2017-08-08
Run for Peace 2017
2017-07-19
INK GLOBAL 2017
2017-06-16
E-waste Collection
2014-01-28
Re: DB Crime Rates
2007-06-26
Community Centre
2006-02-15
ESF's PIS Project
2005-12-05
New School
2005-05-03
Dengue Fever

Dear DB residents,

Future Development of Discovery Bay – New Draft Master Layout Plan (MLP 7.0E)

Last week, members of the City Owners’ Committee received a consultation document from the Lands Department on the further development of Discovery Bay. This document is important to all of us. It will affect our property values, living environment, public recreational facilities, transport facilities, school places – every facet of our lives.

Unfortunately, the consultation document is woefully incomplete, lacking even a draft of the Master Layout Plan covering the future development of our community. The information provided is certainly not sufficient to make an informed submission to the Government. I have sent an initial reply to the Lands Department and the Islands District Office asking for a copy the draft MLP and the approval letter. For details please refer to my website:

http://www.amyung.org.hk/upload/pdf/Council_Work/Proposed_DBMLP_7.0E/consultation_paper_mlp_7.0e.pdf

and

http://www.amyung.org.hk/upload/pdf/Council_Work/Proposed_DBMLP_7.0E/db_mlp_7.0e_reply_amy_yung.pdf

I also list below some of my initial observations and would appreciate it if you would send me your comments after viewing the consultation document on my website.

1.          The last MLP was approved in 2000. Some of the facilities, such as the local school and Indoor Recreation Centre, still remain on the drawing board. The Education Bureau has remained non-committal for 15 years despite my repeated requests for the building of the school. I shall prepare a questionnaire shortly for DB residents to express their demand for school places in DB.

2.          With the planned increase in population and growing number of school children and teenagers, we need a full-sized all season sports pitch more desperately than ever. I suggest to build this facility behind the Lookout Point, i.e. Area 2a/2b on the MLP. HKR has proposed a golf driving range, adventure centre, etc.  at this location.

3.          With more commercial and residential developments in DB North, which will take DB’s population from the present 16,000 to the planned 25,000, the provision of a transport interchange at DB North is essential. In addition, the existing bus terminus at DB South needs to be reconstructed to cope with the additional demand. As far as I can see, nothing has been provided in the draft MLP to accommodate outside vehicles, internal and external HKR buses, school busses, delivery vans, CM and HKR’s private cars, the hotel coaches, golf carts and horse carts let alone taxis and tourist coaches.

4.          The plan proposes that a skate park be built at the present golf cart parking area at DB Plaza (Area 9a on the MLP), as part of HKR’s obligation to provide public recreational facilities under the land grant. No details are provided on the size of this facility or the re-provisioning of the parking area. At a special City Owners’ Committee Meeting held on 10th August, 1994, it was stated that this area had been transferred from HKR to City Management for the purpose of golf cart parking. The minutes state that no more land would be made available by HKR for such use. While I welcome the fact that Lands Department is pressing HKR to fulfil its lease obligations, it is unacceptable that HKR should attempt to claim back land that has already been transferred to CM. In fact, a Public Recreation Centre has already been built next to the horse stable at DB North commercial area. It is available for use immediately, but has until now been use as a storage area by HKR. It can be renovated into a skate park within months, rather than waiting for six years as stated in the consultation.

I also take this opportunity to update you on several aspects of my work during the last few months.

Traffic and Transportation

1.     Tung Chung Bus (DB01R) Terminus

In late March, I issued a questionnaire to collect views from DB residents on their preferred location for a temporary bus terminus for route DB01R, while re-development was carried out at the current terminus. I sought residents’ feedback on frequency of travel and final destination, both by email and by distribution at the Tung Chung bus terminus. 

While some respondents preferred a place near the MTR station, others would like a direct connection to the E-buses and New Lantao Buses to other destinations for access to schools, shopping, dining, North Lantau Hospital, etc.

HKR had proposed to relocate the terminus to the MTR station, but this was turned down by Transport Department. My counter-proposal to provide a pick-up and drop-off point near the MTR station while keeping the re-provisioned terminus for DB and New Lantao Buses unchanged, i.e. near the Ngong Ping 360 station, has now been approved by the Transport Department.

I will inform DB residents once the relocation date is announced.

2.     Ferry Fare Increase

Despite strong objections by DB residents, a fare increase of 9.5% for a term of one year was approved by Transport Department (TD) in 2013. Through the government’s Code on Access to Information, I discovered that the formal consultation – which covers the members of the City Owners’ Committee only – approved the increase, largely because all HKR-affiliated members of the COC (two from HKR, two from CM, two from the hotel (when they legally only have one representative) and one each from the clubs and DBIS) supported the increase. A number of village chairpersons did not bother to respond.

For 2014, the ferry company is applying for 4.1% and 8.1% increases for T-card and individual trips, respectively. I have highlighted the flaws in the consultation process to TD, and trust that TD will carry out proper due diligence this year.

Regarding the expansion of the government subsidy on ferry services to include DB, I have made many requests at the Islands District Council Meetings and at the annual meetings between Legislative Councillors and District Councillors. I believe that the Housing and Transport Bureau must revise its policy to deal with the increasing costs of ferry transportation. Subsidies will help to address the problem. But perhaps even more important, a government subsidy will force the developer to be more transparent about costs, as the operational details will need to be released to the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council. This will further help to control our ferry fares. The greatest obstacle we face at present is the lack of transparency in the setting of ferry fares.

3.  Taxis and Tourist Coaches

I understand that some residents would like to see taxi service provided to DB North. What many may not realize is that HKR has bundled taxis and tourists coaches together in their application. This has been the main reason for the lack of progress. Many residents strongly objected to free access to DB North by tourist coaches in a survey that I conducted 4 years ago. Among the concerns raised were disruption to the tranquility of DB, safety in DB North, especially with the expansion in the number of kindergartens, the opening of the sports pitch and community centre, the planned public recreational facilities, as well as safety hazards along Cheung Tung Road.                   

4.     Cheung Tung Road

The road was not built for heavy traffic. There have been 3 fatal accidents and numerous casualties during the last two years. Right now, part of the road leading to Tung Chung is closed to allow for work on a flyover for the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge. The works will last till 2016, followed by the Tung Chung New Town sewage project along the road till 2020. I have urged TD to carefully consider the safety hazards on Cheung Tung Road and take appropriate measures to prevent more traffic accidents.

Environment

A public consultation session was carried out early this year at DB Community Hall to seek DB residents’ views on Waste Management and the building of the mega incinerator at Shek Kwu Chau. An overwhelming majority of our residents are of the view that no incinerator should be built and we have also urged the Government to take more pro-active steps in waste recycling as a policy priority.

Community Facilities

The DB North Community Centre has become a major hub for non-membership sports and social activities. Upon the request of DB residents, I have asked the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) to organize Tai Chi, table tennis, social and jazz dancing classes. I have also booked the main hall for badminton groups on Thursday and Friday evenings. You are welcome to join these activities.

Future Event

I have booked the DB North Community Hall on Saturday morning from 10:00am to 12:00pm, 21 June 2014 for a talk by the Buildings Department on the Statutory Building and Window Inspections scheme, which I know is an issue of concern to many of you. This will be followed by a briefing by the ICAC on prevention of corruption in tendering, with particular reference to building renovation projects. Please mark your diary. Notice will be sent out at a later stage.

Warmest regards,

Amy Yung

Islands District Council Member (Discovery Bay)

Please feel free to forward this message to your friends and neighbours in DB.