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Envisioning the future of urban planning in a post-pandemic era


Looking back on the history, many cities changed their appearance by urban planning after plague to prevent the return of epidemics. One example was the expansion of Hong Kong’s official urban planning standards to incorporate guidelines on air ventilation for the purpose of improving wind penetration through the city fabric after the SARS outbreak in 2003. As a post-coronavirus prediction, three possible transformations in urban planning may take place.

Two ways to fast-track land production (II): Streamlining land administration process and enhancing land premium arbitration scheme


Aiming at accelerating the land production process, the Government encourages property developers to apply for rezoning their agricultural land for residential use. However, the application procedures for lease modification and land premium negotiation process are complicated and time-consuming under current land administration regimes. In this analysis, the Centre provides suggestions to streamline such processes.

Two ways to fast-track land production (I): Resolving conflicting views of land rezoning in local community


Expediting the land production process to increase housing supply is a priority task of the Government. One of the options is to rezone agricultural lands or brownfield sites for residential use. However, conflicting views of local stakeholders over the land use can result in a lengthy process. Some changes can be made by the Town Planning Board to resolve public disputes over land planning at an earlier stage.

Taiwan community housing policy: A lesson for Hong Kong


To improve the living environment of the disadvantaged awaiting for public rental housing, some welfare NGOs and social enterprises in Hong Kong have launched the transitional community housing programmes. They renovate idle residential units in the market and sublet them to the disadvantaged at affordable rent. A similar policy has been implemented in Taiwan, in which the transitional housing project is operated by professional real estate agencies. How can Hong Kong be inspired by their experiences?

Land Sharing Pilot Scheme: Three points need to pay attention to


The Government has proposed the ‘Land Sharing Pilot Scheme’ (LSPS) to unlock the potential of large-scale private agricultural land in the New Territories. Yet, there are a few salient points to consider in response to the society’s needs and aspirations.

Allowing subsidised sale flats owners to pay land premium by instalments


Presently, subsidised sale flat (SSF) owners cannot sell their units freely unless full land premium is paid. However, considering the huge amount of the land premium, SSF owners can hardly pay the lump sum in one go. To tackle such issue, the Government should allow certain flexibility for SSF owners to pay the land premium by instalments. They can decide the repayment schedule and amount based on the market condition. In addition, setting a ceiling on the repayment is important for helping owners to plan ahead.

Hong Kong needs to build land reserve regardless economic volatility


The risk of an economic downturn inevitably affects the developments of Hong Kong. However, the city should not slow down land development. Aiming to ensure policy continuity, the Government should establish a comprehensive land reserve mechanism. Under this mechanism, land sources should be diverse, land use should be target-oriented and flexible, and land management should be systematic so that the city can provide steady and sufficient supply of land for the future.

Exploring spatial imagination with 3D city model


In recent years, the Government has expedited the development of digital infrastructure. It includes the ‘3D Planning and Design System’ rolled out by the Planning Department that aims to analyse proposed urban planning projects. 3D planning is still an early-stage technology in Hong Kong. Looking ahead, industry practitioners can use the technology to foster the city’s livability in the future.

Can cyclists and pedestrians share a path in Hong Kong?


‘Shared paths’ are designed to accommodate the movement of both pedestrians and cyclists and the concept has become increasingly popular in some countries. The Government has proposed to adopt the sharing concept on the cycling tracks in Kai Tak development area. How are shared paths different from traditional cycling tracks? Can they be widely developed in the city?