|The pavement in front of the National Paediatrics Hospital has been appropriated for parking motorbikes in Dong Da District, Ha Noi. A year after the imposition of a ban on vehicle parking in 262 streets in nine districts in the capital, many locations have returned to their initial chaos. — VNA/VNS Photo Duong Thuy
HA NOI (VNS)— A year after the imposition of a ban on vehicles parking in 262 streets in nine districts in the capital, many locations have returned to their initial chaos.
Moving along streets listed in the ban, it is easy to find motorbikes and cars parked on the pavements.
On Dinh Tien Hoang Street in the Hoan Kiem District, where the demand for parking is high, two remain operational.
One is located right in front of the Ha Noi Post Office. As it is only some steps from the Hoan Kiem (Sword) Lake, the parking lot is always full of vehicles.
"My girlfriend and I often keep our motorbike there to visit Trang Tien Plaza shopping centre, walk around Hoan Kiem Lake, and buy ice-cream and books in the Dinh Le Street", said Tran Hai, 30, from northern Nam Dinh Province.
The second parking lot located at the Hoan Kiem Lake bus station.
Similar situations are seen in most streets of the Old Quarter, including Hang Ngang, Hang Dao, Hang Gai, Hang Trong, Hang Cot, and Hang Ma.
The situation is worse in smaller streets which intersect with Hang Ngang, Hang Dao, and Dong Xuan streets.
In Hang Luoc Street, vehicles are parked right beside no parking signs!
Bruno Calmont, a 55-year-old French tourist, complained that he could not find space to walk on the pavements in the Old Quarter.
He suggested the situation should be resolved to improve the city's image in the eyes of foreign tourists.
In districts such as Dong Da, Ba Dinh and Hai Ba Trung, although the situation is less chaotic, many cars and motorbikes are still parked in front of State agencies, restaurants, and coffee shops.
On Cat Linh Street, many small shops sell food from 5pm until midnight. The pavement on one side of the street is totally covered with customers while the other side is a parking lot.
"I stopped my business due to the ban on pavement and roadway parking. However, after a short time, many other shops restarted selling street food so I did the same", said a street food vendor in Cat Linh Street.
Nguyen Quoc Hoa, deputy chairman of the Hoan Kiem District People's Committee told Gia dinh & Xa hoi (Family & Society) newspaper that the number of official parking lots met only 12 per cent of total parking demand.
"The capital has recently decided to build a vehicle lot in Phuc Xa District which covers an area of nearly 11,000sq.m. This is considered a temporary solution to deal with the growing parking demand in the city", Hoa said.
While waiting for such plan to be conducted, numerous unofficial parking lots are still operating on the city's pavement everyday. — VNS