Making new-town developments in the northeast and northwest New Territories 'green' will cost about 20 per cent more than conventional town planning, it emerged yesterday. The three areas identified as potential new-town developments were Hung Shui Kiu in northwest New Territories and Kwu Tung north and Fanling north in New Territories northeast, said chief town planner (sub-regional) Li Chi-kwong. The two New Territories regions are currently home to about one million people. According to the planning department, Hung Shui Kiu would be home to another 160,000 people by 2011. Kwu Tung north and Fanling north would house a total of 180,000 more people by the same year. The green-town idea was presented by Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands Gordon Siu Kwing-chue earlier this month. Mr Li said a total of 208.6 hectares of land had been marked for residential developments in northeast and northwest New Territories, half for public housing and the remainder for private development. He said the towns would feature big promenades linking buildings with sunken roads, sufficient green neighbourhoods and environmentally friendly transport such as LPG vehicles or trolley buses. But the green towns would be more costly to plan than conventional towns both in construction and maintenance. 'Higher costs are only to be expected because we've got more bridges, promenades and trees, in order to have a cleaner environment,' Mr Li said. Subject to final drafting, they could be 20 per cent costlier than towns such as Tuen Mun and Tseung Kwan O. Mr Li said the initial response from developers had been positive, and he believed the avant garde concept would easily be accepted by residents. A public consultation forum will be held on Saturday morning with the development plans to be finalised in about five months, he said. Chief Executive of Green Power Man Chi-sum welcomed the green-town concept, but expressed worries about the rapid increase in population and roads in the northern New Territories. 'Planning so many roads will encourage the use of vehicles. 'The Government should build less roads to discourage this,' he said.