Infrastructure Developments in Ho Chi Minh City
Planned metro lines for Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh City is currently the largest and fastest growing city in Vietnam. With continued construction of apartment projects, foreign investment and overall economic growth, Saigon, as it is commonly known, is attracting locals and foreigners alike.
As it stands, Ho Chi Minh City has a population of about 8,426,000, with estimates that over the next 3 years, the population of Ho Chi Minh City will grow at a rate of 9.1%. Such a high population also means that Saigon is the most densely populated city in Vietnam with about 4,000 inhabitants per square kilometer.
With such a high density, Ho Chi Minh City has begun to experience traffic congestions more regularly, especially around District 1. Driving into the CBD during peak hours or on the weekend is quite a hassle with the amount of cars and motorbikes causing a very slow traffic flow.
While Ho Chi Minh City currently sits as the 9th most congested city in Southeast Asia according to Traffic Index, and with the prospective population growth the state of traffic will only get worse. While nowhere near as bad as Manila or Bangkok, the congestion in Ho Chi Minh is estimated to cost the city $820 million a year according to a 2016 study by the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology coming from late employees, to delayed delivery of goods.
Hectic traffic in Ho Chi Minh City
The Vietnamese government has and are also currently investing in transport infrastructures that will lighten the traffic, spending about 5.2% of national GDP on infrastructure. Of these the Thu Thiem Tunnel, a underwater tunnel connecting the Thu Thiem New Urban Area in District 2 to Vo Van Kiet Street, the interchange between District 4 and District 1, is a notable example. The Phu My Bridge between District 2 and District 7 is another such example.
Since late 2015, Ho Chi Minh City has begun seeing signs of the construction of the city’s first Metro Line. On October 31st 2017, officials held an opening ceremony for the first section of a tunnel dug using a modern boring machine. The underground section runs from Ben Thanh under District 1 and will surface in Binh Thanh near the Saigon Bridge where it will join the overhead Metro Line heading to Suoi Tien Amusement Park in District 9. The first line will look to be completed by 2020.
Prospective metro line under construction with The Vista apartments in District 2 serves as a backdrop
Such improvement in transport infrastructure will increase growth in various sectors. One of them will be the real estate sector, as prices of properties near Metro stations will see a increase due to added attraction.
Projects such as Thao Dien Pearl, Masteri Thao Dien, The Vista, The Estella, Estella Heights, Vinhomes Central Park and The Manor are all prospected to benefit greatly from the opening of the Metro Line. Similarly, areas such as Thao Dien will become even more developed as access is much easier, allowing for more students to access international schools in Thao Dien and food enthusiasts to taste international cuisine.
One other opinion is that the reduction of traffic and accessibility will mean that residents may move further away from the city center to district also along the metro line. This may result in an increase in demands for housing and accommodations in District 9, with projects such as Riviera Cove set to benefit.
With Line 2 aiming to extend to the Thu Thiem New Urban Area, the future of Vietnam’s transport system looks ever promising especially the development of Thu Thiem New Urban Area as a replacement CBD, an efficient metro system could be vital for the city and it’s residents.
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