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Old July 20th, 2005, 10:35 AM   #21
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How do Hong Kong Property Developers sell their units? I understand that in HK the projects are always oversubscribed so there is some sort of bidding process. Is this still the case or was this only pre 97?
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Old July 21st, 2005, 06:43 AM   #22
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The units are sold internally, then released to external buyers. There used to be lineups to buy units back in the 1990s before the Asian financial crisis. Now, the process is more subdued and purchasers are more rational. Oversubscription doesn't happen very often anymore.
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Old July 21st, 2005, 11:21 AM   #23
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What do you mean they're sold internally? YOu mean in house selling agents then if it's not sold then it's release to all 3rd party selling agents?

I thought the market there is so hot that the worlds most expensive condo was just sold there. A very hot market ussually indicates greater demand than supply and oversubscription.
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Old July 22nd, 2005, 12:30 AM   #24
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Internal sales mean the developer will sell some units to its employees and business partners. Then they are released to the general public.

New home sales are not normally made through real estate agents. Agents are generally used for re-sale transactions.
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Old July 22nd, 2005, 04:33 AM   #25
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Kerry outbids rivals for Sai Ying Pun residential project
Developer's plan to build luxury homes challenges perceptions of older district

Peggy Sito
22 July 2005
South China Morning Post

Kerry Properties has outbid 10 rivals to win the contract for the Urban Renewal Authority residential redevelopment in Sai Ying Pun estimated to cost $2.5 billion.

This is the developer's first residential project in the aged Western District, where property consultants expect the MTR Corp's proposed West Island line extension to prompt large-scale redevelopment in coming years.

The new MTR line, scheduled for completion in five years, will add three new stations - University, Sai Ying Pun and Kennedy Town. The line will cut travel time between Sheung Wan and Kennedy Town by at least half.

Kerry Properties, which beat blue-chip property players such as Cheung Kong (Holdings), Sun Hung Kai Properties, Henderson Land Development and Sino Land in the public tender, said the project at First Street and Second Street in Sai Ying Pun would yield 600 two and three-bedroom units.

It will also have 100 car-parking slots and an unspecified amount of retail space.

With a site area of about 38,000 square feet, the project will yield a gross floor area of about 425,000 sq ft.

The project will include an 11,800 sq ft home for the elderly and about 7,500 sq ft of landscaped open space.

Kerry Properties, which focuses on luxury residential properties, said it would cultivate a "luxury home" image for the project in the old district.

The developer did not disclose its expected investment costs but property consultants and developers estimated the project's value at $2 billion to $2.5 billion.

Alvin Lam Tsz-pun, associate director of Midland Surveyors, said Western District was poised for dramatic change with the introduction of the new MTR line.

Developers would speed up the pace of redevelopment in the district, he said.

But Mr Lam wondered whether Kerry Properties could really market its development as a luxury project due to its location, noting its proximity to a wet market.

Mr Lam projected that selling prices for the finished project could exceed $5,000 per sq ft when marketed within one or two years.

Kerry Properties is part of the Kerry Group, the largest shareholder in SCMP Group, which publishes the South China Morning Post.
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Old July 22nd, 2005, 06:02 AM   #26
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Western district could rather quickly become "the" place to live due to its phenomenal location and neighborhood-privacy combination rarely felt in other locales of HK...

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Old July 22nd, 2005, 12:46 PM   #27
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$5,000 per sq.ft. is that in HK or US $?

Is this expensive and high end or there are others much higher. I understand the most expensive per sq.m condo in the world just crossed there, the one in kowloon how much is that per sq.m. ? Is this reflective of HK prices or more a special case.
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Old July 22nd, 2005, 09:42 PM   #28
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$5000 / sq ft. are in HK$.

It is around the lower end of higher-class housing.
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Old July 22nd, 2005, 10:06 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline
$5000 / sq ft. are in HK$.

It is around the lower end of higher-class housing.
how much is that in USD($)
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Old July 23rd, 2005, 02:27 AM   #30
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The exchange rate is about US$1 to HK$7.8. HK$5000 is about US$640.
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Old July 23rd, 2005, 07:17 AM   #31
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Red-chip developer steps up land purchases
Raymond Wang, Hong Kong Standard
July 11, 2005

Despite scrapping plans to lodge a bid for an urban renewal project in Western district, China Overseas Land and Investment has secured two development sites in Kowloon in two months for nearly HK$300 million.

