

The Land Contamination Assessment follows the guidelines outlined under Annex 19 section 3.1 and 3.2 of the TMEIA.  Reference has also been made to the criteria detailed within the EPD’s Practice Note for Professional Persons PN 3/94 “Contaminated Land Assessment and Remediation”, and EPD’s “Guidance Notes for Investigation and Remediation of Contaminated Sites of Petrol Filling Stations, Boatyards and Car Repair /Dismantling Workshops”, May 1999.

3.6              Waste Management

The following legislation covers the handling, treatment and disposal of wastes in Hong Kong.

·          Waste Disposal Ordinance (Cap354)

·          Waste Disposal (Chemical Waste) (General) Regulation (Cap354)

·          Land (Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance (Cap 28); and

·          Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap 132) - Public Cleansing and Prevention of Nuisances (Urban Council) and (Regional Council) By-laws.

3.6.1        Waste Disposal Ordinance

The Waste Disposal Ordinance (WDO) prohibits the unauthorised disposal of wastes, with waste defined as any substance or article which is abandoned.  Construction waste is not directly defined in the WDO but is considered to fall within the category of “Trade Waste”.  Trade Waste is defined as waste from any trade, manufacturer or business, or any waste building, or civil engineering materials.

Under the WDO, wastes can only be disposed of at a licensed site.  A breach of these regulations can lead to the imposition of a fine and/or a prison sentence.   The WDO also provides for the issuing of licences for the collection and transport of wastes.  Licences are not, however, currently issued for the collection and transport of construction and/or trade wastes.

3.6.2        Waste Disposal (Chemical Waste) ( General) Regulation

Chemical wastes as defined under the Disposal (Chemical Waste) (General)  Regulation includes any substance being scrap material, or unwanted substances specified under Schedule 1 of the regulation, if such substance or chemical occurs in  such a form, quantity or concentration so as to cause pollution or constitute a danger to health or risk of pollution to the environment.  The definition is sufficiently general that liaison with the regulators (EPD) is required to confirm whether some wastes are deemed to be chemical wastes or not.

A person should not produce, or cause to be produced, chemical wastes unless he is registered with EPD.  Any person who contravenes this requirement commits an offence and is liable upon conviction to a fine of up to HK $200,000 and to imprisonment for up to 6 months.  The current fee for registration is HK$325.

Producers of Chemical Wastes must treat their waste utilising on-site plant licensed by EPD or have a licensed collector take the wastes to a licensed facility.  For each consignment of waste, the waste producer, collector and disposer of the wastes must sign all relevant parts of a computerised trip ticket.  The system is designed to allow the transfer of wastes to be traced from site to disposal - a cradle to grave approach.

The Regulation prescribes the storage facilities to be provided on site including labelling and warning signs.  To minimise the risks of pollution and danger to human health or life, the waste producer is required by the Regulation to prepare and make available written procedures to be observed in the case of emergence due to spillage, leakage or accidents from the storage of chemical wastes.  He must provide employees with training in such procedures.

3.6.3        Land (Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance

Construction wastes which are wholly inert may be taken to public filling areas.  Public filling areas usually form part of land reclamation schemes and are operated by the CED.  The Land (Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance requires that public filling licences are obtained by individuals or companies who deliver suitable construction wastes to public filling areas.  The licences are issued by the CED as delegated from the Director of Lands.

Individual licences and windscreen stickers are issued for each vehicle involved.  Under the licence conditions public filling areas will accept only inert building debris, soil, rock and broken concrete.  There is no size limitation on the rock and broken concrete, and a small amount timber mixed with other suitable material is permissible.  The material should, however, be free from marine mud, household refuse, plastic, metal, industrial and chemical waste, animal and vegetable matter or any other material considered unsuitable by the dump supervisor.

3.6.4        Public Cleansing and Prevention of Nuisance by-Laws

These by-Laws provide further control on the illegal tipping of wastes on unauthorised (unlicensed) sites.  The illegal dumping of wastes can lead to fines of up to HK$200,000 and imprisonment for up to 6 months.

3.6.5        Other Relevant Documents and Guidelines

The following documents and guidelines also relate to waste management and disposal in Hong Kong:

·          Waste Disposal Plan for Hong Kong (December 1989), Planning Environment and Lands Branch, Hong Kong Government Secretariat;

·          Works Bureau Technical Circular No. 5/98 On Site Sorting of Construction Waste on Demolition Sites;

·          Environmental Guidelines for Planning in Hong Kong (1990), Hong Kong Planning and Standards Guidelines, Hong Kong Government; and

·          New Disposal Arrangements for Construction Waste (1992), Environmental Protection Department and Civil Engineering Department.

3.7              Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

3.7.1        EIA Ordinance

The two criteria for evaluating impacts to cultural heritage sites are specified in Annex 10 of the TMEIA:

a)      The general presumption in favour of the protection and conservation of all sites of cultural heritage because they provide an essential, finite and irreplaceable link between the past and the future and are points of reference and identity for culture and tradition.

b)      Adverse impacts on sites of cultural heritage shall be kept to the absolute minimum."

3.7.2        Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap 53)

The EIAO (Ord. No. 9 of 1997, Schedule 1, A262) further specifies that "sites of cultural heritage mean an antiquity or monument, whether being a place, building, site or structure or a relic, as defined in the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap. 53) and any place, building, site or structure or a relic identified by the AMO to be of archaeological, historical or palaeontological significance."

Therefore, to an important extent, questions of significance are resolved by the AMO which, in its Ordinance and after consultation with the "Authority" and the AAB, is given the power to "declare monuments" (Cap. 53, Section 3), only 67 of which have been so "declared" since 1976.  In its mission to survey, record and preserve Hong Kong's cultural heritage, the AMO and AAB use an internal reference system, with no statutory status, according to three grades:

Grade I:      a building of 'outstanding' merit which should be preserved at all costs;

Grade II:    a building of 'special' merit, thus efforts should be made to selectively preserve; and

Grade III:   a building of 'some' merit, but not yet qualified for consideration as a possible monument.

Most of the cultural heritage resources in the Study Area are not "declared"; only the Signal Hill Tower has been assigned a Grade (II), AMO Reference 770006.  However, several sites of cultural heritage in the Study Area provide "essential, finite and irreplaceable links" between the past and future, and are "points of reference and identity for culture and tradition" in Hong Kong.  They are considered to be of cultural interest, even if not declared as monuments.

Under the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap 53) the Antiquities Authority (the Secretary for Home Affairs) may, after consultation with the Antiquities Advisory Board (AAB) and with Government approval, declare any place, building, site or structure which the Antiquities Authority considers to be of public interest by reason of its historical, archaeological or palaeontological significance, to be a monument, historical building, archaeological or palaeontological site or structure.  Once declared to be a site of public interest, no person may undertake acts which are prohibited under the Ordinance, such as to demolish or carry on building or other works, without permission from the Antiquities Authority.

The Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) of the Home Affairs Bureau acts as  the executive arm of the Antiquities Authority.  The AMO also serves the Antiquities Advisory Board (AAB) who are responsible for advising the Government on sites which merit protection.  The office has responsibility for the protection of buildings and items of historical interest and areas of archaeological significance.  The search for excavation of all archaeological material is regulated and monitored by the Antiquities Authority who require applicants to hold a license from the Antiquities Authority.

Archaeological sites are identified and recorded by the AMO as they are revealed through systematic survey, casual finding and/or the EIA process.  All such archaeological sites are considered to be of cultural heritage value and their preservation in totality must be taken as the primary aim of the EIA process.

3.7.3        Criteria for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment (CCHIA).

Criteria for the assessment of cultural heritage are presented in Annex 10 and Annex 19 of the TMEIA but more specific requirements and guidelines are set out  by The Home Affairs Bureau in the Criteria for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment (CCHIA).  The CCHIA stipulate that if this is not possible, amelioration must be achieved by the reduction of potential impacts and preservation be means of detailed cartographic and photographic survey or preservation of an archaeological site “by record”, i.e. through excavation to extract the maximum data as the very last resort.  Projects are not to cause excessive impact on archaeological and historically important sites unless there is adequate protection or mitigation measures or a satisfactory rescue plan is proposed.

3.7.4        Assessing cultural significance: applying commonly accepted, professional criteria and standards

Before assessing the impact of any proposed activities within the Study Area, it is fundamental to understand what makes the site important.  In other words, what is its significance?  The problem is that the question of significance is difficult to define with absolute precision in the case of any cultural resource.

As explained in the methodology (Section 4.12), although the EIAO provides the AMO with the final determination of significance, the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance does not precisely define significance.  Furthermore, the Ordinance limits the AMO to a declaration of "monuments" rather than to "districts" or historic areas more broadly conceived.  To assist the AAB in its rating of buildings, AMO has used a non-statutory grading system.  However, this system is not particularly well-suited to deal with a constellation of culturally significant resources in a Study Area such as the ones at issue here.  Therefore, in addition to AMO's criteria, our Study Team has also looked at commonly accepted professional criteria from beyond Hong Kong that are concerned with the significance of cultural heritage sites. 

Several internationally-recognised organisations have specified standards and criteria that address the issue of how to specify significance.  Some documents, such as the International Charter for the Conservation and Restoration of Monuments and Sites (the Venice Charter), focus primarily on architectural "monuments", while others such as UNESCO's World Heritage List highlight cultural sites that have been deemed to be "of outstanding universal value."  Given Signal Hill Tower's situation as a Grade II historic building that seems to embody less than "universal value", it is more appropriate to turn to other sources for guidance about the significance of cultural heritage sites in the Study Area.  To better understand the significance of such sites, we have therefore primarily used the measures of the following organisations and/or documents dealing with significance published by these organisations.  They are:  (1) the World Monuments Fund [hereafter WMF]; (2) the U.S. National Register Program and the National Council for Preservation Education [USA]; and (3) the Australia ICOMOS charter for the conservation of places of cultural significance [the Burra Charter]. 

3.7.5        International Standards

The WMF, a private non-profit organisation founded in 1965, established a World Monuments Watch program in 1995, for which it defined significance as "the intrinsic artistic and/or historic importance of a site within its cultural context."  The WMF emphasises varying, as opposed to absolute standards of significance.  These include (a) a site's influence on other sites, (b) a site's being a symbol of an economic system, (c) a site's links to industrial and technological development, (d) a site's relationship to a larger architectural movement, or (e) a site's reflection of vernacular and traditional culture.  Underlying these varying standards is the fact that "in order to meet the criterion of significance.  it is necessary that a site have importance within its cultural context, defined in artistic, social, economic, technological, or traditional terms2."  As demonstrated below, Signal Hill has importance within its cultural context, as defined by several of these terms.

3.7.6        U.S. Standard

The U.S. National Park Service (NPS) administers the National Register Program, where criteria for significance are spelled out in federal legislation (36 CFR 60).  The National Council for Preservation Education (NCPE), a non-profit organisation with a mission to advance preservation education both in academe and among the general public, has been at the forefront of ongoing efforts in the U.S. to better understand what the WMF calls "varying standards of significance."  In March 1997, for example, NCPE along with the NPS organised a major conference that centered on the question of historical significance, which "should be interpreted as encompassing both tangible and intangible realms of the past; that is, both the built environment and the myriad of forces that have given it shape and meaning over time3."  Avoiding a precise textbook definition, several professional presentations at this conference emphasised how complex the definitions of significance had become since 1966, when the National Register was established using criteria for national, state and local significance.  Using any of the measures of significance articulated at the NCPE conference, Signal Hill has clear local, and possibly national significance.

