Govt sets minimum 280 sq ft rule for housing project

The government has set a minimum flat size requirement of 280 square feet for a residential plot that it is tendering out in the next quarter.

The site on Castle Peak Road in Tuen Mun is expected to provide 2,020 flats.

Development Secretary Michael Wong explained that the government came up with the minimum size based on its experience with the first project under its starter home scheme.

“We’ve looked at the subsidised housing project at Anderson Road, in that case the minimum flat size is 23 square metres, so it’s basically 10 percent above that,” said Wong, referring to a project in Kwun Tong where the winning bidder, CK Asset, was bound by the size restriction and a requirement to sell the flats at a discount.

“Given the position of private housing on the home ownership ladder, we believe it’s one rung up, so we do believe it’s appropriate for us to set a slightly bigger minimum size.”

Wong added that the government is planning to apply the 280-square-feet requirement to all the residential plots it puts up for sale in the upcoming financial year.

He pointed out that the new measure is expected to cover about 13 percent of the SAR’s private housing supply.

Factoring in housing supply from projects under the MTR and the Urban Renewal Authority as well as redevelopment projects, the government estimated that private housing supply this financial year will go past 20,000 units – 55 percent above its target of 12,900 units.

Wong also announced that the government will re-tender a commercial site in Tung Chung in the next few months, after it was withdrawn last year following a lack of bids that met the official reserve price.