HONG KONG’S government is looking to provide 12,600 public housing flats at a former airport sight by 2026 in its bid to address home ownership issues among its citizens living in one of the world’s most expensive property markets.
Under the plan, the government is looking to hold on to seven sites in the Kai Tak Development area to turn them into public housing facilities instead of selling them off to private developers.
In recent months, the city’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam has gone on an all-out campaign to boost the affordability of homes in Hong Kong.
During her policy address in October, Lam announced the seven sites earmarked for public housing development while another four were announced in 2017.
In their application to the Kowloon District Council, the city’s two major public housing providers said the seven sites would provide 12,570 affordable homes in total.
The units will be able to house some 35,100 people.
The construction works are expected to take place between 2020 and 2022 and is due for completion between 2024 and 2026.
“In response to society’s keen demand for public sector housing, the government has been identifying land suitable for developing [such] housing in different districts,” the housing bodies said in the paper, as quoted by intellasia.net.
Earlier, the government announced an ambitious plan to build four artificial islands to address its housing crisis.
The artificial islands would be a fifth the size of Manhattan and could accommodate more than one million people.
The move to create the island would be similar to the palm-shaped archipelago in Dubai, or Forest City in Malaysia and Jurong Island in Singapore, as part of a government plan to create a gleaming property and commercial hub.
The huge “Lantau Tomorrow Vision project” involved 1,700 hectare (4,201 acre) islands in the city’s central towers, between Lantau Island and Hong Kong Island.
The islands were tipped to cost HK$500 billion (US$63.8 billion) and take the next two or three decades to complete 400,000 housing units for an estimated 1.1 million people starting in 2032.
The land reclamation would be Hong Kong’s largest and most expensive infrastructure project.
The development is also expected to create some 340,000 jobs over the next two to three decades.
“Improvement of livelihood and development of the economy and transport infrastructure … hinge on land resources, without which all strategies or plans will end up in empty talk,” Lam said in her policy address in October.