3.7.7        Australian Standard

Since its creation in 1979, the Burra Charter has become not only "the standard for heritage conservation practice in Australia", but also a fundamental conservation document for use world-wide "to express the basic principles and procedures that should be followed in looking after important places4."  In Article 1 the Charter defines "cultural significance" as the "aesthetic, historic, scientific or social value for past, present or future generations."  As demonstrated below, Signal Hill embodies cultural significance in all four of these respects.

3.8              Landscape and Visual Issues

The methodology for undertaking the landscape and visual impact assessment is in  accordance with Annex 18 of the TMEIA.  The main elements of the assessment are given below.

The Landscape and Visual Impacts are considered as follows :

·          landscape impact assessment shall assess the source and magnitude of developmental effects on the existing landscape elements, character and quality in the context of the site and its environs; and

·          visual impact assessment shall assess the source and magnitude of effects caused by the proposed development on the existing views, visual amenity, character and quality of the visually sensitive receivers within the context of the site and its environs.

These are evaluated in accordance with Annex 10 of the TMEIA.

3.9              Hazard

The requirement to undertake the hazard assessment performed as part of the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui EIA is defined in the EPD Study Brief for “the storage of explosives on-site”. Since explosives are not to be stored overnight on the site, as specified in the Study Brief, no requirement of a hazard assessment for explosive transport and storage is considered necessary in this study.

 


4.                  ASSESSMENT SCOPE and METHODOLOGY

4.1              Introduction

The scale and complexity of the East Rail Extension Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui requires that a carefully structured, systematic and consistent approach is applied to the EIA process.  This section defines the physical and temporal scope of the overall project and each of the various specialist assessment tasks, defines the meaning of terminology that may be used to describe assessment outcomes in particular specialist areas, and presents the impact predication methodologies to be employed in the various assessment tasks.

4.2              Spatial and Temporal Scope

4.2.1        Spatial Scope

In its broadest sense, the spatial scope of the EIA is the physical area over which changes to the environment are likely to occur as a result of the Project.  In practice, the spatial scope will be limited to those areas where there is a reasonable likelihood of change to the environment resulting in impacts on resources or receivers.

The actual physical scope will differ between the specialist areas of assessment discussed in the following sections. For example, the assessment of impacts to landuse will be limited to areas of land to be acquired for the construction and operation of the new railway.  By contrast, the assessment of changes to visual amenity may be extended beyond an initial study corridor of 500 metres either side of the alignment, if it is felt that sensitive visual receivers at greater distances will be adversely affected by the construction of the new railway.

4.2.2        Temporal Scope

The temporal scope of the EIA is the same for each of the specialist disciplines.  For assessing impacts arising from construction activities, the temporal scope is from the date of commencement of site works (assumed to be the Year 2000) to the date immediately prior to the opening of the railway (assumed to be 2004).

It is assumed that this rail extension will reach design capacity approximately 10 years after commissioning.  Therefore, the temporal scope for assessing operational impacts covers the period from commissioning to 2011.  The assessment of impacts in 2011 makes allowance for planned changes to the baseline conditions in the intervening period.

Environmental impacts likely to arise from the decommissioning of the railway are not included in the scope of the EIA as it has been assumed that this section of the East Rail Extension will be operational for the foreseeable future.

4.3              Impact Assessment Terminology

In evaluating and describing an impact, an EIA assessment must consider the standards and criteria (whether quantitative or qualitative) set out in the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance and the associated Technical Memorandum.    In some cases, especially where qualitative criteria are used or where no specific criteria exist, a consensus of professional judgement about the acceptability or significance of an impact may be sought.

However, the significance of an impact is not merely a measure of its compliance with a standard or criteria nor of its perceived acceptability.  Significance may also involve questions of :

·          The magnitude of the impact and the size of the exceedance;

·          The number of people affected and their sensitivity;

·          The scale or amount of the resources affected and their value and sensitivity; and

·          The tractability of the issue or problem.

A number of different approaches are being taken in describing predicated impacts in this EIA study.

Firstly, for areas where quantified standards or criteria are used, an impact may be described as acceptable or in compliance (on the one hand) and unacceptable or failing to comply (on the other hand).  Generally speaking, an impact which does not comply is considered as significant, and the measure of its significance will take into account the factors listed above.  Impacts relating to air quality, water quality, noise, waste management and hazards are evaluated in this way.

Secondly, issues such as impacts on landscape for which no quantitative criteria are applied are described with terms indicating a gradation of significance.  For example, landscape impacts are rated as “very slight”, “slight”, “moderate”, “substantial” or “very substantial”.

Finally, areas such as archaeology and culture, landuse and land contamination use no particular terminology for acceptability or significance, relying largely on professional judgement and common terms of speech to describe the importance and significance of impacts.

4.4              Noise

4.4.1        Construction Phase

The assessment of construction noise impacts has identified all existing and committed landuses in the vicinity of the development, selected representative receivers which are generally nearest to the alignment, using specific information obtained from engineering design consultants concerning activity scheduling and plant teams and following the methodology stated in TM1 (see Section 3.2), and quantified the expected impacts at the receivers.  References are also made from BS5228 in case suitable noise data of specific construction plant are not available from TM1.  The technical methodology outlined in TM1 is as follows:

i.         locate NSRs that may be affected;

ii.        determine plant items for corresponding construction activities based on information provided by the engineering design consultants;

iii.      determine the sound power levels of the plant items according to the information stated in TM1;

iv.       calculate the correction factors including facade correction, distance and barrier attenuation;

v.        predict the construction noise levels at the NSRs in the absence of any mitigation measures.

Mitigation measures are then evaluated and recommended where necessary to control the impacts at the affected NSRs adequately.

4.4.2        Blasting

Although the blasting may give rise to noise and vibration impacts, there are no statutory procedures and criteria under the NCO and EIAO for assessing these impacts.  They are beyond the scope of the EIA.

The administrative and procedural control of all blasting operations in Hong Kong is vested in the Mines and Quarries Division (M&Q) of the Civil Engineering Department (CED).  The M&Q require a blasting assessment to be carried out by qualified blasting specialists.  The contractual controls on blasting will provide mitigation of possible impacts on nearby sensitive landuses.  In order to minimize the risk of loss in human life and damage to properties (including the Signal Hill Tower), the maximum charge to be detonated for the blasting will be limited.  The number of blasts per day is unlikely to be more than one and blasting will be limited to daytime only.  The blasting will be part of the excavation activity for the ETS construction.  The excavation will take about 15 months.  In addition, liaison campaigns to adequately inform the nearby community prior to any blasting activity will be launched to minimise possible nuisance or complaints.

4.4.3        Operational Phase

The operational noise impact assessment has followed the Technical Memorandum for the Assessment of Noise from Places Other Than Domestic Premises, Public Places or Construction Sites (TM3). The operational noise criteria are described in Section 3.2.2.

The study area is classified as urban, an Area Sensitivity Rating of B has been assigned in the assessment for the NSRs that are not influenced by road traffic noise from major roads. Whilst an Area Sensitivity Rating of C has been assigned for the NSRs that are influenced by road traffic noise from main roads, either directly or indirectly.

The Area Sensitivity Rating for the NSRs located near Nathan Road (between Mody Road and Salisbury Road) and Mody Road (between Nathan Road and Chatham Road South) should be “B”.  As described in “The Annual Traffic Census 1997” published by the Transport Department, the AADT figures on the Cross Harbour Tunnel Approach Road and Princess Margaret Road are above 30,000 vehicles, thus, these roads are considered as “Influencing Factors”. The Area Sensitivity Rating for the NSRs near Kowloon (Hung Hom) Station and Ho Man Tin Traction Substation is therefore “C”.

Fixed Plant Noise

The assessment of the fixed plant noise has employed standard acoustic principles in the prediction of the maximum at-source noise levels to ensure acceptability in the receiving environment. These maximum noise levels should be used by the detailed design team to devise mitigation, (including equipment enclosures and silencers) in order to meet acceptable noise limits at NSRs.

Train Noise

Airborne train noise has been modelled using a methodology agreed with the EPD.  (see Appendix D1) for calculating the Leq(period) in the reference time bands given by the HKPSG and NCO, and uses comparative source data for the electric multiple unit (EMU) provided by KCRC. Only passenger trains will be running on the Hung Hom to Tsim Sha Tsui Extension.

The train noise source term of an EMU has been provided by the KCRC with a maximum 86dB(A) at a distance of 25m and speed of 100 kph. It is based on the EMU source term for East Rail Spur line.  The standard formulae used in the prediction methodology for the proposed alignment are shown in Appendix D1.  A conservative approach is adopted for predicting the train noise by assuming a train speed of 100kph although it is likely to be lower.

4.5              Air Quality

4.5.1        Construction Phase

Air sensitive receivers (ASRs) are defined in Annex 12 of the TMEIA.  They include any domestic premises, hotels, hospitals, clinics, nurseries, temporary housing accommodation, schools, educational institutions, offices, factories, shops, shopping centres, places of public worship, libraries, courts of law, sports stadiums, performance arts centres.  Other premises or places with which, in terms of duration or number of people affected, has a similar sensitivity to air pollution as the above premises and places is  also considered to be air sensitive.

Potential dust impacts on the ASRs have been predicted with the aid of the US EPA approved model, Fugitive Dust Model (FDM), specifically designed for computing dust dispersion from fugitive dust emission sources.

Emission rates of the dust sources and their corresponding particle size distribution used in the model have been estimated based on the PER and the USEPA publication, Compilation of Air Pollutant Emission Factors, 5th Edition (AP-42).  Emission factors for various site activities are given in Table 4.5.1a, while the assumed size distribution of dust particle are given in Table 4.5.1b.

Table 4.5.1a    Emission Factors for Site Activities

Activities

Emission Factors

Remarks

Material Handling

1.96 x 10 -7 g m-2s-1

Ref: PER

Excavation

1.89 x 10 -7 g m-2s-1

Ref: PER

Hauling on Paved Roads within station worksites

1.008 x 10 -3 g m-1s-1

Ref: AP-42 Sect 13.2.1

·       silt loading: 2.4 g m-2

·       vehicle weight: 30 tons

·       trucks per day

·       control efficiency with watering: 50%

Blasting

27.5 g blast-1

AP-42 Section 11.9-5.

Assume blast area width of 5 m x 5 m, and blasting point 2m above ground level

 

Table 4.5.1b    Dust Particle Size Distribution

Dust Size (mm)

Particle Fraction  (1)

 

Material handling/ Excavation

Paved Road

2.5

0.095

0.031

5.0

0.105

0.0

10

0.16

0.0131

15

0.14

0.156

30

0.50

0.682

Note:  (1) Reference: Compilation of Air Pollutant Emission Factors, 5th Edition, USEPA

 

A full year sequential meteorological data, measured at Hong Kong Observatory’s Tsim Sha Tsui Station, were used for the modelling.  The data include air temperature, wind speed, wind direction, Pasquill stability class and atmospheric mixing height.

The construction of Salisbury Underpass is entrusted to the East Rail Extensions works, and their cumulative impact has been assessed in this Study.  Both the maximum 1-hour and 24-hour cumulative TSP levels at the ASRs have been predicted. The annual average TSP level of 87 mg m-3 recorded at the nearest EPD fixed air quality monitoring station, Central /Western Station, was included as the background.

