Lands Department

A storey of woe for our developers

Representatives from a developer introduce a residential property development in Hong Kong. Photo: Reuters

When is a house not a house? It may sound almost philosophical to argue over the meaning of a word but in Hong Kong's crazy property market, billions of dollars depend on it.

Tuesday, 14 May, 2013, 10:00am 2 comments

Ombudsman chides Lands Department for lax attitude to pet columbarium

The Ombudsman has chastised the Lands Department for being lax in cracking down on an illegal pet funeral business. Photo: Reuters

The department did not consider the case "high priority" because there were no fire safety breaches, so it issued only warnings to the company over the years, Alan Lai Nin said.

10 May 2013 - 4:46am

Definition of house at heart of battle between government and developer

Audrey Eu represented the government in court. Photo: Sam Tsang

It's a court battle that's going all around the houses. A developer wants to tear down five houses and build a 26-storey block in their place. But the director of the Lands Department insists that it can build only houses - not multi-storey blocks - on the subdivided site, according to the government lease.

25 Apr 2013 - 8:59am

Banners have no place on Hong Kong's streets

Anti-Falun Gong banners have been put up in Tsim Sha Tsui, on Nathan Road, Jordan and in Causeway Bay. Photo: SMP

Bernard Chan in his letter ("Banners offend locals and visitors", March 19), asked why we continue to suffer from the visual pollution of hundreds of banners hung at various key points in the city by the Hong Kong Youth Care Association and the Falun Gong.

1 Apr 2013 - 3:00am 7 comments

Anger as government fences off popular Sai Kung beachfront bistro

The Oriental's seating area was blocked by the Lands Department, which said it took action over unauthorised structures. Photo: David Wong

The Oriental Restaurant and Bar at Sai Wan, a coastal enclave that lies just outside the boundaries of the Sai Kung East Country Park, has been a favourite spot for hikers and campers. Owner and customers are furious that the Lands Department has fenced off 80 per cent of its beachfront seating area without any warning.

24 Mar 2013 - 5:40am 4 comments

Paul Chan announces end of land application list system

Secretary for Development Paul Chan Mo-po. Photo: Sam Tsang

Hong Kong’s government will scrap the land application list system – under which developers can trigger land auctions – in order to increase its control over the city’s land supply.

Secretary for Development Paul Chan Mo-po announced on Thursday the land application list system would be cancelled at the start of the 2013-14 financial year in April.

28 Feb 2013 - 8:38pm

Apex Horizon hotel use under scrutiny

The Apex Horizon hotel in Kwai Chung. Photo: SCMP

The Lands Department has threatened to take legal action if it finds buyers of Cheung Kong's controversial hotel project living in the units. The warning came as 95 per cent of the investors in the 360-room Apex Horizon hotel had signed, or arranged to sign, the sales contract yesterday, according to the property giant. The rest have asked for a postponement.

27 Feb 2013 - 4:29am 1 comment

Loophole could spark rush to buy Hong Kong hotel rooms

Property agents and buyers cram into the sales office for Cheung Kong's Apex Horizon hotel in Kwai Chung yesterday. Photo: David Wong

More hotel rooms could go on sale after the development chief admitted there was a legal loophole allowing such transactions. But Secretary for Development Paul Chan Mo-po warned buyers on Tuesday that they risked having their units seized if land lease regulations were violated.

20 Feb 2013 - 5:45am 11 comments

Chaotic New Territories villages a recipe for tragedy, Zimmerman says

Paul Zimmerman

Elliot Watkiss, eight, and his brother Frankie, seven, died in their home in Wing Hing Wai, Yuen Long, in October after a fire broke out while they were asleep. The boys' father Simon Watkiss last week told the Sunday Morning Post that his sons' lives would have been saved if emergency vehicles had had proper access to the family's village home.

27 Jan 2013 - 5:00am

Unwelcome banners in Tsim Sha Tsui

I refer to the report ("Unwrap HK history this Christmas", December 24).

Despite a growing interest in local heritage, I am sure many people in Tsim Sha Tsui were unaware that 11 heritage sites were being opened to the public as part of "Heritage Fiesta 2012", and would have missed the opportunity to visit them.

6 Jan 2013 - 2:51am 4 comments

HK$2b bid wins Tseung Kwan O site for Wheelock

Construction in Tseung Kwan O. Photo: Dickson Lee

Wheelock Properties has won its second site in Tseung Kwan O with a bid of HK$1.97 billion.

14 Dec 2012 - 3:00am

Officials reject call to rezone sites snubbed by developers

Michael Choi Ngai-min

Senior officials yesterday rejected a government housing adviser's call for sites that developers had not bid for to be rezoned for public housing. The development minister said the administration must avoid "taking the wrong medication".

18 Nov 2012 - 5:31am

Developers snub sites on land sales application list

The current land-sales application system is unpopular with developers.

Close to a third of the sites the government is offering to sell to developers have gone unsold for up to five years despite its push to meet rising demand for flats, Lands Department figures show.

17 Nov 2012 - 4:23am

Developer that bought Union Hospital site wanted to build flats

Union Hospital (left) in Sha Tin. Photo: K. Y. Cheng

A plot of government land in Sha Tin that was slated for private hospital development landed in the hands of a group of merchants and bankers in 1982 and control was later transferred to tycoon Li Ka-shing and his affiliates, official documents show.

17 Nov 2012 - 4:23am 3 comments

Tender results boost for Hong Kong property

Tender results boost for Hong Kong property

Residential sites in Tseung Kwan O and Jordan that opened for tender yesterday are expected to be attractive to developers after the better-than-expected land tender result yesterday.

9 Nov 2012 - 4:50am