Buildings Department sets up task force to speed up approval of major projects
Mar 16, 2023
Hong Kong
By   Wen Wei Po 
  • City News
  • Transaction Quotes
  • Buildings Department
  • Large Private Residential Projects
  • Property Approval
Abstract: In a continuing effort to speed up the development process, the Buildings Department (BD) announced yesterday that it has set up a dedicated approval team and will reduce the number of information items required for the first submission of general building plans.

The establishment of the task force is one of the initiatives in the 2022 Policy Address to speed up and improve efficiency.


A spokesman for the Buildings Department said that for large-scale private residential projects with 500 or more units, the seven task forces will actively assist by providing facilitation measures at an early stage of the project and senior staff will be involved in due course.


The Department aims to have about 80% of general building plans approved at the time of first or second submission, and encourages applicants to contact the task forces early, even before submitting plans, to identify issues of concern and explore possible options.

The facilitation measures include pre-submission meetings with the applicants; assistance in drawing up suitable design proposals that meet the requirements of the Buildings Ordinance and its subsidiary legislation; and liaison with other government departments to resolve issues critical to the development, such as those relating to the determination of site classification and the extent of public pedestrian access.


The Buildings Department will issue a revised Practice Note later this month, which will significantly reduce the number of items of information required for the first submission of general building plan applications by about 30 per cent, from about 140 to less than 100.


The spokesman added that the reduction in the number of details required for the application would save resources and time for the applicant in preparing the first submission of general building plans and avoid wasted efforts in revising the building design. By obtaining the first approval of the general building plans more quickly, applicants can further develop their designs and commence works as early as possible, thus speeding up the entire development process.