The 24 hour dust levels from the East Rail construction are extrapolated from the one hour maximum levels, and assumed for a twelve hour daily working period.  Therefore, the 24-hour average corresponds to 50% of the modelling results that assume a full day operation.

To assess the blasting activities, it has been confirmed that the frequency of blasting will be no more than one per day; and a complete blasting event is expected to last for approximately an hour.  There will be no concurrent activities being undertaken within the same site when blasting takes place.  Therefore, blasting dust impacts have been assessed separately from other activities.  The 1-hour TSP levels for blasting have been assessed separately from other site activities.  The 1-hour TSP levels have been predicted at downwind distances up to 200 m from the blasting site. 

4.5.2        Operational Phase

No significant operational impacts are anticipated since the trains will run on electricity and operate mostly underground.  Any exhaust vents connected to the ventilation shafts are expected to be orientated to face away from the nearest ASRs.

4.6              Water Quality

4.6.1        Spatial Scope

Land based impacts may comprise both point and non point (via surface water runoff, construction site erosion etc.) sources of water pollution.  Thus, the water quality assessment study area encompasses both local and directly affected waters, and water sensitive receivers(WSRs) located downstream and remote from the proposed works.

4.6.2        Construction Phase

Introduction

Potential water quality impacts during the construction phase comprise land-based and marine impacts.  Drainage Impact Assessment (DIA) was conducted by the KCRC’s appointed consultant5, to establish engineering solutions to reduce impacts of the East Rail construction on drainage systems.  The detailed water quality assessment in this Final Assessment Report has condensed the DIA findings and recommendations in terms of ensuring the adequacy of environmental protection of water sensitive receivers (WSRs).

Prediction Methodology

Present construction designs were reviewed to assess the proximity of the East Rail Extension construction activities to existing and committed WSRs.  All WSRs were identified in accordance with the guidance provided in the HKPSG, the EIAO TM and through detailed literature reviews, supplemented where necessary by field surveys and area appraisals.

Construction type, sequence and duration were reviewed to identify activities likely to impact upon identified water bodies and WSRs.

Following the identification of WSRs and potential water quality impacts, the scale, extent and severity of potential net (i.e. unmitigated) construction impacts were evaluated, wherever possible quantitatively, taking into account all potential cumulative effects including those of adjacent projects, with reference to the WPCO criteria.

Where net water quality impacts were predicted to exceed the appropriate WPCO criteria, practical water pollution control measures / mitigation proposals were identified to ensure compliance with reference to the WPCO criteria for the beneficial uses of the marine water bodies and fresh water courses.

4.6.3        Operational Phase

Introduction

It is currently expected that water quality impacts during the operation of the railway will not be significant.  In addition to the construction phase DIA, an operational phase DIA was conducted by the engineering Design Consultants to establish engineering solutions to reduce impacts of the East Rail operational drainage on downstream drainage systems.

General Land and Marine Impacts

The railway alignment has been reviewed to assess the proximity of the rail or any associated operational facilities to existing and future committed WSRs.

Following the review of the East Rail operation, the potential adverse effects, scale, extent and severity of potential net (i.e. unmitigated) impacts were assessed and evaluated, wherever possible quantitatively, taking into account all potential cumulative effects.   Water quality impacts were assessed with reference to the Water Quality Objectives and the assessment criteria in Annex 6 of the TMEIA.

4.7              Land Contamination

The Land Contamination Assessment follows the guidelines outlined in Annex 19 sections 3.1 and 3.2 of the TMEIA, as required under Clause 3.11 of the Study Brief.  Reference has also been made to the criteria detailed within the  Practice Note for Professional Persons PN 3/94 “Contaminated Land Assessment and Remediation”, where appropriate.

A review of the historical and current land use was undertaken as part of the PER1.  This indicated the potential for land contamination based upon previous industrial usage and the existance of underground oil storage tanks associated with the petrol filling station located on Middle Road. 

4.7.1        Methodology

The objectives of the Land Contamination Assessment have been :

i.         to identify any potential for contaminants to be present in the ground from current and historic land use activities within the study area;

ii.       to determine whether migration pathways exist for any of the identified contaminants;

iii.      to determine the presence and likely extent of any potential risks to the environment, to the proposed works or to site users/workers;

iv.     to collate and assess all the available information which can then be used to determine the design and scope of any more detailed site investigations prior to consideration of the waste disposal options or design of any remedial works.

The Land Contamination Assessment comprised a desk-based study in conjunction with a walkover of the study area.  No intrusive site investigation or analysis was undertaken as part of this assessment.  The assessment has included the following activities:

i.         review of information detailed within the PER undertaken for the project;

ii.       review of geological, hydrogeological and hydrological information from earlier geotechnical reports to establish environmental sensitivities at the site and its environs;

iii.      review of historical maps and aerial photographs to identify previous usage of the study area and its immediate surroundings in order to identify potential sources of land contamination;

iv.     contact with the regulatory authorities in order to obtain information on the identified fuel installations;

v.       walkover of the study area to assess current land uses;

vi.     preparation of a report, outlining the findings and recommendations, including requirements for any further work.

4.7.2        Current Land Use

A walkover of the study area was carried out on 18th March 1999.  Current land use within the study area comprises mixed retail, commercial and some residential properties.  The Middle Road Children’s Playground, the Wing On Plaza Garden and the TST promenade are the key areas of public open space in the Study Area.  The Hong Kong Coliseum and International Mailing Centre lie to the south of Hung Hom Station and the Cross Harbour Tunnel Road and toll gate to the west.  The Hong Kong Coliseum and Hung Hom Station are elevated on an engineered podium and along the east of Salisbury Road the undercroft area is used as a truck/bus parking depot.

Hotel, retail and commercial properties are located along the Salisbury Road and Middle Road sections of the Extension.  A petrol filling station (operated by Caltex) is located on Middle Road, to the immediate west of the Middle Road Children’s Playground.

No current industrial land uses have been identified within the study area and no potential sources of land contamination have been identified from current uses other than the petrol filling station on Middle Road and a fuel installation located at the CHT  toll gate.

Details on both fuel installations were requested from site management6 and the Fire Services Department (FSD) who are responsible for licence issue under the Dangerous Goods Ordinance.  Information was requested on the nature of the installations (location, capacity, installation dates, construction design), maintenance records (including tank integrity test results) and potential likelihood that any spillage’s / leakage’s may have taken place.  FSD reported (see Appendix G) that since the issue of both licences there are no records of any supply/storage tank or fuel line failure/leakage, at either of the installations.  No other fuel installations have been identified within the vicinity of the East Rail Extension.

Consultation with Caltex also indicated that there are no records of any tank or fuel line failures or repairs since May 1997, when Caltex took possession of the site from Shell Hong Kong Ltd.  Three underground storage tanks serve the petrol station (11,375 litre capacity for each) and are located to the immediate east of the site, within the Middle Road Children’s playground with fuel lines behind the road.  Tank integrity tests performed in July 1997 demonstrated that the installations were sound and in good condition.  Installation dates for the tanks were not available.  The petrol station site is leased by Caltex from the Government Property Agency and the tenancy expires in May 2000.  Under the lease agreement, Caltex are not under any obligation to remove the fuel installations (including underground tanks, lines, etc.). 

The Cross Harbour Tunnel Co. Ltd., supplied limited information regarding their installation at the CHT toll gate although they reported that there were no records of any tank failures, repairs or leakage.  The underground fuel tank has a 1500 gallon capacity and was installed in 1972.  There are no records of any tank integrity tests being performed.

4.7.3        Historic Land Use

To obtain information on the historical use of the study area (and the surrounding area) the maps and aerial photographs as summarised in Tables 4.7.3a and Table 4.7.3b were reviewed :

Table 4.7.3a    Review of Historical Maps

Scale

Date

Description of land use

8 inches : 1 mile

1863

TST area designated as planned “battery” with limited reclamation. Study area principally not reclaimed.

8 inches : 1 mile

1887

Limited reclamation and development .  Majority of TST labelled as “War Department” land.

8 inches : 1 mile

1902-1903

Further reclamation of TST and some limited development.  Railway line runs adjacent to the alignment of Chatham Road, cuts across Salisbury Road to the south of Middle Road and then south of Salisbury Road into Kowloon Station.  Sidings and go-downs to the south of Salisbury Road on reclaimed land

8 inches : 1 mile

1924

As per 1902.

8 inches : 1 mile

1947

Expansion of go downs and docks to the south of Salisbury Road.  Recreation grounds between the railway and Chatham Road. 

4 inches : 1 mile

1964

Railways lines etc.…as per 1947 although reclamation works to the east in progress.

1 : 15,000

1990

Reclamation of the study area complete.  Hung Hom Station moved to current location.

Source: Mapping Hong Kong.  A Historical Atlas.  H Empson

 

Table 4.7.3b    Review of Aerial Photographs

Date

Description of Land Use

1963

Railway line, station and sidings located to the south of Salisbury Road.  Godowns and piers present to the south of Middle Road and Salisbury Road, open area to the west and adjacent to the Middle Road Children’s Playground.

1967

Railway as per 1963.  Building now located to the west of Middle Road Children’s Playground.

1968

As per 1967.

1969

As per 1967.

1972

As per 1967.

1975

Petrol filling station on Middle Road appears to be present.  Railway lines still in place although go down area to the south of Salisbury Road appears to be under construction.

1984

Reclamation/construction to the south of Salisbury Road on-going.  Railway line removed.  

1986

Reclamation complete.  Construction appears to be on-going within parts of the area south of Salisbury Road.

1988

Construction appears complete.

1991

No discernible changes.

 

The earliest map reviewed dated from 1863 indicated that the majority of the area of the proposed East Rail Extension was un-reclaimed.  The area of Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) remained relatively undeveloped except for battery and military use.  Reclamation works were evident throughout TST from 1863 and extend eastwards.  By 1902, the Kowloon-Canton Railway line runs adjacent to the existing alignment of Chatham Road on reclaimed land, cutting across Salisbury Road to the south of Middle Road and terminating south of Salisbury Road at Kowloon Station.  Godowns and piers are also located to the south of Salisbury Road and to the east of Kowloon station on reclaimed land. 

By 1947 some expansion of the godowns and piers to the south of Salisbury Road are apparent, with recreation grounds located between the railway line and Chatham Road.  There are no discernible changes in land use until 1964 when extensive reclamation works are evident within the study area and to the east of TST.  The railway line and Kowloon station have been removed by 1984 and construction works within the reclamation area appear complete by 1988.

4.7.4        Geology

The geological map (Sheet 11, HGM20, 1:20,000) shows the majority of the area of the East Rail Extension to be underlain by reclaimed land.  Reclamation works are indicated on the geological map to have commenced as early as 1904, with the majority of the East Rail Extension reclaimed by 1964. 

The area of the proposed  ETS Station and associated underpasses through Signal Hill and along Mody Road, are the sole areas of the Extension which are directly underlain by natural ground, which comprises a medium grained granite.

A geotechnical investigation for the preliminary design work for the East Rail Extension was carried out and reported in 1998 (Maunsells 1998).  This geotechnical report identified that the area from Hung Hom to the Kolwoon Shangri-la Hotel (located on Salisbury Road) is covered by fill ranging from 6m to 15m in thickness.  The fill typically comprises a silty fine sand, with variable quantities of concrete and brick fragments, which is underlain by silty marine sand and sand deposits. 

