Decade-long suspended projects cause HCMC headache

By Vu Pham, Huong Dung
Tue, September 13, 2022 | 9:52 am GTM+7

Ho Chi Minh City, the southern metropolis of Vietnam, has seen a series of projects delayed for decades, affecting the lives of residents waiting to be relocated.

The Binh Quoi-Thanh Da Urban Area project site in Binh Thanh district, HCMC. Photo courtesy of Labor newspaper.

The Binh Quoi-Thanh Da Urban Area project site in Binh Thanh district, HCMC. Photo courtesy of Labor newspaper.

Among those is the Binh Quoi-Thanh Da Urban Area project in Binh Thanh district, approved in 1992 on an area of 426 hectares and with a population of 45,000.

Twelve years later, the project was transferred to Saigon Construction Corporation for implementation. In June 2005, the municipal Department of Planning and Architecture submitted to the city People's Committee a report on detailed planning for Binh Quoi- Thanh Da peninsula. In early 2006, HCMC determined that the urban area would house about 80,000 people.

In 2010, the people's committee revoked the investment license as Saigon Construction Corporation was incapable of carrying out the project. Later, many investors expressed their desire to implement this project, but then gave up due to problems regarding compensation for site clearance.

The Binh Quoi-Thanh Da Urban Area was initially expected to be a modern ecological locality, but after three decades, remains on paper. People can only “shake their heads” to show their disappointment, saying that most likely, they would not see any changes here for the rest of their lives.

A project on the urban embellishment of the Ma Lang area (Nguyen Cu Trinh quadrangle) in the center of District 1 also fell into a deadlock due to site clearance difficulties over the past 20 years.

In 2000, Saigon Real Estate Corporation was assigned as investor, but was unable to implement the project. In 2007, HCMC planned to assign another firm to invest in it. However, so far, no plans have been realised.

The Ma Lang area includes three residential sites in Nguyen Cu Trinh ward, with 1,424 households. Under the planning, the area to be recovered is 68,500 square meters, with VND5 trillion ($212.5 million) for site clearance compensation estimated in 2009. However, compensation costs have been soaring due to skyrocketing house and land prices in HCMC in recent years.

Considered one of the breakthrough strategies of HCMC's urban renovation and embellishment, with the goal of building a complex featuring many works with different functions, expectations for the Ma Lang area have been high. However, the plan remains unfeasible, with locals living in misery.

Another project also famous for its long-term suspension is the Tay Bac (Northwest) Urban Area in Hoc Mon and Cu Chi districts, approved by the Prime Minister in 1998.

It was oriented to become one of the satellite urban areas located in the northwest of the city as well as a scientific, financial, services and commercial hub of the southern metropolis. The suspended planning has affected 60,000 people over an extended period.

About 20 years ago, the project to build a 6,000-hectare urban area painted a bright prospect for local people. However, it remains on paper despite efforts to call for investment. Locals cannot repair, sell or transfer their houses even though their needs are urgent.

There are many other projects in the same situation including Binh Trieu Station in Thu Duc city, Saigon Safari, Hung Long University Village, and Xuyen Tam Canal Upgrading.

At the sixth meeting of the municipal People's Council in early July, local voters proposed the authorities resolutely revoke and cross out “suspended” projects and planning schemes to safeguard the interest of residents.

At a press conference on the city’s socio-economic performance in the first five months this year, Vo Cong Luc, an official from the municipal Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said HCMC had dealt with 169 out of 616 delayed projects. Of this, 108 had their land use plans cancelled.

He added that in the coming time, the department would review projects that have registered for land use for three years but are yet to be implemented on schedule to report to the municipal People’s Committee.

As the largest city in the country, HCMC is set to become a smart urban area and modern industrial and service hub that acts as a driving force for the southern key economic region by 2025. The city's average annual gross regional domestic product (GRDP) per capita is estimated at $8,500 then.

Comments (0)
  • Read More
AES gets ministerial nod for 2,250 MW LNG power project in Binh Thuan

AES gets ministerial nod for 2,250 MW LNG power project in Binh Thuan

American energy corporation AES has received in-principle approval from the Ministry of Industry and Trade for its VND50,432 billion ($2.11 billion) Son My 2 LNG-to-power project in the south-central province of Binh Thuan.

Energy - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 9:24 pm GTM+7

Coro Energy operates pilot rooftop solar power project in Vietnam

Coro Energy operates pilot rooftop solar power project in Vietnam

Coro Energy has completed commissioning of its Vietnam rooftop solar pilot project, the UK-based energy firm announced Friday.

