With Hong Kong’s strategic position as one of the core cities in the Guangdong Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) under the 14th Five Year Plan and the Outline Development Plan for the GBA and Lantau’s role as the “Double Gateway” to connect Hong Kong to the world and other cities in GBA, the HKSAR Government (the Government) is committed to developing the Kau Yi Chau Artificial Islands (KYC AIs) in the Central Waters. Furthermore, the Chief Executive’s 2021 Policy Address has designated KYC AIs as part of the expanded Harbour Metropolis for supporting Hong Kong’s status as an international financial centre. The KYC AIs is more than meeting the long-term territorial land shortfall. It can also provide decanting space to enable scaled-up redevelopment for retrofitting the dense urban core.
The KYC AIs will have a total reclaimed area of about 1,000 hectares, which is undergoing comprehensive planning of developing into liveable and sustainable communities with a range of compatible uses and community facilities, ample open space and greening, state-of-the-art infrastructure, and Hong Kong’s first large-scale carbon neutral community. With a forward-looking urban planning approach, the Government is committed to creating a smart, green, resilient and future-ready community. The KYC AIs will house the third Core Business District, generating some 200,000 diversified employment opportunities.
The Civil Engineering and Development Department and the Planning Department of the HKSAR Government jointly commenced a consultant study on Artificial Islands in the Central Waters (the Study) in June 2021. The Study will be completed within 42 months. The study team will conduct technical assessments to demonstrate the engineering feasibility, environmental acceptability and financial viability of the development. The Study will also ascertain the feasibility of a brand new transport corridor linking Northwest New Territories to Hong Kong Island via KYC AIs. The transport corridor, comprising road and rail links, will play a crucial role in relieving the congestion of Tuen Mun Road and Tuen Ma Line, and enhancing the resilience of the entire transport network of Hong Kong.
The Study has been taken forward at full throttle. The preliminary proposal of reclamation extent, outline development plan, alignment of the transport corridor and financing options will be available for public consultation in 2022. The previous target was to commence the reclamation in 2027 with a view to achieving the first population intake by 2034. The Government is now striving to expedite the project by streamlining administrative procedures such that both the reclamation works and land use planning can be carried out concurrently. It is hoped that the reclamation project will commence as early as 2026 and the first population intake can be advanced to 2033.
This article is contributed by the Development Bureau of the HKSAR Government.