The company has also indicated an interest in a HK$500 million urban renewal housing project in Tai Kok Tsui, for which the deadline for submission is today.

The red-chip developer quit Hong Kong in 1997 to focus on the mainland. But the revival in the SAR's economy and property market last year has prompted the company to return.

The company's commitment to the territory's real estate market was evidenced by two land purchases recently in urban areas. It bought a Shell petrol station site in To Kwa Wan for HK$173 million. In May, it acquired a residential site in Sham Shui Po for almost HK$100 million.

The company plans to redevelop the To Kwa Wan site into a 27-story residential-commercial complex for about HK$290 million, including building and land costs, director and deputy general manager Yau Wai-kong said.

The 7,400-square-foot site at 307 To Kwa Wan Road could yield a gross floor area of about 66,000 sq ft. The project will provide 100 flats, with sizes ranging from 500 sq ft to 800 sq ft.

The Shell petrol station, which is still operating, is expected to relocate.

Yau said the company is mulling submitting an expression of interest in the Larch Street-Bedford Road redevelopment in Tai Kok Tsui, the Urban Renewal Authority's second project this year.

The project is expected to attract more than 20 developers, including Henderson Land, K Wah International, New World Development, Wheelock Properties, Sun Hung Kai Properties, Sino Land and Cheung Kong (Holdings), analysts said. The 13,200 sq ft site could generate a gross floor area of about 119,000 sq ft, providing 160 apartments.

China Overseas Land did not join the race for the tender of the URA's housing project in Western which closed last Friday, although the company was shortlisted to submit a bid.

Shares of China Overseas Land fell 1.96 percent Friday to close at HK$1.50.
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Old July 24th, 2005, 07:45 AM   #32
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Community counts in a world city
22 July 2005
South China Morning Post

Local residents and tourists who look at Hong Kong's urban renewal strategy may be forgiven for thinking it is on a par with other world cities. After all, it seems to have produced a modern, civilised and people-centred vision of urban renewal. Isn't this another benchmark proof that we are indeed "Asia's World City"?

Unfortunately, the reality proves that the contrary is true.

The government's strategy sets out principles that sound so reassuring. There is "preserving social networks", for one. Then there are the objectives of "preserving area characteristics as far as practical", and "sustainable development of the community".

But there is a vast and bewildering discrepancy between the government's vision and the actual practices of its agent - the Urban Renewal Authority.

Take, for example, the Lee Tung Street and McGregory Street urban renewal project in Wan Chai - better known as the Wedding Card Street redevelopment. The authority has turned a deaf ear to the outcry against the plan from affected residents, the local community, professionals and the Wan Chai District Council. The authority has refused to work with local residents, and instead has steadfastly tried to convince them to accept the compensation package and move out of the area.

The authority's failure to co-operate with the residents will ultimately destroy the original community, its social network and sustainable development.

The authority has said it might consider re-establishing a wedding-card-themed shopping arcade in the future development. But one questions the wisdom, sincerity and commitment of the authority - given its intention to wipe out the unique quality of the wedding card printing industry in Lee Tung Street.

In March, the residents submitted a planning application to the Town Planning Board (TPB) with a proposal that could strike a balance between preserving the area and achieving the main objectives of the renewal strategy. This is a significant milestone in the development of town planning in Hong Kong, in that the application was initiated and actively supported by local residents.

Although the application was subsequently rejected by the TPB, it reaffirmed that "the proposed 'people-centred' approach be recommended to the Urban Renewal Authority". It said the authority "should establish closer co-operation with the local residents for preservation of the social network and the local character of the area".

While the authority has not taken any action to foster community co-operation, the residents have carried out further studies and furnished supplementary information to the TPB for an appeal hearing today.

Most western countries have already incorporated local residents' involvement in their town planning and urban renewal processes. In Tokyo, the city government gives financial support to local residents affected by urban renewal, so they can propose alternatives. In Taipei, the involvement of local residents is stipulated in the urban renewal process.

Wouldn't you agree that a review of our urban renewal strategy and its execution are long overdue? Wouldn't you expect our Town Planning Board to accept an appeal from local residents?

Such a move would clearly demonstrate that the board's vision to plan Hong Kong was on a par with other world cities.

