Director of Ha Noi's Transport Department Nguyen Quoc Hung spoke to the Dai Doan Ket (Great Unity) newspaper about the city's plans to curb traffic congestion and create a more efficient transport network by 2030.
Ha Noi People's Council has approved the city's 2030 transportation planning as well as a project to curb traffic congestion in the next three years. What results can we expect from these plans?
As soon as the Government approved the city's master development plan, Ha Noi transportation authorities began planning to improve transportation by 2030.
The municipal administration approved many projects relating to transportation improvement, which is critical for the city's development. Recently, in the 5th meeting of the municipal People's Committee, the administration approved VND1.944 trillion (US$92.5 million) for a project to curb traffic congestion in the next three years and VND1,145 trillion ($54.5 billion) to develop public transportation.
Under the plan, by 2015, congestion will be dramatically reduced at 27 "hot spots" where traffic jams often occur during rush hours, and the length of a typical traffic jam will decrease by 40 per cent.
At that time, public transportation will meet 65 per cent of demand. This will reduce the number of private vehicles on the street, thus helping solve the problem of traffic congestion.
However, to achieve these goals, Ha Noi will face many challenges - the biggest of which is attracting investment into transportation infrastructure.
What are some ways to mobilise resources?
We've considered mobilising resources both from the private sector and from land. Under the plan, many new roads will be opened, increasing land values. The Government can take advantage of the increased land rent to fund transportation projects. Other funding resources include the State's budget, ODA, and the private sector. Developing transportation projects is one of our top priorities.
Under the plan, land for transportation will increase from 6-8 to 15 per cent of the city's area. Is it possible to realise such an ambitious goal?
Under the city's master plan, by 2020, land for transportation will account for 13-15 per cent and by 2030, the percentage will increase to 20-26 per cent. Land area for transportation is created by opening new roads, removing other constructions and expanding urban areas. When a road is opened, it can help form a new urban area and boost the development of the area where the road is located. To investors, the new road will increase the value of the areas they invest in. So, transportation projects should be given priority to facilitate urbanisation and synchronous development. — VNS