Two market buildings expected to replace unplanned outdoor marketplaces in Ho Chi Minh City have been abandoned for over ten years, and inaccessibility may have played a major role in the desertion.
The Phu Huu and Tan Phu Markets in District 9 share the same fate.
The government erected them in 2004 in hopes that it could once and for all remove neighboring streetside marketplaces where residents gathered and hindered road traffic.
But within just a few years, business at the market buildings petered out, sellers left due to losses, and now a scene of equipment dilapidation dominates their interior.
Thick dust gathers on the stalls, many of which show clearly visible rust.
Inconvenience in reaching the buildings could have caused them to outlive their usefulness.
Every day multiple trucks and juggernauts pass the 2,000-square-meter Phu Huu Market, just over one-fourth of a standard football field, which poses a safety threat to visitors, according to Tran Phuoc Hung, a local government leader.
The market management is planning to ask for a solution from the District 9 authorities, Hung added.
Double in area, Tan Phu Market has become an unofficial garbage dump for locals.
It is located near the vast Suoi Tien Theme Park along a major road but would-be buyers find it difficult to arrive at the facility and instead purchase food at nearby convenience stores and supermarkets, said Nguyen Thi Lanh, a resident living a stone’s throw from the market.
Lanh recalled the bustle and excitement of customers at the market after it opened.
The trouble in getting to the place was also noted by a local leader called Huynh Van Nam, who additionally cited a low population density as another cause for its unpopularity.
The market building is scheduled to be put on corporate or private lease, Nam said.