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Northern Metropolis


  • As a new engine for the future development of Hong Kong, the Northern Metropolis will inject new economic impetus into Hong Kong. In particular, by providing new land for development of innovation and technology (I&T) industry, the Northern Metropolis can support Hong Kong to become an international I&T centre under the new industrial pattern of “South-North dual engine (finance-I&T)”.
  • The Northern Metropolis is one of the main sources of future housing land supply, integrating quality life, industry development, culture and leisure, and promoting a better home-job balance and green living.
  • The Northern Metropolis is close to Shenzhen's metropolitan core and the base of I&T industry with the greatest development momentum, and having seven land-based boundary control points, forging an essential platform for our cooperation with other Greater Bay Area cities.
  • The entire Northern Metropolis will eventually develop as a metropolitan with a residential population of about 2.5 million and providing about 650 000 jobs.

Basic Information

  • The Northern Metropolis covers the Yuen Long District and North District, including new towns in Tin Shui Wai, Yuen Long and Fanling/Sheung Shui, various New Development Areas in different planning and development stages and their neighboring areas, with a total area of 30 000 hectares (about one third of the total area of Hong Kong).
  • The existing population and jobs in Yuen Long District and North District are about 980 000 and 134 000 respectively.
  • The Government is actively taking forward the development of the Northern Metropolis. Large New Development Areas such as Kwu Tung North/Fanling North, Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen and Yuen Long South as well as the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation and Technology Park in the Loop are under construction. Also, relevant planning studies for new land development projects, including San Tin Technopole, New Territories North New Town and Lo Wu/Man Kan To, Ngau Tam Mei, Lau Fau Shan/Tsim Bei Tsui/Pak Nai areas and Ma Tso Lung area, are in progress.

Transport Infrastructure

  • The Transport and Logistic Bureau promulgated the "Hong Kong Major Transport Infrastructure Development Blueprint" in December 2023, which formulates a planning framework for the city's future transport infrastructure development, and outlines the strategic railway and major road networks which can meet the transport and logistics demand up to 2046 and beyond.
  • It includes a series of local and cross-boundary transport infrastructure projects to support the development of the Northern Metropolis, including the Northern Link, the Northern Link Spur Line, the Northern Link Eastern Extension, the Northeast New Territories Line, the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Western Rail Link (Hung Shui Kiu – Qianhai), Hung Shui Kiu Station of Tuen Ma Line, the Central Rail Link, the Northern Metropolis Highway, Route 11 (section between Yuen Long and North Lantau), the Tsing Yi–Lantau Link, the Widening of Yuen Long Highway (section between Lam Tei and Tong Yan San Tsuen), the Tuen Mun Bypass and the Shatin Bypass, etc.
  • Upon the progressive commissioning of the major transport infrastructure projects, the major transport infrastructure network will extend to various New Development Areas (NDAs) in the area, enhancing the connectivity between these areas with the Mainland, as well as other parts of Hong Kong, improving the overall traffic conditions in the Northern Metropolis. It will enable the public to easily access various land-based boundary control points (BCPs) via major roads and railways, boosting the connectivity and synergy effect among these BCPs as well as the benefits of the cross-boundary infrastructure.
  • Meanwhile, the improved major transport infrastructure network will also enhance the connection between the Northern Metropolis and the Harbour Metropolis, forming new transport corridors between the two metropolises in the east, central and west of Hong Kong and creating sufficient capacity to meet the north-south transport and logistics demand arising from developments.

