The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transport has proposed that long-haul buses be banned from the inner city in a bid to alleviate traffic jams and eliminate makeshift bus stops.
The transport department suggested a road map to ban long-haul buses with over 30 seats from entering the inner city.
In the first phase from 2022 to 2025, sleeper buses will be prohibited from traveling into the inner city area inside the corridor from National Highway No. 1 (Thu Duc City, District 12, Binh Tan District, Binh Chanh District) - Nguyen Van Linh Street (Binh Chanh District, District 7) - Vo Chi Cong Street (Thu Duc City) - Dong Van Cong Street (Thu Duc City) - Mai Chi Tho Street (Thu Duc City) - Hanoi Highway (Thu Duc City).
In the second phase from 2025 to 2030, long-haul buses with over 30 seats, except for city buses, funeral cars, official vehicles, and tourist buses, will not be allowed to enter the inner city from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm daily.
The transport department believed that this plan will cause little socio-economic impact while improving passenger transport activities in the area.
A transport official stated that the city has about 107 makeshift stops for long-haul buses, thus the ban will help deal with these problems as well as mitigate traffic congestion.
Ta Chuong Chin, deputy director of the Mien Dong (Eastern) Bus Station, expressed his support for the proposal, stating that it would facilitate the operation of the new Mien Dong Bus Station in Thu Duc City.
A representative of the Mien Tay (Western) Bus Station said that the plan, if implemented properly, will bring about positive changes to the city’s traffic situation.
|A serious traffic jam along the route leading to Mien Dong (Eastern) Bus Station in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre|
“I see long-haul buses picking up and dropping off passengers on Le Hong Phong Street every day, which poses a high risk of traffic jams and accidents,” said Nguyen Canh Don, a resident in District 5.
“Traffic police have fined these bus drivers on multiple occasions, but the same situation repeated after a few days.”
Tran Quang Thang, director of the city’s Institute of Economics and Management, stated that banning long-haul buses from the inner city is necessary but it needs to be done carefully.
Authorities should consider establishing some fixed locations where long-haul buses are allowed to pick up and drop off passengers, Thang elaborated, adding that those failing to comply with such regulations must be sternly penalized.
Khuong Kim Tao, a former official at the National Traffic Safety Committee, reckoned that the plan should take into consideration the interests of local residents.
The city’s major bus stations are located quite far from the city center, while the traffic infrastructure has not been complete and types of public transportation are not connected properly, Tao explained.