Housing Society subsidies are being made available for projects aimed at making residential blocks more environmentally friendly. The subsidies will be capped at HK$3,000 per residential unit or 20 per cent of the total project cost. Over the past two years, property owners have been able to apply to the HK$3 billion building management and maintenance fund only to improve the safety and hygiene of private buildings at least 20 years old. 'We will now subsidise roof-greening projects and fund property owners to install environment friendly equipment such as thermal baffles and energy-saving light bulbs [in common areas of private buildings],' said Yu Chun, of the society. 'If they use water-based paint instead of solvent-based paint on external walls, we will also support them.' The scheme has helped fund improvements at 1,633 buildings since it was established in February 2005. Owners' corporations have been set up at about 460 buildings with the society's maximum HK$3,000 subsidy. About 1,000 properties are being repaired under the scheme, while maintenance work has been completed at 52 buildings. Nearly 120 homes for the elderly have been renovated, with subsidies capped at HK$10,000. The society yesterday opened an advisory centre in Yuen Long to serve property owners in the district, where about 200 of the 2,600 private buildings are 20 years old or more.