Legislative Council Panel on Transport
Public Transportation and Crowd Control Arrangements for
the Fireworks Display at Lantau Link


This paper provides an outline of a preliminary proposal on crowd control, traffic and public transport arrangements from Kowloon to Yuen Long, in particular along Castle Peak Road and Tuen Mun Road and in Tsing Yi, on the day of a fireworks display which will be held on Sunday, 27 April 1997 as part of the Lantau Link Opening Ceremony.


2. The Airport Core Programme (ACP) transport corridor is being opened in phases to the public starting from February 1997. The West Kowloon Expressway and Kwai Chung Viaduct of Route 3 were opened on 20 February while the Sai Ying Pun Section of Route 7 was opened on 26 February. The Western Harbour Crossing will be opened in April and the remaining parts of the ACP transport corridor, including the Tsing Yi Section of Route 3, Lantau Link, and the North Lantau Expressway, will be opened to traffic in May 1997.

Lantau Link Opening Ceremony & Fireworks Display

3. To mark the completion of the ACP transport network, an opening ceremony of the Lantau Link is being organized by the New Airport Projects Co-ordination Office (NAPCO) in conjunction with various Government departments and outside agencies for Sunday, 27 April 1997. A fireworks display, sponsored by the Sun Hung Kai Properties Limited, will form part of the Opening Ceremony.

4. The fireworks display will start at 8 pm and will last for about 20 minutes. There will be live television coverage of the fireworks display and a live variety show will follow. A map showing the location of the fireworks display is at Annex.

Crowd Control, Traffic and Public Transport Arrangements

5. An inter-departmental working group comprising, amongst others, representatives from the Police, Transport Department, Home Affairs Department, Marine Department, and NAPCO has been working on detailed crowd control, traffic and public transport arrangements. In planning these arrangements, we have borne in mind the following factors :

  1. the need to ensure public safety at various locations, especially along the stretch of Castle Peak Road facing the Lantau Link and the adjacent beaches;
  2. the need to minimize inconvenience to local residents who live at these viewing points or their vicinity as well as the travelling public who may have to use the connecting road network;
  3. the need to disperse large crowds who may turn up at these viewing points on a fine day on 27 April as expeditiously as possible; and
  4. the experience gained during the recent Gold Coast Fireworks Display on crowd control and public transportation arrangements.

6. Bearing in mind the above factors, in particular the potential hazards that may result if large number of spectators spill over onto Castle Peak Road, it is considered that pedestrianisation of the section of Castle Peak Road between Hoi On Road and Siu Lam Interchange provides the only practical solution. To implement this, the following measures are necessary :

Road Closures & Traffic Diversions

I. Castle Peak Road & Adjoining Roads

7. The following sections of Castle Peak Road and adjourning roads will be closed at 5:00 pm (or earlier if the situation so warrants) on 27 April as shown roughly in Annex :

  1. Castle Peak Road between the junction with Hoi On Road and the Interchange with Tuen Mun Road at Tai Lam Chung;
  2. Hoi On Road from the junction with Hoi Hing Road until it meets Castle Peak Road (reserved for franchised buses only);
  3. Tai Lam Chung Road;
  4. slip roads leading from Tuen Mun Road to Sham Tseng; and
  5. all access roads leading to and from the affected area of Castle Peak Road mentioned above.

8. The Police, however, will make the necessary arrangements to provide access within the closed section of Castle Peak Road for emergency vehicles before, during, and after the fireworks display.

9. The Government will make best efforts to re-open the closed section of Castle Peak Road and its adjourning roads as soon as possible after the fireworks display but this is unlikely to occur much before midnight because of the need to disperse the crowds and clear rubbish left behind by the public on the closed roads.

II. Tuen Mun Road

10. One-lane on each side of Tuen Mun Road between Tai Lam and Hoi On Road will be designated as bus lanes from 4:00 pm onwards to facilitate movement of buses to and from the pick-up points on Castle Peak Road and to serve as a stacking area for buses (see details at para. 13). Road safety in the section of Tuen Mun Road between Hoi On Road and Siu Lam Interchange is a particular concern when the fireworks display is about to take place. Past experience shows that most drivers would slow down or even stop their vehicles to watch the fireworks display, thus causing potential hazards to themselves and other vehicles. To deal with this problem, we plan to regulate the traffic on Tuen Mun Road from 7:30 pm onwards with a view to completely stopping vehicular movements to ensure public safety until the completion of the fireworks display at 8:20 pm.

III. Tsing Yi

11. We shall avoid road closures on Tsing Yi Island as far as possible. However, Police may have to stop traffic on a section of Tsing Yi Road West between Ching Hong Road and Sai Tso Wan Road if the situation so warrants. An enhanced traffic police presence will be provided to ensure free flow of traffic, especially over the Tsing Yi Bridges.


12. The pedestrianized area of Castle Peak Road will be divided into the following zones :

  1. two pedestrianised zones : one from Castle Peak Road/Hoi On Road to Castle Peak Road/Sham Tsz Street (outside Garden Bakery) and another one from Ma Wan Carpark to Tai Lam Chung Weigh Station; and
  2. the stretch of road from Castle Peak Road/Sham Tsz Street to the Ma Wan Carpark will be kept for a bus loading area and pedestrian traffic will be regulated so as to avoid direct clash caused by people moving into the area and buses trying to get out after loading.

Public Transportation

13. Regular public transport services serving the Castle Peak Road areas will be maintained until closure of Castle Peak Road when the services will stop at the fringe of the closed areas, i.e. Hoi On Road, Sham Tseng Interchange, or Tai Lam Chung Weigh Station. The kaito service between Sham Tseng and Ma Wan will be maintained as far as possible.