From the Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel to just east of Chatham Road, fill thickness ranges from between 3m to 13m.  To the west of Chatham Road and towards the area of the proposed station, Signal Hill rock head is present.  The site investigation indicated that Signal Hill comprises between 0.9-3m of fill, overlying 16-24m of weathered granite which is in turn underlain by unweathered granite (bedrock).

Borehole logs (using the geotechnical report’s references) for EREBH10 (located in the Middle Road Children’s Playground) indicate a fill depth of 1.9m comprising slightly silty sand, underlain by extremely weak, completely to highly decomposed granite.  Within EREBH8 and EREBH9 (located along Middle Road) fill was present to depths between 6m to 7.9m below ground level and underlain by extremely weak, completely decomposed granite.  The borehole locations are given in Figure 4.1.  No environmental analysis of soil or groundwater samples was carried out as part of the geotechnical investigation.

4.7.5        Groundwater

The groundwater regime was monitored and reported within the geotechnical investigation (Maunsells 1998).  Within the Middle Road area, the groundwater level varies between 2.9 to 0.2 mPD (ground surface at 4.2 to 3.6 mPD).  Along Salisbury Road to Hung Hom Station groundwater levels vary from 1.7 to 1.4 mPD (ground surface and conditions similar to Middle Road). 

In view of the extent of hardstanding throughout the area, variations in groundwater levels recorded are likely to predominantly be a result of tidal influence, with fluctuations reported to correlate with tidal changes according to the geotechnical investigation.

4.7.6        Surface / Coastal Waters

The TST area is heavily developed and predominantly covered by buildings and hardstanding.  Surface water run-off therefore discharges to storm water sewers and into Victoria Harbour.  No surface water courses are present within the area of the East Rail Extension.

Victoria Harbour is within 50m (at its closest point) of the Extension, which was gazetted as the Victoria Harbour (Phase 2) Water Quality Zone in 1995 under the Water Pollution Control Ordinance. 

Water quality within Victoria Harbour is affected by industrial, sewage and cooling water discharges.  A sewage outfall, located off TST promenade discharges into Victoria Harbour and monitoring results reported within the EPD Marine Water Quality Report (1997) indicate non compliance with Water Quality Objectives (WQOs) for total inorganic nitrogen and an increasing trend in E-coli concentrations, which were also exceeded. 

4.8              Waste Management

4.8.1        Assessment Factors

The assessment and evaluation of environmental impacts from waste generation is based on three factors:

i.         the type and rate of waste generated;

ii.       the amount of main waste types generated; and

iii.      the proposed reuse, backfilling, storage, transport, treatment and disposal methods, and the impacts of these methods.

4.8.2        Prediction and Evaluation of Impacts

The nature and amount of the waste arising from the construction of the Project and the potential environmental impacts which may arise from their handling, storage, transport and disposal are discussed in detail under the headings of each waste type.  The criteria for evaluating waste management implications are taken from Annex 7 of the TMEIA.  The types of waste arising and the disposal options are discussed below:


4.8.3        Public Fill

Public fill materials will, where practicable, be reused in abutments and miscellaneous work such as landscaping, whilst excess materials comprising of inert rock and sand will be taken to reclamation sites or public filling areas as advised by the Fill Management Committee.  Given the inert nature of this material, reuse on-site or in reclamation construction is unlikely to have any unacceptable environmental impacts relating to its disposal.  However, the handling and transportation of this material will require assessment and evaluation to determine the most favourable options.   Given the location of the project, transportation by barge would be favoured providing suitable handling arrangements can be determined.

4.8.4        Construction and Demolition Waste

The storage, handling, transport and disposal of construction and demolition wastes have the potential to create similar visual, water, dust and associated traffic impacts to those associated with the storage and disposal of excavated materials as described above.  However, the impacts related to demolition wastes will potentially be greater than those relating to construction because of the larger volumes to be handled, the dust generating nature of the materials and the activities necessary to sort and store demolition wastes.  As such, consideration should also be given to demolition wastes.

The only source of demolition waste is from the works associated with the existing Hung Hom Station.  It should be determined, prior to demolition, whether any of the materials comprising the demolition wastes are asbestos materials.  If this is the case, an asbestos abatement plan must be drafted including specific mitigation measures relating to asbestos removal and disposal.

The disposal of construction and demolition wastes is unlikely to raise any long term concerns because of the nature of most construction wastes.  In accordance with an EPD policy, implemented to conserve void space at landfill sites, construction waste must not be disposed of at a landfill site if it contains more than 20% inert material by volume.  Segregation of wastes at construction sites therefore is necessary before disposing of inert materials at public filling areas for reclamation works and putrescible materials at controlled landfill sites.  The segregation of materials to prevent wastes from going to landfill will also assist in minimising costs should landfill charges be introduced.

Construction and demolition wastes currently form approximately 35% of the annual take-up of limited landfill void available in Hong Kong, although this proportion has varied over recent years.  Therefore, it is important to minimise, wherever possible, the waste being delivered to landfill.

4.8.5        Marine Sediment

The construction of the proposed International Mail Centre Access Road, may involve a need to excavate and dispose of a very small quantity of marine sediments from one piling location.  In view of known historic industrial discharges into Victoria Harbour, there is a potential that sediment materials are contaminated.

The quality, quantity and programme for the removal of sediment will be assessed in accordance with the EPD TC No. 1-1-92, Classification of Dredged Sediment for Marine Disposal. Sediment Quality

The EPD Marine Water Quality Report (1997) was reviewed to obtain preliminary data on the likelihood of sediment contamination.  Analytical data for sediment samples collected within close proximity to the proposed location of the access road indicated that materials would be classified as contaminated and would require special disposal requirements.  Data is summarised within Table 4.8.1 below:

Table 4.8.1      Marine Sediment Quality

Determinand

Concentration

Classification according to
Technical Circular No. 1-1-92

Cadmium

0.0-0.9 mg/kg

A

Chromium

0-49 mg/kg

A

Copper

³65 mg/kg

C

Lead

0-64 mg/kg

A

Mercury

0-0.7 mg/kg

A

Nickel

0-34 mg/kg

A

Zinc

0-140 mg/kg

A

PCBs

11-20 mg/kg

**

PAHs

>200 mg/kg

**

**no criteria quoted within the Technical Circular.

 

The guideline values (metal) detailed within the EPD Technical Circular are presented within Appendix E.  For the 7 metals analysed, all results were grouped as Class A (uncontaminated), except for copper which is Class C (unsuitable for normal marine disposal).  Values for organic determinands (PAHs, PCBs) are not defined within No. 1-1-92.  It is also noted that a new sediment management framework will be in place in the year 2002.

One of the supporting columns of the proposed access road is in the Harbour water.  The potential impact on the sediment regime in Victoria Harbour will be assessed.

4.8.6        Chemical Waste

Chemical wastes may pose serious environmental and health and safety hazards if not stored and disposed of in an appropriate manner as outlined in the Chemical Waste Regulations and the Code of Practice on the Packaging, Labelling and storage of Chemical Wastes (Chemical Waste COP).  The hazards include.

i.         toxic effects to workers;

ii.       adverse effects on air, water and land from spills;

iii.      fire hazards; and

iv.     biological disruption to sewage treatment works where waste enters the sewage system.

Chemical wastes will arise principally as a result of maintenance activities.  It is difficult to quantify the amount of chemical wastes which will arise from construction activities since it will be highly dependent on the Contractor’s on-site maintenance intentions and the amount of plant and vehicles utilised.

4.8.7        General Refuse

The storage of general refuse has the potential to give rise to adverse environmental impacts.  These include odour if waste is not collected frequently, windblown litter, water quality impacts if waste enters water bodies and visual impact.  The sites may also attract pests, vermin and other disease vectors if the waste storage area is not well maintained and cleaned regularly.  In addition, disposal of wastes, at sites other than approved landfills, can also lead to similar adverse impacts at those sites.

4.9              Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

The Archaeological and Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment programme comprised four tasks as follows:

4.9.1        Data Collection

This task involved the collection of data regarding the geology and geomorphology of the area including: geological maps, borehole data, early maps of the area and aerial photographs. The data has been used to reconstruct the topography and landforms within the study area at various times during history and prehistory. Information has also been collated regarding historic land use and any possible structural remains, which may be under the present surface.

A desktop study was conducted by consulting several libraries, archives and offices that hold information regarding the Study Area.  These included the Antiquities and Monuments Office, the Lands Department, the Public Records Office, the Hong Kong History Museum and libraries at Hong Kong University and the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  Some data was graphic in nature (e.g., historic maps and aerial photographs) while other data was more documentary (e.g., archival records and historic anecdotes).  To better understand the cultural significance of the sites in question, this data was complemented with architectural information that helps place the sites in a proper contemporary context.

4.9.2        Detailed Field Evaluation and Watching Brief Programme

To assess the value of relevant archaelogical and cultural heritage sites, it was fundamental to visit the Study Area and understand the remaining historic fabric of the sites that are potentially impacted by the proposed development.  An initial reconnaissance-level survey of the site was made and then, having studied historic maps and aerial photographs, significant landscape features and historic objects were studied in subsequent visits.  The Signal Hill Tower was examined carefully to better comprehend its technological, stylistic and structural nature.  Other structures and objects at the Signal Hill site and adjacent to it within the Study Area were also scrutinised, which has seen dramatic landscape changes, especially since 1907 when the Tower was erected.  Field investigations supplemented the desktop study.

A programme of field evaluation of impacted areas of Signal Hill  has been designed. In addition, a programme has been outlined for the  monitoring and retrieval of data and archaeological material within an urban development context.

4.9.3        Assessment of Archaeological Potential

Data from the previous tasks has been examined in the light of the planned engineering works and a map of archaeological potential prepared indicating areas where deposits might be expected to occur, and the potential nature of the deposits.

4.9.4        Assessment of Potential Impacts on Archaeological Resources and Sites of Cultural Heritage

To the extent possible with currently available documentation, attempt has been made to ascertain the areas of potential effect implied by the proposed developments.  However, a truly comprehensive inventory of potential impacts has been limited by the following factors:

i.         access to the site's entirety was denied (e.g., for safety reasons, not being able to access the steep, extreme southern end of the Signal Hill site); and

ii.        some of those impacts (e.g., from possible blasting and tunnelling) are of a geotechnical nature, and require attention by design consultants during the detailed design to minimise  any potential damage to the historic structure of Signal Hill.

4.9.5        Mitigation Measures

Recommendations for Mitigation:  The levels of impact which result from the various planned works have been considered in terms of the assigned levels of archaeological potential. After consultation with the AMO, recommendations have been made for mitigation of these impacts. The mitigation required could include field evaluation of areas of Signal Hill which might be affected by the works and a watching brief to be carried out during the excavation and construction phase of the engineering works.

Attempt has been made to use the conclusions derived from the analysis of this archaeology and cultural heritage assessment as a basis for further debate and discussion among the relevant authorities concerning the future use of the sites in question.  The proposed mitigation measures are meant to protect the affected sites of cultural heritage and to enhance their meaning for the general public.

4.10          Landscape and Visual Issues

4.10.1     Landscape Impact Assessment

The assessment of the potential impacts of a proposed scheme on the existing landscape comprises two distinct sections :

i.         baseline survey; and

ii.        potential landscape impacts assessment.