Learn more about Transport Infrastructure

Nature Conservation and Sustainability

  • While developing housing and economic land to create development capacity, we will also enhance the environmental capacity in the Northern Metropolis.
  • The Northern Metropolis has diverse habitats, such as large areas of wetlands, fish ponds, marshes, reedbeds and mangroves in its west. The area covering mangroves, wetlands and fish ponds in Mai Po and Inner Deep Bay, in particular, are listed as a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention, and is a priority ecological environment for conservation in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and even in Southern China. Through proactive conservation and restoration, the ecological values and biodiversity of wetlands in the Northern Metropolis could be enhanced, making it a unique metropolis featuring “Co-existence of Development and Conservation”.
  • To achieve the goal of sustainable communities and carbon neutrality in the long run, smart, green, and resilient strategies will be adopted for the Northern Metropolis, formulating measures in three aspects, namely planning and urban design, infrastructure systems, and mobility. For example, formulating appropriate land use planning, building layout and green building design; incorporating the “sponge city” function and providing facilities such as district cooling system, common utility enclosure, etc.; and using railways as the backbone of sustainable transport as well as improving pedestrian and cycling networks to encourage the use of green transportation.

Implementation Mode

  • The Government will adopt the "Enhanced Conventional New Town Approach" (ECNTA) to implement the various New Development Areas (NDAs) in the Northern Metropolis. Under this government-led development approach, the Government will, as a general principle, resume and clear all the private land planned for developments, before allocating the land for various purposes, including disposal of land for private developments. Prior to the resumption and clearance of land, the Government may allow in-situ land exchange applications from owners of sites earmarked for private developments if they meet certain criteria and conditions. If the land exchange applications fall through, the land will be resumed by the Government, and disposed of through public tender or other means.
  • The Government has announced the revised in-situ land exchange arrangements under ECNTA on 28 December 2023. For details, please refer to the Lands Administration Office (LAO) Practice Note No. 13/2023 (click here), relevant press release (click here) and Legislative Council Brief (click here). In general, applicants should note the following requirements :

    • Sites open for in-situ land exchange application : In-situ land exchange under ECNTA is only applicable to sites earmarked for private developments within an NDA, and may include sites for development of residential, commercial, industrial and privately-run community or welfare facilities. The specific sites that are open for application for in-situ land exchange within the individual NDAs will be determined by the Government taking into account relevant policy considerations. The Lands Department (LandsD) will issue Practice Notes and announce sites open for application at an opportune time;
    • Application Requirements and Criteria : All in-situ land exchange applications have to fulfil requirements and criteria set out by the Government, which may include requirements on the size/shape and actual use(s) of the in-situ land exchange sites, as well as requirements to construct public facilities as required by the Government, and to provide compensation and/or rehousing to affected occupant(s), etc.. For the relevant requirements and criteria, please refer to LAO Practice Note No. 13/2023.

      In the revised arrangements announced on 28 December 2023, the Government has also announced that if an applicant has acquired 90% or more of all private land within a designated development site, the Government may at its discretion to grant the remaining minority third-party land to the applicant for developing the whole site in order to facilitate more land exchange applications of better scale and layout. Under this arrangement, the applicant will be required to pay full market premium for the development site (including the minority third-party land), and construct public facilities as specified by the Government;
    • Application Deadline : All in-situ land exchange applications under the ECNTA have to completed within a time limit as determined by the Government. If the in-situ and exchange applications could not be completed within the specified deadlines, the Government will proceed to resume the relevant land.
  • The Government will timely announce the detailed in-situ land exchange arrangements for the individual NDAs. Please see below the NDAs where detailed in-situ land exchange arrangements have been announced :

    • Kwu Tung North/Fanling North NDA : Deadline for in-situ land exchange application has expired
      [Please click here for the relevant Practice Note No. 1/2022; and click here for the summary of land exchange applications accepted for further processing]
    • Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen NDA : Currently open for in-situ land exchange with deadline by 30 April 2024
      [Please click here for the relevant Practice Note No. 1/2024; and click here for the distribution of sites open for in-situ land exchange application]
    • Other NDAs : The Government will issue the relevant Practice Notes at an opportune time, which will be uploaded onto the LandsD's website and updated on this page when available.
  • For enquiries on the arrangement of in-situ land exchange application under ECNTA, please contact the LandsD at 2231 3294.
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