14. As for crowd dispersal after the fireworks display, the Kowloon Motor Bus Company and Kowloon Canton Railway Corporation will provide 440 buses to run special services from designated boarding points on Castle Peak Road to either Tsuen Wan MTR Station or Tuen Mun Ferry Light Rail Transit (LRT) Terminus after the display. Designated embarkation points on Castle Peak Road will be the junction with Hoi On Road (where buses will go to Tsuen Wan MTR Station), Tai Lam Chung Weigh Station (where buses will go to Tuen Mun LRT Terminus only via Tuen Mun Road) and Castle Peak Road near Sham Tseng Interchange (where buses will go to either Tsuen Wan MTR Station or Tuen Mun LRT Terminus via Tuen Mun Road).

15. Having regard to site constraints and crowd control considerations (which impose a limit on the number of buses that could be made available for simultaneous boarding), it is estimated that buses can only carry 50,000 spectators within the first two hours to the mass transit systems after the display. To speed up the dispersal, the Kowloon-bound carriageway of Castle Peak Road from its junction with Hoi On Road to Tsuen Wan will be pedestrianized so that spectators can proceed on foot to the Tsuen Wan MTR Station (which is respectively 3 km and 8.5 km away from the two extremes of the closed area on Castle Peak Road and takes about two hours) if they so choose.

16. MTR and LRT services will be strengthened and service hours lengthened until all spectators are dispersed. Ferry services plying between Tsuen Wan and Central will also be reinforced, if necessary.

Marine Traffic

17. Because of the fireworks display and the congregation of boats in the neighbouring areas, the Ma Wan Channel will not be available for transit navigation between around 2:00 pm and 10:30 pm. Anchoring in the Ma Wan and Pun Shau Shek Anchorages will also not be allowed during these hours. Kap Shui Mun and Rambler Channels will remain available for transit navigation. Vessels intending to use the Rambler Channel, however, will be subject to the height restriction of 17 metres under the bridges. The Marine Department and Marine Police will ensure vessels wishing to view the fireworks do not enter the fireworks display area. Members of the public who wish to take their vessels to view the fireworks would have to station their vessels in the spectator boat area located to the south of the Tsing Ma Bridge and comply with the directions of the Marine Department and Marine Police launches. The section of fairway in between North of Tsing Yi and North of Ma Wan will have to closed between 7:45 pm and 8:30 pm so as to avoid potential hazards arising from vessel operators slowing down or stopping their vessels. Public piers and landing steps adjacent to the section of Castle Peak Road between Hoi On Road and Tai Lam Chung will not be available for vessels to berth, embark or disembark passengers (with exception of the Sham Tseng kaito service). Congestion at landing steps is expected to be heavy. This is likely to cause long delays for vessels wishing to pick up or drop off passengers.

18. Additionally Marine Police will be deployed along coastlines stretching from Tai Lam Chung through the western shoreline of Kowloon to the western tip of Hong Kong Island and back along the south shoreline of Lantau and Ma Wan Island.

Crowd Control

19. Sufficient police manpower would be deployed to guide the traffic flow and pedestrians. Where necessary, the Police may divert members of the public away as soon as spectators in an area has reached capacity to ensure that public safety is not compromised, particularly in the section of Castle Peak Road between Ting Kau and Sham Tseng and the beaches nearby where large crowds are envisaged.

20. Police manpower will also be enhanced at the Tuen Mun LRT Terminus, Tsuen Wan MTR Station, Tsuen Wan Ferry Pier and the bus pick-up points on Castle Peak Road and along Tuen Mun Road, and at Tsing Yi.

Impact on Public

21. Shops along Castle Peak Road can remain open for business as usual. Residents on the closed section of Castle Peak Road will not be able to drive in and out of their premises from late afternoon of 27 April to perhaps midnight. However, the Government would put in place public transport services which will terminate at the three bus pick-up points along Castle Peak Road (para. 13 above) when road closure is in force. Ma Wan residents will be affected if and when the kaito services are temporarily suspended.

22. Residents of Tuen Mun and Yuen Long will be affected if they take Tuen Mun Road where traffic flow will be temporarily stopped immediately before and during the fireworks. Resultant traffic congestion in West Kowloon and the New Territories, particularly in the Kwai Chung and Tsing Yi areas, is possible. Members of the public would be advised to avoid driving to these areas as far as practicable or take the Tolo Highway as an alternative route during the specific period.


23. We will consult Tsuen Wan, Kwai Tsing, Tuen Mun, Yuen Long, and Islands District Boards and the local communities representing Castle Peak Road residents on the preliminary proposal on the crowd control and public transportation arrangements in March and April and will finalise arrangements in the light of the exercise. The general public, in particular residents of these districts, will also be given advance notice of these arrangements nearer the time. They will be advised to avoid using the affected roads during the time of closure and traffic regulation. The public will be informed of a likely lengthy hold-up on Castle Peak Road after the fireworks. Advisory leaflets will also be issued to vessel operators.


24. The fireworks display, which will form part of the Lantau Link Opening Ceremony, will give the public a unique opportunity to share Hong Kong's joy in the completion of the Lantau Link which has become a new landmark of Hong Kong. The Government, in particular the Transport Department and the Police, will make best efforts to ensure public safety, to provide public transport services, and to minimize inconvenience to local residents arising from the traffic diversion and road closure. We will appeal to residents and the general public for a high degree of understanding and co-operation in making the finalized arrangements work.

New Airport Projects Co-ordination Office
March 1997

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