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Roads in New Territories

In the New Territories, the construction of new roads, apart from those serving Tsuen Wan, continued at a slow pace until the early 1970s when the new towns were built.

In 1967, the opportunity to link Sha Tin directly with Kowloon came with the need to build a water supply tunnel through the range of hills separating Kowloon and the New Territories. The Lion Rock Tunnel was designed to accommodate a two-lane road as well as three large water pipes. A second two-lane tunnel was subsequently built adjacent to the first and opened to traffic in 1978.

The Tsing Yi Bridge, which connects Tsing Yi Island with Kwai Chung and Tsuen Wan, was completed in 1974. The second Tsing Yi Bridge was constructed and opened to traffic in late 1987. The third Tsing Yi Bridge was constructed and opened to traffic in late 1997.

Tuen Mun Road was partially completed and opened to traffic in May 1978 to link up Tsuen Wan and Tuen Mun. It was fully completed in May 1983. The project provided a challenge to highway engineers since the route involved the construction of many bridges and culverts along terrain.

A 7km long dual two-lane carriageway, which is part of Route 9, links Sha Tin directly with Tsuen Wan via the Shing Mun Tunnel. The project was completed and opened to the public in 1990.

To cope with traffic generated as a result of the growth of new towns at Tai Po, Fanling and Yuen Long, together with the increasing cross-boundary traffic with Shenzhen, the construction of a high capacity trunk road, the New Territories Circular Road, commenced in 1980 to connect these new towns. The whole road was completed in January 1993.

The widening of Tolo Highway between Ma Liu Shui and Yuen Chau Tsai from dual three-lane to dual four-lane was completed in 2003. The widening of Tolo Highway/Fanling Highway between Yuen Chau Tsai and Tai Hang from dual three-lane to dual four-lane was completed in 2014.

Yuen Long Highway, completed in July 1993, provides a continuation of Route 9 from Tuen Mun to Yuen Long. To cope with increasing traffic, the highway was widened from a dual two-lane carriageway to a dual three-lane carriageway in March 2006.

To improve cross border traffic and relieve the road access to northwest New Territories, the Tai Lam Tunnel and its approaches of Route 3 commenced construction in 1995 and was completed in May 1998.

The Ting Kau Bridge forms the vital link between the Tai Lam Tunnel and Tsing Yi section of Route 3 and connects the western New Territories via Tuen Mun Road to the Lantau Link. The bridge and approach viaduct were opened to traffic in May 1998.

To cope with increasing traffic, the section of Castle Peak Road between Siu Lam and So Kwun Wat was widened to a dual two-lane carriageway in December 2000. Widening of the section between Tsuen Wan and Siu Lam was later completed in June 2007.

Tsing Yi North Coastal Road was completed in 2002. It provides a direct link of the Northwest Tsing Yi Interchange via Tsing Tsuen Road with Kwai Chung.

The construction of the new boundary bridge between Lok Ma Chau and Huanggang commenced in November 2003 and was completed in December 2004. The project provides additional dual two-lane to the existing cross boundary link to cope with the growing traffic.

The improved Tung Chung Road was opened to public use in February 2009. The original single-lane road has been improved to a single two-lane road in order to meet the traffic demand and to improve road safety.

Kong Sham Western Highway is a dual three-lane carriageway with a total length of about 5.4km, extending from Ngau Hom Shek in the north near the shoreline to Lam Tei in the south. The majority of the Kong Sham Western Highway is in the form of viaducts. The road was opened to public use in July 2007.

The Shenzhen Bay Bridge is an additional cross boundary link from Shenzhen to join up with Kong Sham Western Highway on the Hong Kong side. It is a 5.5km dual three-lane carriageway (Hong Kong section is 3.5km whereas the Shenzhen section is 2km). This crossing alleviates the pressure on the existing crossings, enhance the trade between Hong Kong and Southern China, and facilitates further economic development in areas such as finance, logistics and tourism. The Shenzhen Bay Bridge was opened to traffic in July 2007.

Route 8 is a trunk road linking Lantau Island and Sha Tin. The North Lantau Highway and Lantau Link completed in 1997 form part of this route. The section between Cheung Sha Wan and Sha Tin (including Eagle’s Nest Tunnel and Sha Tin Heights Tunnel) was commissioned in March 2008. The remaining section between Tsing Yi and Cheung Sha Wan (including Nam Wan Tunnel and the Stonecutters Bridge) was also fully opened to traffic in 2009.