A baseline survey of the existing landscape character and quality has been undertaken from site inspections and desktop surveys.  Landscape elements considered include :

·          local topography;

·          woodland extent and type;

·          other vegetation types;

·          built form;

·          patterns of settlement;

·          land use, including open space;

·          details of local materials, styles, streetscapes, etc.;

·          prominent watercourses; and

·          cultural and religious identity.

Confirmed developments either within the Study Area or adjacent to it are also considered.  The baseline survey will form the basis of the landscape context by describing broadly homogenous units of similar character.  The landscape character is rated into low, medium or high depending not only on the quality of elements present but also their sensitivity to change and local or regional importance.  The quality of the landscape is not only related to its visual amenity.

The assessment of the potential landscape impacts of the proposals will result from

i.         identification of the sources of impact, and their magnitude, that would be generated during construction and operation of the scheme; and

ii.        identification of the principal landscape impacts, primarily in consideration of the degree of change to the baseline conditions.  The impacts are considered systematically in terms of the landscape elements, the site and its context.

The overall landscape impact is a product of the following factors :

·          the landscape character and its quality;

·          source, nature and magnitude of potential impacts;

·          the degree of change caused by each of the impacts to the existing landscape;

·          tolerance of the landscape to absorb the change;

·          significance of this change in consideration of the local and regional areas and other developments;

·          cumulative effects on the landscape of this and neighbouring proposals; and

·          identification of plant species of significant value which should be conserved.

The degree of impact is defined in Table 4.10.1 as follows:

Table 4.10.1    Landscape Impact Assessment Definition

Negative / Beneficial Impacts

Significant:

Moderate:

Slight:

Negligible:

adverse/beneficial impact where the proposal would cause significant deterioration or improvement in existing landscape quality

adverse/beneficial impact where the proposal would cause a noticeable deterioration or improvement  in existing landscape quality

adverse/beneficial impact where the proposal would cause a barely perceptible deterioration or improvement in the existing landscape quality

no discernible change in the existing landscape quality

 

The analysis of the degree of impact is based on the following matrix, Table 4.10.2:

Table 4.10.2    Landscape Impact Assessment Matrix

 

High

Moderate Impact

Moderate / Significant Impact

Significant Impact

MAGNITUDE OF CHANGE

Medium

Slight / Moderate Impact

Moderate Impact

Moderate / Significant Impact

 

Low

Slight Impact

Slight / Moderate Impact

Moderate Impact

 

 

Low

Medium

High

 

 

SENSITIVITY / QUALITY

 

The above matrix will apply in the assessment of the majority of situations, however, in certain cases a deviation form this may occur, e.g. the impact may be so major that a significant impact may occur to a low quality element.

4.10.2     Visual Impact Assessment

The assessment of the potential visual impact of the scheme comprises two distinct parts :

i.         baseline survey; and

ii.       visual impact assessment.

The baseline survey of all views towards the proposals is undertaken by identifying:

·          the visual envelope or visual zone within which the proposed development may be contained either wholly or partially within views.  This must also include indirect effects such as off-site construction activities; and

·          the visually sensitive receivers (VSRs) within the visual envelope whose views will be affected by the scheme. 

The potential receivers are considered as three groups:

i.         views from residences - the most sensitive of receivers due to the high potential of intrusion on the visual amenity and quality of life,

ii.       view from workplaces - less sensitive than above due to visual amenity being less important within the work environment; and

iii.      views from public areas - including all areas apart from the above, e.g., public parks, recreation grounds, footpaths, roads, harbour, etc. Sensitivity of this group depends on the transitory nature of the receiver, e.g. sitting in a park or travelling on a highway.  Also considered is the degree of view or glimpsed views.

The sensitivity of each group is also influenced by its location and direction of view relative to the scheme. Typical viewpoints from within each of the visually sensitive groups are identified and their views described. Both present and future visually sensitive receivers will be considered.

The baseline survey will form the basis of the visual character and quality of the site.  The assessment of the potential visual impacts will result from:

i.         identification of the sources of visual impacts, and their magnitude, that would be generated during construction and operation of the scheme; and,

ii.       identification of the principal visual impacts primarily in consideration of the degree of change to the baseline conditions.

The impact assessment will relate to the typical viewpoints within the visual receiver group, as identified previously, and their existing and potential views subsequent to the scheme development.  The visual impact will result from consideration of the following:

·          character of existing view;

·          quality of existing view;

·          context and location of the visually sensitive receiver;

·          visual receiver group sensitivity;

·          degree of change to existing views;

·          other views available to visual receiver group; and

·          the cumulative effects on views of this and other neighbouring developments.

The degree of visual impact is rated in a similar fashion to the landscape impact, i.e. significant, moderate, slight and negligible.  The impacts may be beneficial or adverse.

4.10.3     Mitigation Measures

The identification of the landscape and visual impacts will highlight those sources of conflict requiring design solutions or modifications to reduce the impacts, and, if possible, blend the development and associated activities in with the surrounding landscape.  These mitigation measures should take into account factors including :

·          woodland, tree and shrub planting of new or disturbed slopes, amenity strips and areas, central reservations and adjacent to any new structures;

·          consideration of the contouring of new slopes in order to blend them in with the existing topography;

·          earth mounding and screening, structural or vegetated;

·          highlighting unacceptable impacts and considering alternative scheme proposals;

·          treatment of structural forms;

·          hard landscape, furniture and other landscape; and

·          significant landscape elements.

This will result in the formation of landscape mitigation proposals, which will alleviate the previously identified landscape and visual impacts as far as possible.

4.10.4     Residual Impact

The Residual Impacts are those that remain after the proposed mitigation measures have been implemented.  This is often 10 to 15 years after the proposed scheme has been open to normal operation when the soft landscape mitigation measures are deemed to have reached a level of maturity which allows them to perform their original design objectives.

The level of impact is derived from the degree or magnitude of change that the proposals would cause to the view that would have existed during this period if the proposed scheme had not been constructed.  This concerns the quality of the landscape and its sensitivity or ability to tolerate change, and takes into account the beneficial effects of the proposed mitigation.  The degree of impact is derived from the following matrix:

The degree of impact is considered as follows:

Table 4.10.3    Degree of Residual Impact

High

Acceptable with mitigation

Unacceptable /  acceptable with mitigation

Unacceptable

Medium

Acceptable / acceptable with mitigation

Acceptable with mitigation

Unacceptable /  acceptable with mitigation

Low

Acceptable

Acceptable / acceptable with mitigation

Acceptable with mitigation

None

Low

Medium

High

Sensitivity

Quality of View or Landscape Character that would have existed

The acceptability of the residual impact is considered as follows:

Table 4.10.4    Acceptability of Residual Impact

Residual Impacts

Beneficial

The project will complement the landscape and visual character of its setting, will follow the relevant planning objectives and will improve overall and visual quality.

 

Acceptable

There will be no significant effects on the landscape, on significant visual effects caused by the appearance of the project, or no  interference with key views.

 

Acceptable with mitigation

There will be  some adverse effects, but these can be eliminated, reduced or offset to a large extent by specific measures.

 

Unacceptable

The adverse affects are considered too excessive and  would not be reduced to an acceptable level by mitigation.

 

Undetermined

Significant adverse effects are likely but the extent to which they may occur or may be mitigated cannot be determined from the study.  Further detailed study will be required for the specific effects in question.

 

 


5.                  Noise Assessment

5.1              Noise Sensitive Receivers and Baseline Condition

Noise Sensitive Receivers (NSRs) have been identified in accordance with the TMEIA requirement.  The existing landuse along the proposed railway alignment and the Salisbury Road Underpass mainly comprises hotels and commercial buildings.  These premises  are air-conditioned and do not rely on openable windows for ventilation. A staff quarters for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University is near the Hung Hom Station.  

In the vicinity of the pedestrian interchange subway, a number of residential buildings have been identified along Mody Road and Blenheim Avenue.  Some of those along Mody Road will be demolished for redevelopment by the Land Development Corporation.

Construction Phase

Within the Study Area, there will be eight separate worksites.  The worksite locations are shown in Figure 5.1.  Some temporary worksites allocated for site office and material storage uses will be located in Hung Hom Bay, Yau Ma Tei and Ho Man Tin areas. Construction activities are not expected at these temporary worksites. The temporary worksite at Hung Hom Bay is adjacent to the Harbour, and disposal of spoil from the site by barging is anticipated.  Operational noise impact from this temporary site is not expected as the NSRs at Hung Hom South Road will be more than 500m away.

The identified construction phase NSRs are listed in Table 5.1 and shown in Figure 5.1. 

A traction substation will be constructed at Ho Man Tin.  The construction will not involve any substantial civil works, therefore construction noise impact is not expected.

The eight worksites which have been considered for the noise assessment are :

i.         advanced works at Mody Lane and Mody Road  (Worksite 1);

ii.       reprovisioning work at Hung Hom Station (Worksite 2);

iii.      provision of new access to the International Mail Centre (IMC) (Worksite 3);

iv.     tunnel construction along Salisbury Road (Worksite 4);

v.       station work east of Chatham Road (Worksite 5);

vi.     station work west of Chatham Road (Worksite 5A);

vii.    station entrances at Middle Road (Worksite 6);

viii.  construction of an underground pedestrian link between Mody Road and Tsim Sha Tsui MTR Station (Worksite 7).

Table 5.1         Noise Sensitive Receivers - Construction Phase

Noise Sensitive Receivers

Relevant Worksites

Shortest distance from notional point(1) of worksite (m)

N1

Pak Sui Yuen

2

94

N2

No. 5-7 Chatham Road

5

47

N3

Star Mansion

5A

90

N4

Far East Mansion

5A

102

 

 

6 / 6S

11

N5

Minden Apartment

7 / 7B

53

N6

Minden House

7 / 7N

5

N7*

No. 30 Mody Road

7 / 7E

5

N8*

No. 18 Mody Road

7 / 7D

7

N9

Peninsula Apartment

7 / 7C

6

N10

Mirador Mansion

7 / 7A

6

N13

Ocean View Court - Western facade

7 / 7G

6

N14

Ocean View Court - Eastern facade

7 / 7H

6

N16

Lyton Building

7 / 7M

5

Note:       (1) Definition of a notional point is in accordance with TM1

                *N7 & N8  would be subject to similar noise exposure.

                †N6 & N16 would be subject to similar noise exposure.

 

Operational Phase

Airborne and groundborne noise impacts would be a potential concern.  Possible sources of airborne noise arising from the East Rail Extension are:

i.         fixed electrical and mechanical plant (including ventilation systems) which are in the vicinity of the passenger station, traction substation and ventilation buildings; and

ii.       train operations.

Train noise within the tunnel would propagate along the tunnel alignment and escape from the tunnel portal at Hung Hom.  Any NSRs located adjacent to the tunnel portal could be impacted by the noise. 

The NSRs likely to be affected by the airborne noise are listed in Table 5.2 (also see Figures 5.1, 5.3 & 5.4).  Locations of vent shafts are shown in Figure 5.2.

Table 5.2         Noise Sensitive Receivers - Operational Phase

Noise Sources

Nearest NSR

Shortest Distance  (m)

Vent Shaft 1

Mirador Mansion (N10)

6

Vent Shaft 5

No. 5-7 Chatham Road (N2)

60

Vent Shaft 8

No. 5-7 Chatham Road (N2)

53

Vent Shaft 6

Pak Sui Yuen (N1)

115

Vent Shaft 7

Ocean Views Court (N13)

6

Traction Substation

Shun Man House (N17)

155

Train Noise

Pak Sui Yuen (N1)

112

Note:       There will be no immediate neighbouring NSRs for vent shafts 2, 3 and 4. Adjacent buildings will be the Mariner’s Club (33m and 19m away from Vent Shafts 2 and 3), and the Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel (20m away from Vent Shaft 4).  These existing buildings are provided with air conditioning.

