​Company suggests charging cars entering downtown Ho Chi Minh City

A driver would have to pay VND30,000 ($1.32) to VND50,000 (2.20)

A traffic jam in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City on January 20, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre

A local firm has put forward a plan to charge every automobile entering downtown Ho Chi Minh City an average fee of almost US$2, in a bid to reduce congestion.

The Innovative Technology Development Corporation (iTD) has submitted a project to the municipal People’s Committee and the Department of Transport, suggesting that each car entering the city center pay a fee for the ultimate goal of alleviating traffic jams.

This ‘downtown area’ includes streets within a diameter formed by Hoang Sa, Nguyen Phuc Nguyen, Canh Mang Thang Tam, Ba Thang Hai, Le Hong Phong, Ly Thai To, Nguyen Van Cu, Vo Van Kiet, and Ton Duc Thang Streets.

A total of 36 tollgates would be placed along the diameter, all of which will be monitored by a control center, according to the project.

The fare would be charged from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm every day.

Drivers of personal cars would have to pay VND40,000 ($1.76), while taxi drivers would be charged VND30,000 ($1.32), the firm said in the proposal.

A map detailing the ‘downtown area’ to which the project would be applied. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A map detailing the ‘downtown area’ to which the project would be applied. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Truck and commercial bus drivers would be required to pay VND50,000 ($2.20).

The toll would only be collected when these vehicles enter the downtown area, the firm noted.

The project is projected to cost an estimated VND1.797 billion ($79,099), iTD said, proposing that it should be carried out under a PPP (public–private partnership) deal and BLT (build, lease, transfer) contract.

Those who refuse to pay the fee would be penalized as per a government decree.

According to the company, the tollgates would be installed in 2018-19, after which the fee collection would be initiated.

The project is expected to generate some VND700 billion ($30.8 million) per year.

It is formulated to minimize congestion on major streets in the city center and to encourage local residents to use public transportation, the company claimed.

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