Eyesore to Saigon landmark: Houses in middle of street

The houses are also a regular cause of traffic jams in the areas

The house 845A Au Co is located in the middle of the intersection of Luy Ban Bich, Au Co, and Ba Van Streets in Tan Phu District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Several houses are now located in the middle of many streets in Ho Chi Minh City as a result of unsuccessful clearance and compensation negotiation between homeowners and authorities when these roads were expanded.

These residences take up a large space on the roadways, making them not only an eyesore to the city’s landscape but also a regular cause of traffic jams in the areas.

The intersection of Luy Ban Bich, Au Co, and Ba Van Streets in Tan Phu District is a notorious black spot for traffic jams during rush hours.

The area is overwhelmed with congestion on a regular basis, with commuters lamenting that the traffic jams normally last between 30 minutes to an hour.

The situation is exacerbated by the strange location of the house at 845A Au Co, which has been sitting right in the middle of the intersection for three years.

The owner of the house was the only one refusing to relocate during the expansion of Au Co Street, Nguyen Thi Hanh, a local resident, explained.

The ‘stubborn house’ has been the main reason for bottleneck at the neighborhood, the local added.

According to Le Thanh Liem, director of the city’s urban upgrading investment - investment management unit, developer of the road expansion project, the agency had repeatedly called on the Tan Phu administration to gear up the site clearance process at the area.

However, the road expansion had eventually had to complete in 2014 as it could not wait for the clearance of the only house forever.

A petition was submitted to the local administration to relocate the 845A house in November 2016.

Several negotiations have been conducted with the house owner, a local official said, expecting that an agreement would soon be reached.

A house takes up a section of the roadway of Street No.3 in Thu Duc District. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A house takes up a section of the roadway of Street No.3 in Thu Duc District. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Similarly, along the Street No.3 in Thu Duc District, several houses can be seen invading nearly half of the roadway.

These house owners have lived there for 11 years and did not want to give up their land when a road expansion began in 2006.

Nguyen Hai Nam, head of the urban management division in Thu Duc, said the expansion project did not include financial plan for site clearance and compensation.

Local authorities had encouraged the affected residents to ‘donate’ their land plots for the road work, Nam said. However, some households insisted that they receive compensation.

“Authorities in Thu Duc are still convincing these residents to change their mind,” he added.

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