Reclamation off Ma Liu Shui ‘to take up to 15 years’

Innovation and Technology minister Alfred Sit on Thursday said it will take up to 15 years to complete a reclamation project off Ma Liu Shui announced in the chief executive’s policy address, even though it has not yet been decided what exactly the development will entail.

The reclamation project, together with land to be freed up by the relocation of the Sha Tin Sewage Treatment Works to caverns, is to provide a total of 88 hectares of new land, mainly for IT development.

At a press conference, Sit said they need to plan well ahead for the city’s IT development.

He said now is a “golden age” for the technology sector in the city, and it would be too late to start planning for the longer-term after the Science Park and Cyberport are expanded in the next few years.

The official said the government will soon conduct studies on the Ma Liu Shui project.

“For the sea reclamation [on the] eastern corridor, they may need time for more thorough study before we can really know about the programme that we can have. And also we need to know the demand from the trade industry,” he said.

Sit brushed aside concerns that the government proposal may turn out to be unpopular with nearby residents – as was the previous idea to build residential flats on the Ma Liu Shui reclamation site.

“The objection in the past mainly came from the concern on the transportation support and all sorts of issues that may cause the current residents some problems. Well, since we are going to [use] the land mainly for I&T development, we can expect the objection… will be minimised.”