Why Lantau needs improved transportation

The barge crash in October that saw the Kap Shui Mun Bridge closed for two hours has led to questions about how easily Lantau can be cut off from the rest of Hong Kong.

The incident caused chaos for commuters, with no road or MTR access to the airport and many having to come through Discovery Bay to get to the airport. The fact that the Lantau Link is the only land route accessing Lantau really hit home.

Here at AsiaWorld-Expo (AWE), we were thankful that one of our large-scale events, attracting over 30,000 visitors, had concluded a few days earlier. If the incident had happened during the show, it would have caused great inconvenience to the participants and exhibitors, and could detrimentally have affected our industry.

It’s clear that Lantau needs an improved transport network to connect it with the rest of the world. To tie in with the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, the government plans to have the Tuen Mun – Chek Lap Kok Link in place by 2018, and is looking into creating Route 11, a new road connecting northern Lantau and Yuen Long.

While we are waiting for these additional roads to open, precautionary measures need to be put in place to limit the likelihood of Lantau Link closure. The efficiency of (contingency) ferry services for residents and tourists moving to and from the airport also needs to be improved.

In the near future, Lantau will be transformed into a metropolis comprising tourism, commerce, retail, hotels, a MICE EXPOtainment industry and green tourism. The authorities need to formulate a set of well-rounded, specific and effective transport strategies to keep up with the island’s development.

The Lantau Development Alliance (LaDA) is a group of local organisations and enterprises on Lantau that have come together to promote the social and economic development of the island. Visit www.lantau-da.com.hk.

Contributed by Lantau Development Alliance