 

The airborne noise levels from fixed plant and train operations were predicted at the NSRs, according to the shortest separation distance between the noise source and the NSR.

Groundborne noise is due to vibration generated from underground railway operations.  The vibration propagation path starts from the railway track, then through the tunnel structure, to the surrounding soil, and into the structure of any buildings close to the tunnel.  The groundborne noise usually manifests itself as a rumble.  It depends on the resultant groundborne vibration levels at the NSRs. The groundborne noise sensitive receivers are listed in Table 5.3.

Table 5.3         Groundborne Noise Sensitive Receivers - Operational Phase

Noise Sensitive Receivers

Approximate shortest offset distance from the underground structure wall of the alignment (m)

VSR 1

Shangri-La Hotel

17

VSR 2

Wing On Plaza

2

VSR 3

Mariner’s Club

12

VSR 4

New World Hotel

36

VSR 5

Sheraton Hong Kong Hotel

4

 

5.2              Construction Phase

5.2.1        Potential Sources of Impact

The extensive use of PME for various construction activities will be the major source of construction noise impact.  Eight major worksites have been defined above. 

Cut and cover method will be employed for constructing the underground facilities including the underground railway tunnels, pedestrian interchange subway, station entrances and the ETS.  Figure 2.12 shows the construction sequence for the pedestrian interchange subway, it would also be similar for other facilities constructed by the cut and cover method.  Rock excavation by blasting will be required for the station construction and a bored tunnel section of the pedestrian interchange subway underneath Signal Hill.  Detailed activities are as follows :

i.         use of excavator mounted hydraulic breakers for site preparation and general breaking activities;

ii.       preparatory drilling for chemical grouting where hard ground or obstructions are encountered;

iii.      installation of diaphragm walling panels/or pipe piles;

iv.     use of excavators to remove spoil generated from underground works;

v.       use of bored and sheet piles to enable road decking and for temporary trench support;

vi.     use of rock drills at ETS Station for slope treatment works and blastholes;

vii.    use of a large number of construction plant for general station and tunnel construction work; and

viii.   reinstatement of roads.

Below is a brief description of works to be undertaken at each worksite. A construction plant inventory has been estimated according to KCRC’s preferred approach to the construction.  This assumes the necessary quantity of plant to carry out the construction work in an efficient and effective manner in order to meet the master programme for implementing the railway project.  Appendix D2 gives details of this plant inventory specific to each worksite and the estimated activity sound power levels. 

As initial predictions and analyses of the construction noise impacts, revealed that construction activities for the pedestrian interchange subways would give rise to adverse daytime noise impacts.  To deal with this adverse situation KCRC will place stringent limits on the noisy activities which would be carried out in close proximity to the NSRs.  This will be achieved by dividing the worksites into smaller sections and writing contract specifications to prevent the noisiest operations being carried out in adjacent areas at the same time, as well as limiting the duration of these activities in any area to not more than 13 weeks.  All plant used will be the quietest available for the intended purpose, electrically driven wherever practicable.  Temporary and permanent pile walls will be installed using electrically driven “down-the-hole” drills; mains electricity supplies will be used to eliminate the use of generators; centralized electrically powered compressed air facilities, with appropriate containment to reduce noise levels, will be used in place of mobile compressors. Centralised concrete pumping facilities will also be used where possible.  More details are given in Section 5.2.3.

A bored tunnel option has also been reviewed (details are given in Appendix D9).  However, it involves more complicated construction, would be inconvenient for users and offers only limited overall environmental benefits (with some NSR locations better and some much worse) in terms of noise impact duration compared to the proposed cut and cover construction.

Worksite 1 - Advanced Works at Mody Lane and Mody Road:  Utilities such as gas mains, foul sewers and drainage culverts will be diverted from their present location along Salisbury Road to Mody Road.  Construction activities involved are site preparation, trench support, excavation and reinstatement.

Worksite 2 - Reprovisioning Works for Hung Hom Station:  Existing platforms, services and structures will be reprovisioned to allow for the proposed extension.  The works will involve site preparation, regrading or formation, station construction, concreting and demolition.

Worksite 3 - New Access to the IMC above Harbour:  Access to the IMC will be reprovisioned along the south side of the structure by constructing a three lane bridge. Other operational arrangements and small scale demolition works within the IMC will also be required. In addition, some minor road regrading works along the Cross Harbour Tunnel Approach Road will be undertaken.  This involves demolition, marine piling, RC beam installation, deck construction, and road regrading.

Worksite 4 - Tunnel Construction Along Salisbury Road:  This section will be constructed using cut and cover methods. Construction activities will be site preparation, excavation, tunnel box construction, and concreting.

Worksite 5 - Tsim Sha Tsui East Station (East):  The method of diaphragm walling within the soft ground east of Chatham Road will be used as a temporary trench support and cofferdam to prevent water ingress. The station box will subsequently be constructed inside the diaphragm walls. The construction activities will involve chemical grouting, site preparation, sheet piling, diaphragm walling, road decking, surface excavation, station construction, tunnel box construction, backfilling, and road reinstatement.

Worksite 5A - Tsim Sha Tsui East Station (West): Hard rock conditions necessitate the use of drill and blast excavation for station construction west of Chatham Road. Site preparation for the slope cutting, excavation by blasting, station construction, concreting, and backfilling will be undertaken.  The blasting will only be undertaken during daytime, and the frequency of the blasting is unlikely to be more than once a day.

Worksite 6 - Middle Road Station Entrances: Cut and Cover techniques will be used for construction of the entrances with micro-tunnelling for short sections under sensitive utility services and over the existing MTR tunnels under Nathan Road.  Pipe piles will be used to provide foundations for road decking.  Subsequent subway box construction and concreting works will be undertaken beneath the temporary road deck using top-down construction methods.  Chemical grouting, site preparation, road decking, surface excavation, subway box construction, backfilling and road reinstatement will be carried out.

Worksite 7 - Works on a Pedestrian Link from Mody Road to MTRC Station:  A bored tunnel will be constructed in the section under Signal Hill and cut and cover tunnelling in the section from Blenheim Avenue to Mody Road.

The major construction activities of the pedestrian subway construction have been grouped under three headings as follows:

1.      Piles & Deck - site preparation, pipe piling and road decking;

2.      Construction - excavation and tunnel box construction; and

3.      Reinstatement - backfilling and road reinstatement.

The tunnel box construction will be undertaken beneath the temporary road deck.

5.2.2        Impacts Prediction and Evaluation

Predictions and analyses of the construction noise impacts were by means of  spreadsheets.  Facade noise levels at the NSRs were calculated based on the SWLs and corrections for distance attenuation given in TM1.

The predicted noise levels without mitigation are given in Table 5.4. Sample calculations are shown in Appendix D3.  The predictions reveal that without mitigation there would be exceedances above the criteria at the majority of the NSRs.  The assessment criteria are given in Table 3.2.1b.

It is expected that the construction of the pedestrian interchange subway and the Middle Road Station Entrances will give rise to adverse daytime noise impacts, and substantial mitigation measures will be necessary in order to fully ameliorate the impacts.  A further description of the extent and the causes of the exceedances is given below.


Table 5.4........ Predicted Construction Noise Levels without Mitigation

NSRs

N1

N2

N3

N4

N4

N5

N6

N7

N8

N9

N10

N13

N14

Work Site

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Activity

2

5

5A

5A

6

7

7

7

7

7

7

7

7

Site Preparation

81

78

71

82

90

80

100

84

97

99

98

99

99

Regrading/Formation

71

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Demolition

71

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Excavation (Drill & Blast)

-

-

78

89

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Station Construction

73

79

73

84

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Grouting

-

80

-

-

92

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Concreting

78

-

69

80

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Sheet Piling - Oscillating

-

77

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Bored Piling

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Excavation

-

-

-

-

-

81

101

85

98

100

99

100

100

-Concreting

-

-

-

-

-

82

102

86

99

101

100

101

101

Diaphragm Walling

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Walling

-

78

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

- Concreting

-

74

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

- Breaking

-

84

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Road Decking

-

78

-

-

90

80

100

84

97

99

98

99

99

Excavation (at surface)

-

84

-

-

90

77

97

81

94

96

95

96

96

Tunnel/Subway Box Construction

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Formation

-

76

-

-

88

78

98

82

95

97

96

97

97

- Concreting

-

77

-

-

87

78

98

82

95

97

96

97

97

Backfilling

-

80

61

72

90

77

97

81

94

96

95

96

96

Road Reinstatement

-

79

-

-

91

78

98

82

95

97

96

97

97

Notes:      - Means no such activity. 
Bold indicates predicted noise level exceeds the noise criterion of 75dB(A).

 


Alignment Construction

The alignment construction at Worksite 2 without mitigation would result in exceedances of 3 to 6dB(A) at N1.  The noise impacts are due to site preparation and concreting.

ETS Construction

The ETS construction at Worksite 5A without mitigation would result in 3dB(A) exceedances at N3 due to the excavation activity (drill and blast).  The Mariner’s Club would provide effective protection to N3 against the noise from the ETS construction. There would be 7 - 14dB(A) exceedances at N4 due to the ETS construction at Worksite 5A.

For the ETS construction at Worksite 5 which is adjacent to the Salisbury Road Underpass, there would be 1-9dB(A) exceedances at the eastern facade of N2, due to a range of activities for site preparation, station construction, grouting, sheet piling, etc.

Pedestrian Interchange Subway and Middle Road Station Entrances Construction

Due to the proximity of NSRs to the pedestrian interchange subway construction along Mody Road (Worksite 7), the un-mitigated construction activities would lead to exceedances of 2 - 7dB(A) at N5, 22 - 27dB(A) at N6, 19 - 24dB(A) at N8, 21 - 26dB(A) at N9, N13 and N14 and 20 -25dB(A) at N10.

The construction of the Middle Road Station Entrances without noise mitigation would result in exceedances of 11 - 17dB(A) at N4 as a result of close proximity distance for the site and the NSR.

5.2.3        Review of Possible Mitigation Options

Possible mitigation options are discussed in Appendix D9 in terms of their typical noise attenuation effectiveness and applicability for this project.  Identified constraints or limitations of use for specific measures as well as the ease of implementation in actual practice are addressed.  Some are the outcome of consultation with government departments (i.e. EPD and FSD), KCRC and the detailed design consultants.  The options reviewed have been categorised into the following hierarchy according to the approach of noise control :

·          At Source (S) - Reduction of Plant Number, Use of Quiet Plant, Alternative Construction Methods, Reduction of Plant Operating Time.

·          Along Propagation Path (P) - Portable Noise Barriers, Fixed or Movable Enclosures, Acoustic Shrouds, Full Decking.

·          At Receiver (R) - Indirect Technical Remedies by means of Improved Window Glazing and Air-conditioning.

·          Management (M) - Contractual Control, e.g. Use of Specialized Equipment, Particular Contract Specification in Terms of Environmental Noise Limits. 

