Urban Rehabilitation & Redevelopment in Hong Kong: Facilitating Private Owners' Participation through the Introduction of Statutory and Non-statutory Measures

Student thesis: Master's Thesis

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Awarding Institution
  • Lei CHEN (Supervisor)
Award date29 Sept 2017


Urban redevelopment in Hong Kong is not keeping pace with urban decay, and the HK URA does not appear to be the solution to this problem, given the limited success of top-down approach to urban renewal in Hong Kong, and the pressing need for the physical aspect of urban renewal (i.e. urban rehabilitation and urban redevelopment),

Despite numerous piecemeal amendments to the Building Management Ordinance (BMO), mandatory management and maintenance of buildings is still not provided for in the BMO (2007), and the pre-existence and pre-dominance of the Deed of Mutual Covenant (DMC) system hampers building management and maintenance. Although Hong Kong has introduced and amended the Land (Compulsory Sale for Redevelopment) Ordinance, the revised thresholds for compulsory sale are still remarkably high, given that the common state of building neglect in Hong Kong has already rendered many buildings 30 years or more of age unsafe. The current legal framework in Hong Kong is therefore inadequate to facilitate proper private owners’ participation and co-ordination in building management and maintenance, rehabilitation and redevelopment.

The institutions of English Commonhold and Singapore Strata Title Systems were analysed making use of the three-level decision making system and adapting Wang Pugu’s preconditions for the respective decision levels (i.e. constitutional, collective choice and operational). Comparative analysis of the English Commonhold and Singapore Strata Title systems against the current HK system confirmed that aspects of the Singapore Strata Title system and English Commonhold system could be adopted into the current Hong Kong system, including but not limited to the mandatory formation of owners’ corporations.

As property-related issues are often contentious topics in Hong Kong, and given the difficulty of introducing legislative amendments to the BMO and Land (Compulsory Sale for Redevelopment) Ordinance, other supplementary statutory and non-statutory measures to facilitate private owners’ participation in urban rehabilitation and urban redevelopment have also been suggested.