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URA Unveils New Project in Western District

The Urban Renewal Authority (URA) today announced the implementation of a $1,236 million redevelopment project at First Street/Second Street, Western District as part of its first five-year Corporate Plan and first-year Business Plan. A task force of some 85 staff began a three-day survey (today to Sunday) to update the occupancy records of an estimated 430 households.

This is the sixth project commenced by the Authority this year. It is also among the 25 projects announced by the former Land Development Corporation in 1998, which are treated as priority projects by the URA.

Outlining project details at an operation briefing for the media, Mr Stephen C.M. Ng, District Development Director of URA, said: "This project is located in one of the oldest districts in Hong Kong. It involves the comprehensive redevelopment of a group of buildings mostly over 40 years old and in a deteriorating living condition."

Covering a site area of 3,511 square metres, the project involves 293 property interests. An estimated 1,000 people of 430 households are affected.

Upon completion, the project will deliver about 32,140 square metres of residential area involving about 500 units and some retail units with a gross floor area of about 370 square metres. It will also incorporate an open space area of 700 square metres and a residential care home for the elderly of 2,200 square metres.

The Authority will issue purchase offers to the affected owners later to acquire all 293 property interests in this project. An estimated acquisition cost of about $525 million will be incurred.

Overall, the total development cost of the project, including the acquisition cost, re-housing cost for the tenants and construction cost as well as other expenses such as interest payment, etc, is estimated at about $1,236 million.

To ensure that the affected owners and tenants fully understand their rights and obligation, the Authority has scheduled a series of briefing sessions to be held between 6 and 9 December 2002 to explain the URA's detailed acquisition and rehousing arrangements and procedures. A hotline service (2588 2333) is also available to answer public enquiries about the project.

Besides, an Urban Renewal Social Service Team staffed by social workers will be shortly established to provide suitable assistance for affected residents.