Update on Infrastructure Developments in Hong Kong
Posted by Richard Poulter, Construction Recruitment Director, Hong Kong on Monday, May 15, 2023
Hong Kong never sleeps and this is true of its uncompromising infrastructure program which will keep construction engineers, project managers and quantity surveyors busy for decades to come.
In this post, I will take a look at two major development programs in the planning together with an update on “live” construction projects within rail, road and renewable energy that together constitute fantastic job and career opportunities for construction professionals. I will conclude by mentioning the valuable work of the Hong Kong Construction Industry Council & an exciting job vacancy we are working with them on currently.
The Northern Metropolis is a vast swathe of development with a target to provide 900,000 homes and generate 650,000 jobs by integrating the mature new towns of Yuen Long, Tin Shu Wai, Sheung Shui and Fanling as well as other towns in various stages of development to create an economic belt linking Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area of mainland China. The plan seeks to create a most vibrant district of 300 square kilometers in Hong Kong’s urban development and population growth.
HK$100 billion will be needed to develop sustainable infrastructure required in terms of land, housing and transportation. Planning Engineers will certainly be in high demand to program this development. Planners and other construction professionals please register your CV with us to enable us to bear you in mind when the job vacancies go live!
Lantau tomorrow is an evolving vision, now known as the Kau Yi Chau Artificial Islands, with bold plans to develop artificial islands to the immediate east of Peng Chau and Hei Ling Chau, to create a new urban centre to address Hong Kong’s land supply and housing crisis. Costing nearly HK$600 billion, the project has been met with numerous economic and environmental challenges although it does appear that the development is gaining momentum.
Other Rail Development Projects
Civil Engineering and rail recruitment in Hong Kong continues to flourish as construction contractor jobs as well as consultant design jobs proliferate the industry. We reported in 2021 on a number of important high value rail projects in the planning and design stage and we're excited to update that they are moving ahead with construction commencing within the coming months.
The New Tung Chung Extension in Lantau, Hong Kong
This significant rail construction extension project divided into 3 parts, will be built to better serve the existing Tung Chung community and future Tung Chung New Town with accessibility and connectivity to Hong Kong. This project comprises an extension to the Tung Chung line to a new terminal station at Tung Chung West; the new Tung Chung East station between Tung Chung and Sunny Bay; and the eastward extension of the Airport Railway overrun tunnel at Hong Kong Station. The project will represent a major geotechnical and environmental challenge. The contracts are on the cusp of being awarded right now and the estimated project cost is around HK$19 Billion. Tunneling engineers, foundation engineers and of course quantity surveyors and Health and Safety professionals will no doubt be in high demand to deliver these challenging projects.
Tsuen Mun Extension in the New Territories, Hong Kong
Hong Kong’s West Rail will be extended by 2.4 km and a new western terminus at Tsuen Mun South installed, the alignment of which will be above ground on a viaduct and which will serve passengers using the Tsuen Mun Ferry Pier. Construction will start this year with a target price tag of HK$11+ Billion.
The Tuen Ma Line as it is now renamed will be the longest MTR line at 56 km with 27 stations. Hong Kong construction companies will certainly be lining up to tender for a slice of this complex geotechnically challenging community project.
Northern Link (NOL), New Territories, Hong Kong
This 10.7km rail project will connect Hong Kong’s West Rail and East Rail lines.
Phase 1 will see the development of a new station at Kwu Tung connecting the Lok Ma Chau spur on the East Rail line commencing construction in 2024 with target completion in 2027. Phase 2 will see a line between Kwu Tung and the existing Kam Sheung Road station via 3 new intermediate stations with construction starting next year and scheduled for completion in 2034.
Siu Ho Wan Depot, New Territories, Hong Kong
Hong Kong’s land supply shortage and ongoing housing crisis provides for innovative solutions! The rail depot at Siu Ho Wan will be extensively “re-modelled” to provide topside development for a staggering 20,000 residential housing units.
Meticulously planned enabling works are needed to maintain live rail lines during all construction phases. Construction will commence this year and progress over the next 20 years with an estimated cost of HK$35 billion.
Hong Kong Road Projects
There are a plethora of major road and highway infrastructure projects ongoing including the Cross Bay Link in Tsung Kwan O, the TKO Lam Tin tunnel, the widening of Tai Po Road and the Central Kowloon Route. All these projects are demanding and technically challenging and offer Civil Engineers, Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Project Managers and Planning Engineers fantastic opportunities!
Renewable Energy Projects
Mainland China is currently embracing , tide, solar, wind and wave to tackle climate change and its acute air pollution. However, Hong Kong struggles to create the same momentum with electricity firms lacking incentives to go green. That said, China Light and Power CLP, currently providing Hong Kong with 80% if its power needs, is determined to develop sustainable solutions and is collaborating with its neighbours to develop renewable energy projects.
Maxim is currently on the look out for a client side Manager with significant experience in development of renewable energy projects and invites suitably qualified candidates to apply.
Construction Industry Council (CIC)
The shear scale and volume of construction projects ongoing and planned present huge challenges to the industry with an ageing workforce and an apparent lack of interest from young people to forge a career in construction. In this context, the work of the Construction Industry Council has never been more critical. Established in 2007 to improve the quality and competitiveness of the construction industry and promote good practices.
The CIC acts as a communications conduit between the industry and government and is empowered to formulate codes of conduct, share industry knowledge, reflect the industry’s needs, improve labour relations, promote health & safety and sustainable construction and elevate the standards and skills of the industry via funding research and organising vocational training.
Maxim has been working closely with CIC for some time now to identify high caliber candidates for various senior appointments. The CIC Institute of Construction is currently seeking a Director and suitable applicants are invited to apply.
Hong Kong remains an exciting hub for construction projects that are underway being built, and the future remains bright with a range of new projects coming to market and starting on site soon.
Please get in touch with your CV if you are based in Hong Kong or are interested in relocating to work in Hong Kong.