Steve Chan Yiu-fai is chairman of the urban renewal taskforce of Wan Chai district council
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Old July 24th, 2005, 08:36 AM   #33
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i wish i go to Hong Kong when i was a child```
P.S:does clothes in Hong Kong are very cheap?
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Old July 24th, 2005, 11:42 PM   #34
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Expression of Interest for URA's Larch Street/Bedford Road Project
Urban Renewal Authority Press Release
July 11, 2005

In response to media enquiries on the result of the expression of interest exercise for the Larch Street/Bedford Road joint development project in Tai Kok Tsui, the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) today (Monday) issued the following statement:

A total of 23 submissions have been received expressing an interest in the joint development of the Larch Street/Bedford Road project site.

A tender review panel under the URA Board will shortlist the qualified parties and invite them to submit a formal tender for the development.

It is expected that the tender exercise will take place in the near future.

The project covers a site area of about 13,200 square feet and upon completion, is expected to deliver a gross floor area of about 119,000 square feet for residential and commercial use. In addition, about 4,300 square feet of landscaped area will be provided.
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Old July 25th, 2005, 11:14 AM   #35
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真琴:
the clothes is not cheap in hk ,especially compare with china.
except the very famous brand is latest model than china,the rest of `normal clothes' is not ahead guangzhou or shenzhen so much
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Old July 25th, 2005, 04:59 PM   #36
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There is a lot more selection of brand name clothing in Hong Kong since many international luxury retailers have a significant HK presence. Locally, the more middle-class retailers sell T-shirts as low as HK30-40 a piece.
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Old July 25th, 2005, 06:28 PM   #37
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$5b battle on to save Central Market
Make developer preserve or incorporate Bauhaus gem, say architects, council

Chloe Lai
25 July 2005
South China Morning Post

A planning battle is brewing over the future of what could be the last example in Hong Kong of one of the 20th century's major architectural styles, with billions of dollars at stake for the government and developers.

Architects, with the backing of district councillors, are calling for preservation of the Central Market - or at least for any development to be built on top of the existing structure.

Campaigners have accepted the struggle to save another building in the Bauhaus style, the Wan Chai Market, has been lost.

The government is already preparing to auction the prime Central site through the application list in February, with some estimates tipping a price tag of more than $5 billion. The Hong Kong Institute of Architects hopes it can convince the government to make preserving the building a condition of sale, and to lower the development density.

The campaign was endorsed at a meeting of the Central and Western District Council last Monday. Institute president Bernard Lim Wan-fung said: "We are not anti-development. We just want to see the unique and historic building preserved in some way."

Conditions of sale for the site have yet to be disclosed but the government has said it will have a plot ratio of 15, which could allow a building of more than 30 storeys.

As well as incorporating the existing building, the institute is suggesting a plot ratio of 8, which surveyors say would slash the value of the site - and developers' potential profits.

It is the second challenge to a proposed auction in three months, and has brought calls for the town planning mechanism to be updated to protect sensitive sites from overdevelopment and avoid protests.

The market, built in 1938, will be the last Bauhaus-style structure left in Hong Kong after the Wan Chai Market is demolished by Chinese Estates Holdings for urban renewal.

Mr Lim of the architects' institute said development could go ahead over the existing structure, as had been done successfully with The Peninsula hotel. "There must be win-win-win solutions for the community, the government and the developers," he said.

He believed the site would be more valuable if it incorporated the market building. "The historic building will make anything attached more attractive and charming. I believe visionary developers will agree with me."

But Ricky Wong Kwong-yiu, a director of Wharf Properties, said: "No one should deprive the site of its development potential. If the government adds any preservation condition, developers will automatically discount the price."

In the earlier challenge, a harbour protection group urged the scrapping of plans to sell the old Government Supplies Depot site in North Point, saying the development would create a wall effect on the waterfront.

Albert Lai Kwong-tak, convenor of the Citizen Envisioning @ Harbour said if the government created a new zoning category to protect heritage sites and made its Urban Design Guideline mandatory, it would save itself a lot of trouble.

"The community nowadays wants good town planning and to see our cultural heritage properly protected. If we have a system, the civil society doesn't have to campaign on individual projects."
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Old July 29th, 2005, 06:25 PM   #38
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Skyscrapers are the limit for Hong Kong conservationist
A local author wants to keep what is left of old buildings hidden within Central's glass canyons, writes Linda Yeung
28 July 2005
South China Morning Post

Uppermost in Roger Ho Yao-sheng's mind as he walks up the escalator in Central is not the multitude of bars and restaurants in SoHo, but the historical significance of the area. It was the birthplace of the 1911 revolution, where Dr Sun Yat-sen and his followers mapped out plans to overthrow the Qing government, according to the long-time resident of the area.

