Developers are interested in participating in the proposed redevelopment of the 43-year-old North Point Estate unveiled by the Housing Department last week. The department hopes to entice private-sector participation. Details of the development have yet to be finalised, including the size of the site. The department plans to demolish the waterfront estate by early 2002 for the redevelopment to begin early the following year. The estate could provide 2.1 hectares of land for building 2,600 homes. If the neighbouring ferry piers and bus terminal were included, the site for development could increase to 6 hectares to house more than 4,500 families. Surveyors estimated the land in the 6-hectare site could be worth $10 billion. Ricky Wong, director of Wharf (Holdings) marketing agent Harriman Realty, said the group was interested in participating in the redevelopment. Swire Properties general manager of development and valuation division Gordon Ongley said his group had yet to make a decision as details of the project remained unknown. Swire has built up a strong property portfolio in North Point and Quarry Bay, consisting mainly of offices. It was a joint developer of the commercial-residential project Island Place, two blocks from North Point Estate. A property company executive said the estate provided a rare waterfront site in the urban area and would attract enthusiastic interest from developers. He said the site should be expanded to include neighbouring piers and the bus terminal to make way for a comprehensive redevelopment which would improve the environment and maximise the area's resources. The project is expected to be a mixed development, with a proportion of the flats built to be retained as public or subsidised housing. Analysts said the large scale of development meant the project would probably proceed in phases and the site may need to be subdivided or offered for separate joint ventures with developers.