It is anticipated that by reducing the plant quantity, using quiet plant, and using portable noise barriers, it would be sufficient to mitigate the noise impacts of the railway alignment construction.  This is verified in the options evaluation in Section 5.2.4.  A typical example of a portable noise barrier is provided in Figure 5.5. The actual design and construction can be determined by the Contractor.  It is recommended that such a barrier should be constructed of panels or materials with a superficial density of at least 20 kg/m2.  Its maximum practical height should be no more than 3 m above ground, to ensure compliance with wind loading, structural stability and safety issues when in use.

However, the above measures will not be adequate for mitigating the impacts of the pedestrian interchange subway and the Middle Road Station Entrances construction, which are over 10dB(A) for most cases and substantial measures will be required.  Although a full enclosure is normally an appropriate solution for mitigating such severe exceedances, there will be practical difficulties for its use. The key constraints upon its practicality are illustrated in Figure 5.6 with details given in Appendix D9.  These include that the enclosure would be very close to windows of the lower floor residential units, imposing nuisance and a safety risk to these residents in the event of fire or accident.  A full enclosure would limit the access of fire engines and the use of fire fighting water hoses as there would be insufficient room outside of the enclosure.  The use of the enclosure will also constrain the construction works and prolong the construction period. 

As stated earlier a bored tunnel option has also been reviewed with details given in Appendix D9.  It is not considered to be practical or appropriate.

The EIA identified that a conventional mitigation approach will be unable to achieve the required noise reductions, therefore, a number of specific measures will be implemented by KCRC, which are summarized below with details being further described in Appendix D9 : 

·          more refined phasing and sequencing of construction activities;

·          use of electrically driven plant whenever practicable;

·          eliminate mobile generators through the use of temporary mains supply;

·          use of containers to accommodate concrete pumping equipment;

·          use of alternative construction plant which is quieter;

·          use of shrouds to mitigate noise wherever possible; and

·          fully decking of the worksite during excavation and subway box construction.

5.2.4        Mitigation Options Evaluation

Prediction details for different combinations of noise mitigation measures being incorporated are given in Appendix D9.

Alignment Construction

Table 5.5a demonstrates that by reducing the plant quantity, using quiet plant, and using portable noise barriers, the noise impact of the railway alignment construction (refers to N1 for Worksite 2) would be fully mitigated.

ETS Construction

Table 5.5a also demonstrates that with the above measures, the noise impact of ETS construction (refers to Worksites 5/5A) would be fully mitigated at N3, but there would be 2 - 4dB(A) residual exceedances at N2 due to grouting, sheet piling and road reinstatement of Worksite 5; and 6 - 9dB(A) residual exceedances at N4 due to site preparation, excavation (drill & blast) and station construction of Worksite 5A.

Pedestrian Interchange Subway and Middle Road Station Entrances Construction

Table 5.5b shows that with the KCRC specific measures, the residual exceedances of the pedestrian interchange subway construction (Worksite 7) along Mody Road would be within 10dB(A) except for N6 and N16 where there could be 11dB(A) residual exceedances.  For the construction activities to be undertaken in Middle Road (Worksite 6),  the residual exceedances would be within 5dB(A). 

It should be noted that the specific measures would further reduce the maximum residual exceedances by 10dB(A) when compared with the combined measures of reduced plant quantity, quiet plant, and the use of portable noise barriers. (see Appendix D9 for details).

It is anticipated that the above residual impacts will be unable to be mitigated adequately for achieving the TMEIA requirements, therefore, KCRC have confirmed that indirect technical remedies (ITR) will be utilised as the last resort to mitigate the residual noise impacts.  The ITR is the provision of suitable window glazing and air conditioning to the affected NSRs during the construction period.  It will be put in place before the construction phase of the works which cause the residual exceedances. 

The ITR implementation is expected to involve the following tasks :

·          devise the ITR reimbursement scheme;

·          set criteria for identifying households which are qualified for the ITR

·          identify households which are qualified for the ITR;

·          advise the qualified households of the ITR scheme;

·          assess the existing insulation conditions of the qualified households by Quantity /Building Surveyors;

·          confirm to the qualified households the reimbursement to which they are entitled; and

·          recommend a list of KCRC approved Contractors to the qualified households for undertaking the ITR work.

Table 5.5a       Residual Noise Exceedances and Duration with Reduced Plant Quantity, Use of Quiet Plant and Portable Noise Barriers (Worksites 2, 5 & 5A)

NSRs

N1

N2

N3

N4

Work Site

 

 

 

 

Activity

2

5

5A

5A

Site Preparation

-

-

-

6 (5.6)

Excavation (Drill and Blast)

N/A

N/A

N/A

8 (14)

Station Construction

-

-

-

9 (11)

Grouting

N/A

4 (28)

N/A

N/A

Concreting

-

N/A

-

-

Sheet Piling - Oscillating

N/A

2 (28)

N/A

N/A

Diaphragm Walling

N/A

-

N/A

N/A

Road Decking

N/A

-

N/A

N/A

Excavation (at surface)

N/A

-

N/A

N/A

Subway/Tunnel Box Construction

N/A

-

N/A

N/A

Backfilling

N/A

-

-

N/A

Road Reinstatement

N/A

3 (28)

N/A

N/A

Notes:      N/A:  Not applicable
(  ) exceedance duration in months - NB The durations for N2 are not cumulative
- indicates no exceedances above the 75dB(A) noise criterion

 

Table 5.5b       Residual Noise Exceedances and Duration with KCRC Specific Measures (Worksites 6 & 7)

NSRs

N4

N6/N16

N7/N8

Work Site

6S

7N/7M

7E/7D

Activity

dB(A)

Months

dB(A)

Months

dB(A)

Months

Pipe & Deck (a)

4

3.2

11

2.8

8

3.0

Construction (b)

1

6.7

8

4.9

4

5.4

Reinstatement (c)

4

3.7

11

2.3

8

2.8

Notes:      (a) includes site preparation, pipe pile wall and road decking at different times. 
(b) includes excavation, shoring and subway construction at different times.
(c) includes back filling and road reinstatement at different times.
NB The total duration of noise exceedance at NSRs will be equal to the sum of individual duration.


Table 5.5b (Con’t)      Residual Noise Exceedances and Duration with KCRC Specific Measures (Worksites 6 & 7)

NSRs

N9

N10

N13

N14

Work Site

7C

7A

7G

7H


Activity

dB(A)

Months

dB(A)

Months

dB(A)

Months

dB(A)

Months

Pipe & Deck (a)

10

2.6

9

3.2

10

2.8

10

2.6

Construction (b)

7

4.6

6

4.9

7

5.1

7

4.9

Reinstatement (c)

10

2.3

9

2.8

10

2.8

10

2.3

Notes:      (a) includes site preparation, pipe pile wall and road decking at different times. 
(b) includes excavation, shoring and subway construction at different times.
(c) includes back filling and road reinstatement at different times.
NB The total duration of noise exceedance at NSRs will be equal to the sum of individual duration.

 

Details of the reimbursement methods is subject to a further study under a separate KCRC contract.  For identifying a household which is qualified for the ITR, the following criteria are proposed :

·          the household is expected to be subject to a residual noise exceedance of 5dB(A) or above; and

·          the duration of the residual noise impact at the building facade of that household is 1 month or greater.

The estimated number of households which would be qualified for the ITR according to the above criteria is 381 in terms of flats.  This figure tends to be conservative as it does not preclude existing households which are fitted with air-conditioners.  For details refer to Appendix D4.

5.2.5        Construction Noise Permit

In accordance with EPD’s advice, the Area Sensitive Rating for the NSRs located near Nathan Road (between Mody Road and Salisbury Road) and Mody Road (between Nathan Road and Chatham Road South) should be “B”.  The predicted mitigated noise levels at these NSRs exceed the daytime noise criterion. It is envisaged that EPD would reject the applications for CNPs for evening and night-time works as the noise criteria for these time periods are more stringent than daytime.

5.2.6        Cumulative Impacts

Cumulative impact on N4 is expected due to combined worksite activities.  N4 will be impacted by the Worksites 5A and 6 due to the close distances to the two sites.  The predicted noise level at N4 has subsequently been increased by 3dB(A) as appropriate. 

The assessment of noise impacts from the construction of Salisbury Road Underpass has been undertaken previously and reported in the EIA for Salisbury Road Underpass and Associated Road Improvement Works - Final EIA Report, Maunsell, March 1999. In accordance with the EIA report, there will be no adverse construction noise impacts expected at the buildings close to the site as all nearest buildings are centrally air conditioned and do not rely on openable windows for ventilation. If based on an estimated total sound power level of 122 dB(A) due to the construction of Salisbury Road Underpass, the predicted noise levels of Salisbury Road Underpass construction are in the range of 60 – 67dB(A) at the nearby NSRs N4 and N14.  Compared to the noise levels from the East Rail Extension construction, which are in a range of 76 - 86 dB(A), the impact of the road works would be insignificant.

5.2.7        Recommended Noise Mitigation

The following noise mitigation measures are recommended in four distinct levels. 

Level 1 - Good site practices and noise management techniques

Level 2 - Use of movable noise barriers and site hoarding;
Use of quiet PME and working methods; and
Reduction of number of plant to be used on site where practical

Level 3 - KCRC specific measures

Level 4 - Use of indirect technical remedies.

5.2.7.1     Levels 1 and 2

Both Levels 1 and 2 mitigation are on site measures necessary to avoid uncontrolled noise impacts, and will be implemented for all worksites except Worksites 6 and 7.  Details of good site practice and management are described below.  As their noise reduction benefits can vary according to specific site conditions and operations, they cannot be assumed to guarantee a particular level of noise reduction.

i.         Only well-maintained plant should be operated on-site and plant should be serviced regularly during the construction programme;

ii.       Machines and plant (such as trucks, cranes) that may be in intermittent use should be shut down between work periods or should be throttled down to a minimum;

iii.      Plant known to emit noise strongly in one direction, where possible, be orientated so that the noise is directed away from nearby NSRs;

iv.     Silencers or mufflers on construction equipment should be properly fitted and maintained;

v.       Mobile plant should be sited as far away from NSRs as possible; and

vi.     Material stockpiles and other structures should be effectively utilised, where practicable, to screen noise from on-site construction activities.

5.2.7.2     Level 3

The KCRC specific measures will be implemented for Worksites 6 and 7.  They can be summarized as follows :

i.         more refined phasing and sequencing of construction activities;

ii.       use of electrically driven plant whenever practicable;

iii.      eliminate mobile generators through the use of temporary mains supply;

iv.     use of containers to accommodate concrete pumping equipment;

v.       use of alternative construction plant which is quieter;

vi.     use of shrouds to mitigate noise wherever possible;

vii.    full decking of the worksite during excavation and subway box construction.

5.2.7.3     Level 4

The extent of ITR will be subject to a further site investigation under a separate KCRC contract.  The ITR will be put in place prior to the commencement of the works which cause residual exceedances (see Implementation Schedule for details).  The current estimation of the ITR requirements is summarized in Table 5.6 below, it is subject to verification through the detailed design process. References can be drawn from the TMEIA and the HKPSG for details regarding different insulation categories.

