Resilient cities need robust infrastructure in response to inner-city flood risks due to climate change. As an integral component of Hong Kong’s urban flood prevention master plan, the Lai Chi Kok Drainage Tunnel is part of the overall flood control strategy for West Kowloon.

The Lai Chi Kok Drainage Tunnel (LCKDT) project reinforces the flood protection capability in Northwest Kowloon, Hong Kong. The contract began on site in 2008 and included the building of a 1.2-kilometer (0.75-miles) main branch, a 2.5-kilometer (1.55-miles) branch tunnel, six intakes, a stilling basin and an outfall.

AECOM was responsible for detailed design, preparation of prequalification and tender documents, construction supervision, and contract management for the project.

Designed to withstand rainstorms with a return period of one in 50 years, the LCKDT project is one of the major strategic flood prevention schemes for the region implemented by the Drainage Services Department of the Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The new tunnel lessens the burden on existing urban area drainage systems by first intercepting surface runoff from the rural upstream catchment via a number of intakes to a branch tunnel. The flow then bypasses busiest residential districts of Sham Shui Po, Cheung Sha Wan and Lai Chi Kok, through hard rock and mixed ground conditions, and running close to existing water mains and sensitive structures a main tunnel about 45 meters (147 feet) below ground and is finally discharged to Victoria Harbour through a riser outfall.

As a key component of and jointly with other components of Hong Kong’s urban flood control drainage system, the project is collectively recognized by the 12th Jeme Tien Yow Award, China’s highest recognition of engineering excellence, in 2014.