Smart and Green Mass Transit System Unveiled in Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen New Development Area and Adjacent Areas

Hong Kong

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Introducing Smart and Green Mass Transit System (SGMTS) in Northern Metropolis’ New Development Area

Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen (HSK/HT) New Development Area (NDA) represents a new generation of urban development within Hong Kong’s Northern Metropolis and is expected to house a population of about 184,000. To fulfil its position as a next-generation new town, the HSK/HT NDA requires a modern green public transport network. The green road-based mode transit such as green bus system and trackless trams was recommended as an environmentally friendly transit system to serve the NDA. This strategic transit system is designed to enhance local connectivity and accessibility, thereby driving economic growth and regional development sustainably.

In collaboration with the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) of HKSAR, AECOM was entrusted with developing the SGMTS in the HSK/HT NDA and adjacent areas. The primary objective was to establish an integrated Green Transport Corridor (GTC), featuring green transit system, pedestrian walkways, and cycle tracks, all seamlessly integrated with key transport interchanges and MTR stations. The GTC promotes walkability, cycling, and a range of public transport alternatives.

Vision for smart and green mobility

AECOM’s scope of work included assessing the feasibility of expanding the SGMTS to adjacent areas, such as Yuen Long South Development, Tin Shui Wai New Town and Yuen Long New Town, ensuring compatibility with existing light rail transit. We evaluated different green transit modes, both road-based and rail-based, to identify the optimal solution for the GTC, ultimately recommending a road-based approach. Marketing-sounding, procurement methods, and preliminary engineering designs were also part of the process, enabling CEDD reach decisions on the SGMTS and formulate strategies to take the recommended SGMTS Scheme to the subsequent design and construction stages.

The SGMTS, in its nascent stages within Hong Kong, is designed to address urban congestion and transit challenges through electric propulsion, zero emissions, and a transition to cleaner energy. The systems embody innovation with a focus on energy efficiency, safety, comfort, and cost-effectiveness. They leverage automation and technology to elevate passenger experience, including features like ticketless travel and advanced route planning with real-time information.

Source: Hong Kong Major Transport Infrastructure Development Blueprint

Considerations in selecting the suitable green transportation mode

Systems such as BYD SkyShuttle, automated rapid transit (ART) and green bus systems are under consideration in Hong Kong and represent a significant step forward in our transit landscape. The SGMTS’ success hinges on integration of its components, which include vehicles tailored to complement the system’s overall characteristics—transport demand, infrastructure, stations, service plans, intelligent transport system applications and fare collection.

The SGMTS selection involved a two-step assessment. The initial screening filtered out unsuitable options, retaining potential transit modes for further detailed assessment. It utilized key performance indicators such as capacity, reliability, efficiency, technical compatibility, and sustainability. A subsequent detailed evaluation of the remaining options then examined engineering, environmental, and operational feasibility, along with financial implications.

The planned SGMTS network will traverse the 16-kilometer GTC, serving the HSK/HT NDA and Yuen Long South Development. It will ensure connectivity with key transit nodes, which include the Tuen Ma Line’s Hung Shui Kiu Station, Tin Shui Wai Station, the Light Rail’s Nai Wai Stop, and Chung Fu Stop, alongside existing and proposed public transport interchanges. To foster a culture of cycling and healthy living, bicycle parking spaces will be strategically placed near SGMTS stations. This integration of cycling with public transit is aimed at facilitating healthier travel options while mitigating urban congestion and air pollution.

To align with the phased development of HSK/HT NDA and Yuen Long South Development, SMGTS will be commissioned in phases. Visit here for more details about the project and our recommendations.

Beyond transportation in the Hung Shui Kiu New/Ha Tsuen Development Area

In addition to this project, AECOM is engaged in a variety of initiatives across multiple sectors within this NDA. These projects encompass the design and construction of the Hung Shui Kiu Effluent Polishing Plant, engineering feasibility study for developments in Tin Shui Wai Area, and site formation and infrastructural works for public housing development at Ping Shan South (Yuen Long), Lam Tei North and Nai Wai (Tuen Mun), among others.

Source: Civil Engineering and Development Department