Density of Yau Tong Bay development may be halved
Development density at Yau Tong Bay would be halved under a new set of planning controls, including a 120 metre height limit, proposed by the Planning Department.
The new restrictions, submitted in a paper to the Town Planning Board, would force the Henderson Land consortium, which owns more than 80 per cent of the area, to reduce its proposed development scale by a further 10 per cent. The planning board will discuss the new restrictions today.
Situated between Lei Yue Mun and Kai Tak, Yau Tong Bay was to be reclaimed for a mixed development in 2002. Without any height limit, the 22 hectare site allowed 38 residential towers of 28 to 55 storeys. The targeted result was 12,055 flats covering a gross floor area of 909,000 square metres.
The planning board first approved the plan, but reconsidered after the Court of Final Appeal ruled out the possibility of reclaiming Victoria Harbour in 2004.
The consortium then submitted three new options to the planning board last year after the site area was shrunk to 9 hectares without reclamation. The number of towers was reduced to between 12 and 14, each with 26 to 48 storeys.
The gross floor area was also trimmed by about 45 per cent to 498,996 square metres, housing about 5,800 flats.
But the plan was criticised as still too massive by board members, who later asked the Planning Department to impose clear restrictions.
Under the proposal being discussed today, the consortium would have to cut the maximum gross floor area by a further 10 per cent to 447,381 square metres - less than half of the 2002 proposal - with only 5,456 flats. The consortium would be allowed to build up to 18 towers of nine to 31 storeys, but they should appear stepped in height and not be higher than 120 metres.
A 30-metre-wide non-building area should also be kept between towers to facilitate ventilation.
'We prefer fewer but higher towers,' said a consultant commissioned by the consortium, arguing that fewer buildings would minimise the visual impact upon Yau Mei Court and allow more open space for the public.
The consultant was concerned, however, that the usable area of the residential buildings would be further reduced if the 30-metre visual corridor between buildings were requested.
The department said the redevelopment should bring benefits to the local community by phasing out industrial operations, resolving environmental problems such as the stench from the bay, and enhancing the waterfront for public enjoyment.
The consortium would also be required to reserve waterfront areas for a 20-metre-wide promenade.
The 2002 proposal sought to create 12,055 flats
The latest proposal would cut the number of flats to 5,456, a reduction on the original figure of 55%