This paper seeks Members’ views on the Third Comprehensive Transport Study (CTS-3) before we seek funds for the consultancy study from the Finance Committee.


2. In 1989, the Second Comprehensive Transport Study (CTS-2) formulated a transport development strategy for the Territory up to 2001 for a population forecast of 6.3 million. To take account of uncertainties in long-term input assumptions and forecasts in the process of transport planning, the study recommended that the transport development strategy should be monitored and updated at regular intervals, taking account of new development plans. One of CTS-2’s principal transport development assumptions at the time was the ‘Kai Tak Airport Retained’ scenario.

3. Accordingly, an updating of CTS-2 was completed in 1993. This updated study (CTS-2 Update) took account of the recommendations of the Port and Airport Development Strategy Study, Metroplan and Reclamation Studies of Central and Wan Chai, Green Island and West Kowloon, in particular the Government’s decision to relocate the airport to Chek Lap Kok. We also extended the planning horizon up to 2011 for a population forecast of 6.63 million.

4. Since then, we have completed a number of transport and planning development studies. In particular, the Territorial Development Strategy (TDS) Review has produced an updated set of land use planning data for the territory, while the CROSSLINKS Study has carried out a broad review of the road capacity requirements in the territory associated with new cross-border transport links. As a result of these studies, we now need to revisit many major input assumptions used in CTS-2 Update. In addition, we have improved the transport modelling procedures previously used to project person trips and goods vehicle movements.

Justification for the Study

5. As mentioned above, many major input assumptions used in CTS-2 Update have become outdated. In particular, the TDS Review has projected population scenarios of 7.5 million and 8.1 million. As part of a continuing planning exercise, we need to conduct the CTS-3 to review the recommendations of CTS-2 Update and other recent transport studies in a co-ordinated manner. Indeed, during the public consultation on the recommendations of the 1994 Working Party on Measures to Address Traffic Congestion, commissioning of the CTS-3 found general support.

6. The objective of CTS-3 is to formulate an integrated and up-to-date transport strategy up to 2011 (the same planning horizon as the TDS Review) as a guide to future transport planning studies and development strategies for different areas of the territory. It will determine what we should do to achieve and maintain an acceptable level of mobility for passengers and freight by road, rail and ferry, having due regard to budgetary constraints and environmental issues.

7. If we do not proceed with CTS-3, we would not be able to assess the transport implications of the latest land use plans and other development changes. This would lead to inadequate and untimely provision of transport infrastructure to meet the increases in travel demands, resulting in a poor transport system and ever worsening traffic congestion in the territory.

Scope of the Study

8. The proposed scope of the study comprises -

  1. Highway development strategy - We will develop a highway transport infrastructure programme by carrying out the following tasks -
      Assessing the adequacy of the recommended highway projects put forward in CTS-2 Update and all recent strategic planning and transport studies in the light of forecast demands;
      Developing new infrastructure proposals, including a preliminary design of their alignments and other alternatives such as tunnel; and
      Prioritising the proposed projects, taking into account traffic forecasts, financial and economic evaluations, and their environmental impacts. We will produce a cost estimate of each project.

  2. Public transport development strategy - We will formulate a public transport development strategy, including -
      Reviewing the adequacy of the public transport networks up to 2011; and
      Assessing the proposals in the Railway Development Strategy and the proposals for railway developed in the TDS Review up to 2011.

  3. Management measures and tolling strategy - On the management of transport demand, our tasks will include -
      Reviewing the strategy for the management of transport demand as set out in the 1990 White Paper on Transport Policy in Hong Kong;
      Updating various management measures recommended in CTS-2 Update;
      Reviewing measures recommended by the Working Party on Measures to Address Traffic Congestion; and
      Recommending a tolling strategy for road crossings/tunnels. In determining a tolling strategy, we will take account of public acceptance, the findings of relevant transport planning studies and the need to achieve better traffic distribution among competing corridors.

  4. Cross-border Traffic Assessment - We will assess how cross-border traffic demands could be accommodated and our tasks will comprise -
      Examining the effect of proposed additional cross-border road links to Shenzhen and Zhuhai. We will consolidate the latest findings and recommendations on cross-border development. We will identify the preliminary layout of new road connections between the new border crossings and the urban areas, and assess their traffic impacts on the road network of the territory;
      Assessing the cross-border railway proposals put forward in the Railway Development Strategy and the TDS Review in the light of latest forecast demands of passenger and freight traffic;
      Assessing the adequacy of provision of cross-border ferry services, both passenger and freight traffic, and the role of the ferry mode in the transport system up to 2011; and
      Examining possible major road project(s) linking North Eastern New Territories with urban area to the south and Yantian in Shenzhen to the north.

  5. Environmental assessment - We will carry out the following tasks with a view to formulating the transport strategy in an environmentally acceptable manner -
      Undertaking a review of the baseline environmental conditions with regard to the existing transport systems;
      Identifying appropriate environmental performance indicators, criteria and evaluation methodologies for strategic environmental evaluation of CTS-3 proposals; and
      Assessing the environmental impacts of each transport infrastructure scenario and identifying appropriate mitigating measures.

Need to Engage Consultants

9. The comprehensive nature of CTS-3 demands dedicated and experienced staff resources in several specialised fields, including transport planning and modelling, highway engineering, economic evaluation and environmental assessment. It is not possible to re-deploy Transport Department’s existing staff resources to carry out the study because of other commitments and the lack of the necessary expertise in the economic and environmental fields. We therefore have to appoint consultants to undertake the study.


10. We will consult the Transport Advisory Committee on 12 November 1996 on the scope of CTS-3.

11. We will fully consult Members upon completion of the study. We will also consult members of the public in the form of a Green Paper on Transport Policy in the light of study recommendations.

Estimated Study Cost

12. We would select consultants for the study through competitive tendering. The estimated cost of the study is $15.3 million and the breakdown is as follows -

Item of work

Estimated cost
($ million)

(a) Transport planning and assessment


(b) Environment assessment


(c) Consultation, reporting, computing facilities and surveys


(d) Contingency


(e) Inflation-related allowance





13. We intend to seek Finance Committee’s approval of funds as soon as possible. Subject to funding approval, we will commence the study in March/April 1997 for completion in mid 1998.

Transport Department
November 1996

Last Updated on 21 August 1998