The escalator is also featured in the opening chapter of Ho's new book, The Journey Between Old and Modern Central District, launched at the Hong Kong Book Fair, which ended on Monday. It marks another attempt by the conservation advocate to remind people of the rich heritage of the financial hub.

Having grown up in Lei Yuen Tung Street, now a popular shopping alley, Ho devotes himself to researching and lobbying for the preservation of historic sites, in the time he can spare from running his family's garment business.

Partly driven by childhood memories, he has focused his attention on Central, at the heart of what was formally known as the city of Victoria. It held the key to Hong Kong's transformation from a sleepy fishing port into an international financial centre. "Various sites in the area should be kept because they represent a real Hong Kong of the past," he says.

"My parents were street vendors selling clothes and we lived in a three-storey old building in Lei Yuen Tung Street. Only a couple of similar buildings remain there. At night, I remember, people often went fishing at the harbour front, where Jardine House is today."

Ho wants to stop overdevelopment in the district. Pointing to a construction site through the window of a coffee shop on Hollywood Road, he says: "What will go up will probably be another skyscraper with a glassy appearance and six floors of restaurants at the bottom."

Ho, who also wrote Collective Memories of the Central Police Station, released last year, is fighting for the survival of the historic compound on Hollywood Road, comprising the former Central Police Station, magistrates' court and Victoria Prison, all built in the mid-19th century.

The site was earmarked for tourism-related restoration and development in 2003, but due to public objections the government has delayed putting it up for tender. "The compound should be kept in its original state, and not turned into another shopping mall housed in an old building," says Ho.

A recent poll of 1,851 visitors, conducted by the Central and Western District Council, the Conservancy Association and the Hong Kong Institute of Architects, showed that more than 90 per cent of respondents wanted it to become a public museum. Councillors have called on the government to introduce a new zoning category under the town planning mechanism to protect heritage.

Ho has lobbied the Central and Western District Council to turn the Hollywood Road neighbourhood - including 45 blocks of low-rise buildings built in the 1940s and 50s on Shing Wong Street - into a heritage zone.

The buildings have been earmarked for redevelopment by the Urban Renewal Authority, which is now in negotiation with residents. They'll fall into the hands of developers, Ho says, but he hopes at least a few will be retained and turned into a museum showing the way of life of the early residents. "It's the largest cluster of Chinese buildings in Hong Kong, and you can still find old printing houses and the oldest silversmith in the territory living there," he says.

Councillor Kam Nai-wai supports the idea of heritage zones. He also shares Ho's views that the Sun Yat-sen Historical Trail in the district, which takes visitors to 13 spots where Sun studied, or met with his fellow revolutionaries, serves little purpose. "At each spot there is only a sign. Visitors have to resort to their own imagination," he says.

"Instead, two heritage zones can be set up, one around Hollywood Road, and the other with the Western Market at the centre. But for that to happen, there needs to be preservation, road improvement works, better road signs and other support measures," says Mr Kam, who cites Ladder Street as another "relic" worth keeping.

The SoHo area could be turned into an artists' village, offering low-cost studios for artists whose works can be showcased along the escalator, says Ho. "People's impression of Central is that it's got the IFC, Landmark, SoHo and Lan Kwai Fong. The government is lacking foresight. Bars and restaurants are everywhere. They may cease to be an attraction with mainland tourists in a few years, given that mainland cities are developing fast.

"Hong Kong needs to have its own unique offerings to be a world-class city; otherwise it will just be a city within China," he says.

Ho cites Macau as a good example of how a city can preserve its historic landmarks, notably the 29 sites that were recently added to the Unesco's World Heritage list.

"There needs to be a balance in development, like it's important for a person to have a balanced diet to be healthy," says Ho.
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Old August 7th, 2005, 04:49 AM   #39
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It's the Last Waltz for Lee Tung's residents
Chester Yung
6 August 2005
Hong Kong Standard

For 30 years, Wan Chai's Lee Tung Street was the mecca for Hong Kong's young couples who rushed there to order their wedding-invitation cards.

But the government threw a shroud over the colorful street and its decorations Friday by gazetting its official resumption under the Land Resumption Ordinance at the request of the Urban Renewal Authority.

The remaining 30 residents now have three months to pack up and leave their buildings _ and a large chunk of history _ to the wrecker's ball.

