The Chief Executive in Council has given approval for the Government to invite the MTR Corporation Limited (MTRCL) to proceed with the detailed planning and design of the Tuen Mun South (TMS) Extension project. The Transport & Housing Bureau made the announcement on May 29, noting that the extension is one of the seven recommended railway schemes in the Railway Development Strategy 2014, which will extend the West Rail Line from Tuen Mun Station southwards by about 2.4 km.
In addition to a new TMS Station to be provided near Tuen Mun Ferry, there will also be an intermediate station in Tuen Mun Area 16 (A16) to unlock the area's development potential. The extension largely runs along the Tuen Mun River and will improve railway access to the community south of the current Tuen Mun town centre (near Wu King Estate, Siu Hei Court and Yuet Wu Villa) and connectivity to Tuen Mun Ferry Pier. The area near Tuen Mun Ferry Pier is one of the major residential areas in the district, which has approximately 60,000 residents within the 500-metre catchment of the TMS Station, while there are about 49,000 residents living within the 500-metre catchment area around the proposed A16 Station.
The bureau said: "The TMS Extension with the A16 Station will offer an alternative commuting choice to the residents in the vicinity and divert more commuters to rail-based transport, which may help relieve the congestion of the existing roads. Furthermore, the provision of the proposed A16 Station is essential for unleashing the potential for residential development at the A16 site and helps increase the housing supply. It is estimated that the TMS Extension will save the public a cumulative total of about 300 million hours of commuting time over 50 years of operation.”
The economic benefits of the TMS Extension are estimated to be about $28 billion in 2015 prices, the bureau added. The Government will identify sites to reprovision the Tuen Mun Swimming Pool and the Tuen Mun Community Green Station, which will be affected by the project. It will further negotiate with the MTRCL on the funding arrangement of the project, which is expected to start construction in 2023 for completion in 2030.