HONG KONG, June 30 (Xinhua) -- Kai Tak Development (KTD) is a huge and highly complex development project spanning a total area of over 320 hectares covering the site of the former Kai Tak International Airport and the adjoining hinterland districts of Kowloon City, Wong Tai Sin and Kwun Tong to the north of the Hong Kong Island.
Relocation of Hong Kong's international airport from the densely-populated Kowloon city to Chek Lap Kok in July 1998 offers a good opportunity for the development of the Kai Tak area. After thorough planning and public consultation process, the finalized KTD scheme was proposed and later approved by the Chief Executive Council in 2007.
The project was launched in 2009 and is expected to take about 12 years. Upon completion, the area, comprising various communities, residential housing, business and tourism facilities and land for future infrastructure construction, will become a new landmark fronting the Victoria Harbor, which separates the Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula.
According to the scheme, the major infrastructure facilities include a cruise terminal, public rental housing, the Shatin-to- Central Link of the local railway, a multi-purpose stadium complex, a metro park and hospitals, among others.
Construction of the first berth of the cruise terminal and public rental housing project is scheduled to be completed by 2013 and the second berth of the terminal and other major public facilities will be completed step by step in the years to follow.
The new cruise terminal, with two berths, will be able to accommodate 360-meter-long, 220,000-ton passenger liners with displacement up to 110,000 tons. The first berth is expected to be commissioned in mid 2013 and will be capable of mooring the world's largest cruise vessels. The second berth will commence operation in 2014 for anchoring medium-sized cruise vessels. By then, the terminal will be able to handle about 3,000 passengers per hour.
The public rental housing project is located on the north apron of the former Kai Tak Airport. A total of six apartment buildings with about 5,200 flats will be built in a 3.47-hectare area of Site 1A of the project, and nine apartment buildings with some 8, 100 flats will be erected in an 5.7-hectare area of Site 1B. The apartment buildings could be put into use in 2013 at the earliest, accommodating a total of 33,000 residents.
The KTD project also boasts many green features such as a photovoltaic system utilizing renewable energy, efficient light fittings, a rainwater harvesting and plant irrigation system, with a total a green coverage of 2.7 hectares.