Hong Kong lawmakers have given the green light for the government to spend an extra HK$17.5 billion on the construction of the city's seventh border crossing to Shenzhen, after 10 hours of debate that spanned three weeks. The money comes on top of HK$16.25 billion approved in July 2012 for the Liantang-Heung Yuen Wai checkpoint in the northeast New Territories. The sum covers site formation and the building of related infrastructure including a patrol road, a pedestrian subway and five cross-boundary bridges. Seventeen months after initial funding was approved, the Development Bureau announced a budget blowout totalling HK$8.7 billion, blaming rising construction costs and poor ground conditions among five reasons. Legco's Finance Committee backed the funding application arising from the blowout by 26 votes to 10, with support from pro-establishment members. It was the third consecutive Friday in which the panel had considered the application. It was on a long list of delayed items remaining on the committee's agenda, amid tension between the government and pan-democrats, some of whom have vowed to filibuster in protest at Beijing's restrictive framework for Hong Kong's chief executive poll in 2017. Pan-democrats criticised the government for tabling the application in the Finance Committee even though the public works subcommittee had earlier voted it down. They argued this was contrary to Legco convention. Members later backed by 27 votes to six a separate application for HK$8.8 billion to build a passenger terminal and other facilities at the border crossing. At yesterday's meeting, four pan-democrats - Dr Kwok Ka-ki of the Civic Party, Raymond Chan Chi-chuen of People Power, Gary Fan Kwok-wai of the NeoDemocrats and "Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung of the League of Social Democrats - tabled 17 motions calling for the government to address various concerns before continuing with the project. They included the project's environmental impact and additional congestion brought about by an influx of mainland tourists. All the motions were voted down and the first funding request was passed two hours into the session. Pro-establishment lawmakers just voted; they did not speak during the debate.