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Ho Chi Minh City to relocate 5,800 more households for canal clean-up

Friday, March 11, 2016, 13:19 GMT+7
Ho Chi Minh City to relocate 5,800 more households for canal clean-up
A woman is seen walking on a bridge crossing the Doi canal in District 8, Ho Chi Minh City

Around 5,800 households along canals in Ho Chi Minh City are expected to be relocated in advance of a major aquatic environment improvement project.

The upcoming “exodus” is in preparation for the third phase of an ongoing project to improve the aquatic environment in the southern metropolis.

The project, launched in 2012, is funded by Japanese government’s official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam through Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

ODA financing is undertaken by the official sector to promote the economic development and welfare of developing countries.

According to Luong Minh Phuc, director of the city's Urban Traffic Constructions Investment Management Board, over the past few years, the basins of four major canals in Ho Chi Minh City, Tau Hu – Ben Nghe – Doi – Te, have undergone the first and second phases of the project.

Phuc said the project is currently in its prefeasibility phase, with the city’s People’s Committee and JICA recently going on a field trip to inspect the canals in preparation for its third phase.

The primary goal of the third phase is to dredge the Doi and Te canals and upgrade 13.5 kilometers of roadway that run alongside them.  The improvements will aim to allow an unobstructed flow of water to eradicate urban flooding.

The project is expected to affect an area of 1,600ha along the canals that run through districts 4, 7, 8, and Binh Chanh district, relocating 29 offices and 6,200 households, 400 of which have already been relocated as part of phases one and two, Phuc said.

The site clearance compensation is estimated at around VND4,500 billion (US$202 million), and compensation plans are still being sketched.

Answering Tuoi Tre’s (Youth) question on the lives of the affected residents, Phuc said there were a number of difficulties facing the relocation plan, such as the density of households in some areas and the durability of certain houses.

Phuc said discussions were underway among the board, the city’s Department of Construction, and chairman of the People’s Committee of District 8 to combine the relocation plan with the construction of new high-rises in cleared areas for displaced residents live.

This new fashion of relocating, Phuc said, was an answer to the people’s wish not to be moved too far from their old homes, as observed in previous projects.

The ultimate goal of the relocation plan and the whole aquatic environment improvement project is to improve the quality of life for the people, Phuc concluded.

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