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Editorial : Too many myths about brownfield development

【明報專訊】OF the eight prioritised options shortlisted by the Task Force on Land Supply to resolve the land shortage problem, brownfield development is endorsed by 83% of Hong Kong people. The brownfield problem is a consequence of the government's thoughtless planning of land development. For the sake of proper utilisation of land and improving the rural environment, the government must grasp the nettle to overcome the myriad of irregularities. That said, brownfield sites are certainly not a panacea for land shortage. There is no painless option for increasing land supply. Many people understand that the land problem is imminent. But due to ideological reasons or self-interest, they have rejected land reclamation and other options. As a result, brownfield development has become the "highest common factor" — the option backed by the most people, but the bunch of operational problems and effects in real practice is largely ignored. There are too many myths in the current social perception of the brownfield issue. Overestimating the "curing effect" of brownfield development is unfavourable for finding the right antidote, which is a curse rather than a blessing to overcoming the land crisis.

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