Why East Lantau is the best location for reclamation to ease Hong Kong’s land shortage
The Standard 5 October, 2018
Wilfred Lau, Arup Fellow | Director, Arup
The debate over increasing land supply in Hong Kong has drawn a lot of public attention in recent months as the city is keen on finding ways to ease its housing woes. Land reclamation is obviously one of the most controversial options on the table. Among various proposals on reclamation made by local groups so far - from my perspective as an engineer - East Lantau is the most desirable location in Hong Kong for major reclamation.
Our Hong Kong Foundation published a proposal recently for building an "Enhanced East Lantau Metropolis” (EELM), a 2,200-hectare artificial island in East Lantau, which is equivalent to half of the size of Kowloon, to accommodate a population of up to 700,000 to 1.1 million people, as well as house new industries and recreational facilities.
Concerns have been raised over the proposal – notably about the ecological and environmental impact as well as connectivity. I was involved in the preliminary studies about the EELM, which cover various aspects such as water depth, hydrodynamics, engineering work, marine traffic and operations, costs, land restrictions and submarine utilities. Our studies show that the EELM is technically, financially and geographically feasible. ... ...