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France’s financial aid expected to hasten renovation of Hanoi’s iconic Long Bien Bridge

France’s financial aid expected to hasten renovation of Hanoi’s iconic Long Bien Bridge

Saturday, December 16, 2023, 14:44 GMT+7
France’s financial aid expected to hasten renovation of Hanoi’s iconic Long Bien Bridge
Motorcycles travel on the deteriorating Long Bien Bridge in Hanoi. Photo: Pham Tuan / Tuoi Tre

The French government will provide the Hanoi People’s Committee with over 700,000 euros (US$762,740) in non-refundable aid to conduct a feasibility study on the 120-year-old Long Bien Bridge repair and renovation project.

The French side expects the bridge to be put under repair as soon as the France-sponsored feasibility study is completed.

The French Embassy in Vietnam made this announcement on Friday, saying that the aid is granted when the two nations are celebrating 50 years of diplomatic ties.

The financial assistance, sourced from France’s Directorate General of the Treasury, is aimed at ensuring the safety of commuters and the sustainability of the historic structure, one of iconic bridges in Hanoi, according to the French Embassy in Vietnam.

France’s consultancy, engineering and project management group Artelia will study the feasibility of the rehabilitation project.

The feasibility study and the renovation project are meant to guarantee the safety of the structure, and turn the iconic bridge into a tourist site that will benefit the city’s socioe-conomic growth in the future.

The French Development Agency pledged to support Hanoi agencies to discuss financial assistance for other projects.

Built from 1898 to 1903, Long Bien Bridge has a style of Eiffel Tower, and is an iconic structure for Hanoi’s cityscape and heritage, according to the French Embassy in Vietnam.

Furthermore, the bridge also acts as a symbol of Vietnam - France ties.

However, Long Bien Bridge has seriously deteriorated over time.

The bridge was severely damaged by bombing in 1967. 

In 2004, during a visit to Vietnam, late French President Jacques Chirac announced that France would finance the renovation of Long Bien Bridge

Accordingly, several groups of French experts and workers traveled to Vietnam to help the city study the rehabilitation of the bridge.

Over the past decades, the renovation and preservation of Long Bien Bridge has been a hot topic for discussion between local authorities, relevant agencies and experts.

No decisions have yet to be made.

Vietnamese agencies have recently expressed their expectation that they want to turn the bridge into a pedestrian one featuring a cultural space.

The 2,290-meter-long Long Bien Bridge over the Red River connects Hoan Kiem and Ba Dinh Districts with Long Bien District.

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Tieu Bac - Thien Dieu / Tuoi Tre News

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