Table 5.6         Recommended Glazing Upgrading Requirements

Noise Sensitive Receivers

Street adjacent to the Facades of the Building which Require ITR

Recommended ITR Glazing Type† *

Estimated Number of Flats Requiring ITR

N4

Far East Mansion

Middle Road

I

51

N6

Minden House

Minden & Blenheim Avenues

II

8

N7

No.30 Mody Road

Mody Road

I

6

N8

No. 18 Mody Road

Mody Road

I

6

N9

Peninsula Apartment

Mody Road

II

54

N10

Mirador Mansion

Mody Road

I

52

N13

Ocean View Court - Western facade

Mody Road

II

80

N14

Ocean View Court - Eastern facade

Mody & Chatham Roads

II

80

N16

Lyton Building

Mody & Chatham Road

II

44

Estimated Total No. of Flats Requiring ITR

381

†Type I - openable well-gasketted window, 6mm pane, or transmission loss (TL) of 28dB or above in 250Hz octave-band and sound transmission class (STC) 31 or above.

Type II - openable well-gasketted window, 8mm pane, or TL of 32dB or above in 250Hz octave-band and STC 34 or above.

* Glazing type for the worst affected flat and it is subject to further verification under a separate KCRC Contract .

5.2.8        Construction Noise Monitoring

It is recommended that the construction noise should be monitored during the entire construction period.  This ensures that the construction noise fully complies with the TMEIA requirements.  The recommended monitoring schedule in terms of monitoring stations, frequency of both baseline and impact noise monitoring, methodology, etc. are provided in the EM&A Manual (Appendix I).  The recommended noise monitoring stations are chosen from the impact prediction points of the EIA.  They are subject to further review by the Independent Environmental Checker, EPD and the Contractor’s environmental team, depending on their accessibility, availability and so on.

5.3              Operational Phase

5.3.1        Fixed Plant Noise

Noise generation from fixed plant associated with an underground railway is principally associated with tunnel ventilation. The technical scope of this study is to determine, through the use of standard acoustic principles, a maximum at-source noise level specification to ensure acceptability in the receiving environment. The specifications will be used by the system designers to provide adequate mitigation within the systems.

Several tunnel ventilation shafts shall be required along the TST Extension. Eight  sets of ventilation shafts have been identified and considered in this assessment. These are located at Mody Road, Hanoi Road, Middle Road Children’s Playground, Wing On Plaza Garden and close to the Hong Kong Coliseum (Figure 5.2). There will also be a traction substation at Ho Man Tin located to the north of the interchange between Chatham Road North and Princess Margaret Road (Figure 5.3 ).

Prediction of Impacts

The noise specifications for each potential source of fixed plant noise have been determined by considering the maximum permissible sound power levels (SWL) to achieve compliance with the relevant noise criteria at the nearest NSR. In the predictions, assuming no intermittent or tonal sources, corrections have been included for separation distance and facade reflection.

Table 5.7 presents the maximum permissible SWLs for each of the East Rail Extension fixed plant noise sources required to ensure compliance with Annex 5 of the TMEIA.


Table 5.7         Maximum Permissible Sound Power Levels of TST Fixed Plant

Fixed Plant

Nearest NSR

Shortest Distance (m)

ASR[1]

ANL-5 Leq(30min) dB(A)

Permissible SWL dB(A)

Vent Shaft 1

Mirador Mansion

6

B

50

71

Vent Shaft 5

No. 5-7 Chatham Road

67

B

50

86

Vent Shaft 8

No. 5-7 Chatham Road

53

B

50

84

Vent Shaft 6

Pak Sui Yuen

115

C

55

101

Vent Shaft 7

Ocean View Court

6

B

50

71

Traction Substation

Shun Man House

155

C

55

104

Note: [1] - Cross Harbour Tunnel Approach Road and Princess Margaret Road are considered to be Influencing Factors.  In any event, the ASR assumed here is for indicative assessment only given the preliminary status of plant layout.  It should be noted that fixed noise sources are controlled under section 13 of the NCO.  Nothing in this report shall bind the Noise Control Authority in assessing noise from these sources upon receipt of complaints.  EPD shall assess the noise impacts based on the contemporary conditions/situations.

 

Although the above permissible SWL would ensure the noise achieves the ANL-5 criterion, a general specification of 75dB(A) at 1 m from each vent shaft is recommended, except vent shafts 1 and 7 at Mody Road which require a more stringent limit of 71dB(A).  These minimize the likelihood of noise nuisance in public open areas due to the vent shafts.

Mitigation For Ventilation Shafts and Buildings

Ventilation fan noise, and consequently vent noise is characterised primarily by turbulent air flow and tonal noise.  Turbulent air flow can be minimised by careful consideration of the fan positioning, avoiding areas where turbulence is likely to occur such as close to heaters, coolers or ductwork bends.  Tonal noise can be minimised by optimising the fan speed and pitch of the blades.  Where more than one fan is used, fan speeds should be selected to prevent low frequency noise being generated.

Fan noise can be reduced further by providing an acoustic enclosure and fitting silencers.  Noise emanating from vents can further be reduced by fitting attenuators.

All fans should be maintained in good working condition to prevent any unnecessary noise such as the high frequency whine that can be generated by worn bearings.

Mitigation For Traction Substation

Noise from traction substations can be minimised by providing acoustic enclosures around transformers, particularly the cooling fans, and ensuring that all equipment is maintained in good working condition.

5.3.2        Train Operational Noise

Potential Impacts

The proposed alignment for the East Rail Extension begins southward at the KCR Kowloon (Hung Hom) Station. Heading south-west, the alignment descends from the existing station platform and passes over the Cross Harbour Tunnel, after which it continues to descend along Salisbury Road until it reaches a rail level of approximately -8mPD near the Wing On Centre (at a depth of approximately 13m from the ground surface). No airborne noise will arise from the underground rail alignment. Only a short section of the alignment is above ground near Kowloon (Hung Hom) Station Podium, but the train noise will be screened by the tunnel wall, thus eliminating noise impacts to the nearby NSRs. Assessment has been made for this above ground railway alignment (Figure 5.4 ).

Train System

In accordance with the PER, the headways before 0700 and after 2400 are considered to be roughly 2 - 3 minutes for the East Rail Extension. Therefore, there will be 10 - 15 trains per half-hour for the night-time period.

The NSRs that would be affected by train noise impacts have been identified as the south-eastern facades of Pak Sui Yuen (Figure 5.4 ). The ASR for this NSR should be “C” as the Cross Harbour Tunnel Approach Road is considered as an Influencing Factor. The facade noise levels were predicted at this selected location in order to determine the train noise impacts.

Prediction of Impacts

A spreadsheet was constructed, based on the methodology described in Section 4.4.3, to predict the train noise levels at the identified NSR. Detailed sample calculations are presented in Appendix D1. The predicted night-time noise level (Leq,30min) due to airborne noise at the NSR is 59 dB(A) which has been corrected for facade reflection, and based on a 100 kph train speed for a conservative noise prediction.  It is within the night-time ANL of 60dB(A) in terms of Leq,30min for Area Sensitivity Rating C.

5.3.2.1     Groundborne Noise

The railway alignment will run from Hung Hom Station to East Tsim Sha Tsui Station through a cut-and-cover tunnel box, which will be located beneath the Victoria Harbour side of Salisbury Road.  The tunnel box will be founded on soft fill, sandy silt and alluvium, with the rock head at a depth significantly below that of the tunnel invert.  There will be a double crossover located opposite the Empire Building.  The structure of primary concern from a ground and structure radiated noise standpoint along this track section is the Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel. 

Given the set back distance and geology, groundborne noise and vibration impacts on the Kowloon Shangri-la or any other adjacent structure are not anticipated from the train operations, therefore, no restrictions on trackform are recommended.  The double crossover is located diagonally to the south east of the hotel, but at considerable setback; thus, it is not likely that floating slab track (FST) would be required under this special trackwork. However, given the increase in vibration due to passage of trains over the points and crossings, and the sensitivity of the Kowloon Shangri-la, further consideration of the crossover trackform type should occur during detailed design.

The Sheraton Hotel, the New World Hotel and the Mariners Club may be affected by the track over run.  The Sheraton Hotel will be the closest to the alignment.  As the rock head through this track section will be just below the cut-and cover tunnel box, which will be founded on soft fill, sandy silt and alluvium, there is a potential that groundborne noise levels within the guest rooms of the hotel may exceed the 30dB(A) noise criterion. Therefore, it is recommended that FST be installed through the East Tsim Sha Tsui Station and the track over run in order to protect these properties from the ground borne noise and vibration during train operations.  However, the extent and appropriate design of FST will be undertaken during detailed design.

 


6.                  Air Quality

6.1              Prediction and Evaluation of Impacts

The PER1 revealed that no adverse impacts from dust arising from the construction of the East Rail Extension are anticipated even in the worst case scenario.  Potential cumulative dust impacts arising together with works for Salisbury Road Underpass have been reviewed and assessed in this section.

Excavation, loading and unloading of materials are potential dusty activities at all the worksites.  There will be no haul roads for the worksites adjacent to main access roads (e.g. Salisbury Road, Mody Road), and trucks will be loaded on public road areas resumed for the construction works.  Haul roads are only expected at the station worksites (i.e. worksites 5 and 5A).  Vehicle washing facilities will be provided at the exit points of these station worksites and off site fugitive dust emission from the trucks will be minimal.

Neither a concrete batching plant nor a rock crusher are expected at any of the worksites for this project.

A total of 37 air sensitive receivers (ASRs), namely A1-A15 and A17-A38, have been identified for this assessment and their locations are presented in Figure 6.1.  The Wing On Plaza Garden will be resumed as a worksite for the station east construction and is therefore not included in the list.

The maximum TSP levels due to the construction activities of Salisbury Road Underpass and haul roads in station worksites have been modelled and the results are shown in Tables 6.1 and 6.2.  Unmitigated TSP levels for the construction of East Rail Extension have been predicted in the PER.  With the incorporation of mitigation measures stipulated in the Air Pollution Control (Construction Dust) Regulation (e.g. watering on dusty activities), the TSP levels from construction of East Rail Extension would be reduced by 50%.  The mitigated TSP levels from the East Rail Extension have been estimated and shown in these Tables.  Cumulative TSP levels from the construction activities of Salisbury Road Underpass, haul roads in station worksites are also given in Tables 6.1 and 6.2.

Table 6.3 gives the predicted dust levels at various distances from the blasting site, the dust impacts at the site boundary and all ASRs would comply with the AQOs.  Also the dust impacts near the site boundary should not be a concern as the site is expected to be evacuated shortly before and after the blasting.

Sample output modelling files and the paved road dust emission factor calculation are given in Appendix F.

Table 6.1         Predicted Maximum Ground Level 1-hour TSP Concentrations

Air Sensitive Receivers

Salisbury Road Underpass and Haul Roads (1) (mg/m3)

East Rail Extension (1) (2)
(
mg/m3)

Cumulative Impact of Underpass and the East Rail (1)  (mg/m3)

A1 International Mail Centre

98

133

144

A2 Pak Sui Yeun

101

175

189

A3 Fire Services Headquarters

103

175

191

A4 Chinachem Golden Plaza

102

131

146

A5 Hotel Nikko Hong Kong

105

220

238

A6 South Seas Centre

105

88

105

A7 Grand Standard Harbour  View Hotel

109

177

198

A8 Urban Council Centenary Garden

109

133

155

A9 Regal Meridien Hotel

113

88

114

A10 Empire Centre

116

133

162

A11 Royal Garden Hotel

119

88

120

A12 Tsim Sha Tsui Centre

139

177

229

A13 Houston Centre

133

88

133

A14 Shangri-la Hotel

206

179

298

A15 Wing On Plaza

293

137

343

A17 New World Centre

154

176

243

A18 Tokyu

208

176

297

A19 Hermes House

166

187

266

A20 Middle Road Car Park

260

187

359