Comprehensive Feasibility Study for the Revised Scheme of South East Kowloon Development
(ACE-EIA Paper 3/2001)
1. The purposes of this paper are to give Members a brief account of the findings of the Comprehensive Feasibility Study for the Revised Scheme of South East Kowloon Development and to notify Members that a formal submission of the environmental impact assessment findings under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance will be made to the Advisory Council on the Environment sometime around early September 2001.
2. The previous Feasibility Study for South East Kowloon Development (SEKD) was commissioned in September 1995. However, a large number of objections were received on the draft Kai Tak (North) and Kai Tak (South) Outline Zoning Plans (OZPs) since their gazettal under the Town Planning Ordinance on 4 September 1998, largely related to the extent of reclamation. Taking into account the extensive public views and the alternative proposals received, an Outline Concept Plan (OCP) for SEKD was developed in May 1999 in which the total reclamation area has been substantially reduced from 299 ha to 161 ha. Views on the OCP were collected at the public forum and during the hearing of objections to the draft Kai Tak OZPs by the Town Planning Board and the presentation to the Planning, Lands and Works Panel of the Legislative Council in the middle of 1999.
3. The new Comprehensive Feasibility Study for the Revised Scheme of SEKD (CFS) commenced in November 1999. The CFS is divided into two stages. Stage 1 comprises reviewing the OCP and producing a Preliminary Layout Plan (PLP) for public consultation. Stage 2 constitutes more detailed studies and preliminary design.
4. The public consultation exercise on the PLP produced under Stage 1 of the CFS began in May 2000 and ended at the end of July 2000. Apart from the public forum attended by political parties, professional organizations, green groups and interest bodies, presentations have been made to the Planning, Lands and Works Panel of the Legislative Council, the Town Planning Board and the concerned District Councils, etc.
5. The PLP in general has gained wide support from the public. In particular, the further reduction in the total reclamation area from 161 ha in the OCP to some 130 ha and the promotion of environmentally friendly measures (like public transport via railway and smoke-free shuttle system; use of tunnels and depressed roads as far as practicable; pedestrianisation via open space corridors, pedestrian links at podium level and fully pedestrianised streets; implementation of automated refuse collection system and district cooling system; utilisation of solar energy) have received much welcome from the public.
6. All the comments and suggestions received on the PLP in the public consultation exercise have been critically examined in Stage 2 of the CFS. In particular, the most contentious issue raised by the local residents on the location of the proposed refuse transfer station and public filling barging point has been resolved via relocation to the existing Kwun Tong ferry pier region.
Outline Master Development Plan
7. Stage 2 of the CFS is now substantially complete with production of an Outline Master Development Plan (OMDP). The OMDP has been devised after review of the public views on the PLP and incorporation of the latest circumstances and requirements. The broad framework remains largely the same as that for the PLP. A simplified version of the OMDP is attached at Annex.
8. The new development area of SEKD measures 413 ha. When the existing areas of 48 ha in Ma Tau Kok falling within the boundaries of the Kai Tak OZPs are included, the total development area becomes 461 ha.
9. The new development area of SEKD can accommodate a population of about 250 000. The total employment opportunities are around 70 000.
Key Findings of Environmental Impact Assessment
10. The CFS falls within Item 1 in Schedule 3 of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Ordinance and is a major designated project (DP) requiring an EIA report to be approved under the EIA Ordinance.
11. An EIA report has been prepared. The environmental acceptability for the proposed developments has been confirmed. No insurmountable environmental impacts are expected.
12. Measures to mitigate air quality impacts from traffic emissions on open roads and ventilation shafts include setback and higher exhaust height of shafts.
13. Measures to mitigate road traffic noise include combinations of barriers, enclosures and low noise road surfacings. Single aspect building designs are also proposed for some affected blocks facing Prince Edward Road East. Noise from the stadium will be tackled via the installation of a retractable roof and cease of operation after 11 p.m.
14. The changes in hydrodynamics and water quality due to the presence of the SEKD reclamation are insignificant as confirmed by the numerical modeling predictions.
15. Both options involving in-situ treatment of contaminated sediments and ex-situ treatment of sediments are recommended for reclamation of the Kai Tak Approach Channel. Pilot tests will be conducted during the detailed design stage to ascertain which option is more suitable although the first option is preferred.
16. Dredging will be confined to foundations for critical structures such as seawalls and breakwaters. In line with the current policy, use of public fill will be maximized. Over 80% of the fill required will be provided by public fill.
17. Provision of an automated refuse collection system is found to be technically feasible. However, if a wider application of such a system is considered to be implemented within the development area involving different lot owners, there are a number of issues related to management, operation & maintenance, legal and regulatory aspects which will have to be separately investigated in a further study.
18. To respect cultural heritage, the Sung Wong Toi Inscription Rock will be reinstated to its original location near Olympic Avenue. The Fish Tail Rock in the existing Hoi Sham Park will also be preserved with an unobstructed view corridor leading to the future waterfront.
Submission under Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance
19. We shall apply to the Director of Environmental Protection in early June 2001 for approval of the EIA report under the EIA Ordinance. We intend to make a formal submission to the Advisory Council on the Environment on the EIA findings sometime around early September 2001 after the EIA report has been exhibited for public inspection and views solicited. Further detailed EIA for Schedule 2 projects will be completed during the detailed design stage. We are not seeking environmental permits at this stage. Gazettal of Revised Draft Outline Zoning Plans
20. The revised draft Kai Tak OZPs will be prepared by the Planning Department based on the OMDP. In view of the great need for early completion of public housing development on the north apron portion in order to facilitate the redevelopment of older estates in East Kowloon and the request for early reclamation of the Kai Tak Approach Channel, we plan to have the revised draft OZPs gazetted in July 2001. We also intend to seek funds from the Finance Committee in November 2001 for detailed design of infrastructure related to the north apron portion and the reclamation of the Kai Tak Approach Channel. Our target is to have the first phase of supporting infrastructure in the north apron portion completed in 2005 to serve the early population.
Outline Master Development Plan
Kowloon Development Office
Territory Development Department