Energy - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 6:59 pm GTM+7

VN-Index pulls one back after five losing sessions

VN-Index pulls one back after five losing sessions

Vietnam’s benchmark VN-Index reversed a consecutive five session decline with a six-point gain Friday to close at 1,132 points.

Finance - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 6:30 pm GTM+7

Vietnam’s GDP growth to keep driving southern industrial property market: report

Vietnam’s GDP growth to keep driving southern industrial property market: report

The industrial and logistics market in Ho Chi Minh City, Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Long An, and Ba Ria-Vung Tau will continue to grow in 2022-2023 thanks to Vietnam’s resilient economic expansion, according to Cushman and Wakefield.

Real Estate - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 3:32 pm GTM+7

Vietnam needs bonded warehouses for US cotton imports

Vietnam needs bonded warehouses for US cotton imports

Building a Vietnam bonded warehouse for U.S. cotton would benefit both countries, Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (Vinatas) chairman Vu Duc Giang said Friday.

Industries - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 3:19 pm GTM+7

Thai giant Central Retail eyes mall investment in Binh Thuan

Thai giant Central Retail eyes mall investment in Binh Thuan

Thailand's Central Retail is seeking opportunities to build malls and supermarkets in Binh Thuan province.

Industries - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 3:05 pm GTM+7

Vietnam Q3 unemployment lowest in 3 years

Vietnam Q3 unemployment lowest in 3 years

Vietnam's unemployment rate dropped 1.7 percentage points year-on-year to 2.28% in the third quarter, the lowest since 2020.

Economy - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 11:38 am GTM+7

Looking up HCMC’s highest high-end homes

Looking up HCMC’s highest high-end homes

Housing projects like The River Thu Thiem, Lumière Riverside, Grand Marina Saigon, and The Opera Residence are home to the most expensive penthouses in Ho Chi Minh City.

Real Estate - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 9:36 am GTM+7

VAFIE helps boost cooperation between Vietnam, India firms

VAFIE helps boost cooperation between Vietnam, India firms

Invest Global, an investment consultancy under the Vietnam Association of Foreign-Invested Enterprises (VAFIE), and a delegation of 15 Indian businesses have signed an agreement on boosting investment cooperation between the two countries.

Industries - Fri, September 30, 2022 | 8:05 am GTM+7

US dollar scales record high peak of VND24,000

US dollar scales record high peak of VND24,000

The exchange rate at Vietnamese commercial banks crossed VND24,000 per dollar Thursday, reaching a new peak that it had not scaled before.

Banking - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 9:45 pm GTM+7

Proptech firm Levitate makes its debut in Vietnam

Proptech firm Levitate makes its debut in Vietnam

Singapore-headquartered housing development platform Levitate has made Vietnam its debut market, giving consumers in the country more creative input when buying their own home.

Real Estate - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 9:19 pm GTM+7

VN-Index drops for fifth consecutive day despite strong economic data

VN-Index drops for fifth consecutive day despite strong economic data

Vietnam’s benchmark VN-Index dropped 17.55 points Thursday to 1,126.07, despite newly-released data showing the country’s nine-month GDP growth hitting 8.83%, a record high in 12 years.

Finance - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 5:18 pm GTM+7

Steel giant Hoa Phat starts operating $42 mln home appliance factory

Steel giant Hoa Phat starts operating $42 mln home appliance factory

Hoa Phat Group has begun production at its new home appliance factory worth VND1,000 billion ($42 million) in Ha Nam province.

Industries - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 4:28 pm GTM+7

Four major markets spend $27 billion importing phones, components from Vietnam

Four major markets spend $27 billion importing phones, components from Vietnam

The U.S., EU, China and South Korea imported nearly $27 billion worth of phones and components from Vietnam in the first eight months of the year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Economy - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 4:06 pm GTM+7

Hai Phong aims to attract $15 billion in FDI for 2020-2025

Hai Phong aims to attract $15 billion in FDI for 2020-2025

The northern port city of Hai Phong seeks to build 15 more industrial parks totaling 6,200 hectares to attract $15 billion in foreign direct investment in 2020-2025.

Industries - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 3:13 pm GTM+7

Viettel picks Taiwan’s UfiSpace for massive 5G roll out

Viettel picks Taiwan’s UfiSpace for massive 5G roll out

Vietnamese tech giant Viettel has selected Taiwanese 5G solutions supplier UfiSpace to jointly deploy disaggregated cell site gateways for Viettel’s massive 5G rollout in Vietnam.

Industries - Thu, September 29, 2022 | 2:27 pm GTM+7