"They [the remaining residents] have no choice, but to move out under the ordinance," a Lands Department spokesman told The Standard.

Owners and tenants affected may make statutory claims under the ordinance and, if the claims cannot be settled by agreement, they may apply to the Lands Tribunal for adjudication, the spokesman said.

However, the residents accused the government of using the ordinance as a "forcible weapon" to tear down a community which carried a lot of history, memories and a part of Hong Kong's cultural heritage.

Lee Tung Street, better known as Wedding Card Street, is where Hong Kong's publishing business began.

Over the past 30 years, tens of thousands of couples have visited the shops there to order their wedding cards, namecards and traditional Chinese calendars.

In 2003, the URA announced it would spend HK$3.58 billion to redevelop Lee Tung and McGregor streets.

Last December, the authority made an application to request the government to apply the Land Resumption Ordinance to resume the area.

The government claimed the redevelopment "would help rejuvenate the old district concerned and improve the living conditions of the residents."

But Christopher Law, a leading architect specializing in urban planning, said Friday the renewal program will break down a community network that had taken years to cultivate.

In a bid to conserve the historical uniqueness of Lee Tung Street, some residents formed the H15 Concern Group in 2002. They submitted a "people-oriented redevelopment plan" to the Town Planning Board, but this was rejected.

The group organised weekly meetings to discuss the issue and held 60 conferences and 12 residents' workshops with up to 300 people attending. They also built their own Web site to publicize their discussions about the renewal plan.

Cultural affairs commentator Leung Man-to described their efforts as an "unprecedented genuine people's participation project in Hong Kong's history."

But, in the end, it all came to nought as the government flipped over the record from the Wedding March to the Last Waltz.
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Old August 13th, 2005, 08:03 AM   #40
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Draft urban renewal plan for Lai Chi Kok Road/Kweilin Street and Yee Kuk Street published
Friday, August 12, 2005
Government Press Release

The Town Planning Board today (August 12) announced the publication of the draft Urban Renewal Authority Lai Chi Kok Road/Kweilin Street and Yee Kuk Street Development Scheme Plan (DSP).

The scheme area covers about 3,345 square metres. It comprises two linked portions of land - one is bounded by Lai Chi Kok Road, Kweilin Street and Yee Kuk Street while the other is on the opposite side across Yee Kuk Street.

The scheme area is designated as "Comprehensive Development Area". It is planned to be developed by means of the Development Scheme prepared under section 25 of the Urban Renewal Authority Ordinance. The Development Scheme intends to achieve environmental improvement through comprehensive redevelopment, promoting efficient land use and providing open space accessible to the public.

The proposed comprehensive redevelopment will accommodate residential and commercial uses. A public open space of not less than 400 square metres with direct street frontage will also be provided.

The Urban Renewal Authority will be required to submit a Master Layout Plan for the Scheme area to the Town Planning Board for approval.

The draft Urban Renewal Authority Lai Chi Kok Road/Kweilin Street and Yee Kuk Street DSP No. S/K5/URA1/1 is now available for public inspection during office hours at the following locations:

* Secretariat of the Town Planning Board, 15th Floor, North Point Government Offices, 333 Java Road;

* Planning Enquiry Counter, 17th Floor, North Point Government Offices;

* Planning Enquiry Counter, 14th Floor, Sha Tin Government Offices, 1 Sheung Wo Che Road;

* Tsuen Wan and West Kowloon District Planning Office, 27th Floor, Tsuen Wan Government Offices, 38 Sai Lau Kok Road; and

* Sham Shui Po District Office, Ground Floor, Cheung Sha Wan Government Offices, 303 Cheung Sha Wan Road.

Any person can make written representations in respect of the draft DSP to the Secretary of the Town Planning Board on or before October 12, 2005. Representations made to the Board will be available for public inspection.

In accordance with section 25(9) of the Urban Renewal Authority Ordinance, the draft DSP replaces the Cheung Sha Wan Outline Zoning Plan in relation to the area delineated and described in the draft DSP. A draft plan titled Cheung Sha Wan Outline Zoning Plan No. S/K5/28 showing the relevant replacement is available for public inspection concurrently with the draft DSP.

Copies of the draft DSP are available for sale at the Map Publications Centres in North Point and Yau Ma Tei. The electronic version of the plan can be viewed at the Board's website at http://www.info.gov.hk/tpb/.
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