For Discussion by

LegCo Panel on

Planning, Lands & Works

on 21 January 1997

"Comprehensive Development Area"
("CDA") Zones on Statutory Plans


This paper provides Members with information on the designation of "Comprehensive Development Area" ("CDA") zones on statutory plans and the progress on the implementation of these "CDA" zones.

2. The Purpose and Function of "CDA" Zone

2.1 Under s. 4(1) of the Town Planning Ordinance (the Ordinance), the Town Planning Board (the Board) is empowered to designate areas on statutory plans as "CDA" zone in order to encourage comprehensive development or redevelopment. It is an effective planning tool to achieve better planning particularly to address the environmental interface problems, to encourage amalgamation of small sites for a sizeable comprehensive development, to restructure the old urban areas and to ensure the adequate provision of Government/Institution/Community (G/IC), infrastructural, recreational and other facilities in a comprehensive manner.

2.2 Under the Ordinance, all development or redevelopment on land designated "CDA" is subject to planning permission from the Board ; and each applicant is required to prepare a master layout plan (MLP) for the proposed development or redevelopment giving such information as layout design, types of use, floor area for each use, development programme and any other related matters that the Board considers appropriate for the Board’s consideration of an application for planning permission.

2.3 In the course of preparation of the MLP, depending on circumstances related to the particular site, traffic impact assessment, environmental impact assessment and other studies are normally required to substantiate the scale and type of development so as to enable the Board to consider and decide on the overall design, the provision of the required infrastructural support, necessary environmental mitigation measures and programme of development within the designated area. It also ensures that the development is compatible with the site’s surrounding environment in terms of urban design, traffic and environmental considerations as well as to ensure the adequate provision of community and recreational facilities to cater for the needs of the particular development.

2.4 Similar to other landuse designations, the main function of the "CDA" zoning on statutory plans is to provide opportunities to encourage quasi-government bodies or private developers to proceed with comprehensive development of designated sites.

3. Designation of "CDA" Zone

3.1 Sites suitable for "CDA" zoning are identified through planning studies and landuse reviews. In many cases, "CDA" sites are designated in response to the request of development agencies including both quasi-government bodies and private developers. In the process of delineating the boundary of the "CDA" zone, the land ownership and land holding pattern of the subject site would be examined to ensure that the respective "CDA" site is of appropriate size and there is a reasonable prospect for implementation.

3.2 The planning intention of a "CDA" zone is set out in the Explanatory Statement accompanying the relevant statutory plan. The current practice is that broad development parameters such as plot ratio or maximum gross floor area, site coverage and building height are stipulated in the Notes to the relevant statutory plan. This is to provide certainty on the development intensity of a "CDA" site whilst allowing flexibility for private developers to vary the design of the "CDA" to meet specific development requirements and site constraints.

3.3 Planning briefs are normally prepared for the "CDA" sites to assist the prospective applicants to submit MLPs for the Board’s consideration. A brief is a non-statutory document setting out the specific objectives, the planning parameters and design requirements of the respective "CDA" site. The guidelines stated in the planning brief are to supplement the development restrictions stipulated in the Notes to the relevant statutory plan.

4. Progress on Implementation of "CDA" Proposals

4.1 As at November 1996, there were a total of 109 "CDA" sites designated on statutory plans. Amongst them, 23 are on Hong Kong Island, 18 in Kowloon and the remaining 68 in the New Territories. Twenty-eight of them are to be developed by quasi-government bodies such as the Hong Kong Housing Society, the Land Development Corporation, the Hong Kong Housing Authority, the Mass Transit Railway Corporation and the Kowloon Canton Railway Corporation. The other 81 are designated either in response to or to encourage private initiatives.

4.2 An analysis of the current position of the 109 "CDA" sites is in the Appendix. Amongst the 109 sites, development of 15 sites have been completed and 16 sites are under construction. Another 35 sites have obtained MLP approval and 8 sites are in the process of submitting MLP for the Board’s consideration. The remaining 35 "CDA" sites have not yet submitted MLP for the Board’s consideration, 10 of which, however, were only designated on the respective statutory plans in 1996.

4.3 The Town Planning Board regularly reviews the implementation progress of "CDA" sites. The practice is that the implementation of each "CDA" site is reviewed on the fifth year after its first publication on a statutory plan and every three years thereafter.

5. Conclusion

5.1 "CDA" is an effective means of bringing about desirable urban development and redevelopment. The Town Planning Board considers it desirable to maintain such a practice and refine on it as experience accrues.

Planning, Environment and Lands Branch
January 1997


Comprehensive Development Areas (CDA)
at November 1996



A. "CDA" sites with approved Master Layout
Plan (MLP)



(i) development completed



(ii) under construction



(iii) with approved MLP and in the process of seeking approval of building plans



(iv) with approved MLP only



B. "CDA" sites in the process of submitting MLP



C. "CDA" sites with no MLP submitted






Last Updated on 21 August 1998