|The HCM City-Long Thành-Dầu Giây Expressway is expected to be widened to 10-12 lanes. — Photo baodongnai.com.vn|
HCM CITY — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has ordered the Ministry of Transport to review plans for the widening of the HCM City-Long Thành-Dầu Giây Expressway and its surrounding roads and report back by the end of the month.
Speaking at a recent meeting held with Đồng Nai leaders to discuss disbursement of funds for major transport projects, he said the province had proposed the widening of the expressway to 10-12 lanes from its current four.
The province People’s Committee said the work was urgent since the expressway is “a key transport route connecting with the proposed Long Thành international airport in the province.”
Traffic congestion occurs routinely on a section of Highway No. 51 between HCM City and the province during peak hours and holidays, and on the HCM City-Long Thành-Dầu Giây Expressway, it said.
The widening would ease congestion when the airport opens, which is scheduled for 2025.
The 55km-long expressway was built five years ago, shortening travel from HCM City to south-eastern provinces to 20 minutes from the earlier 60 and to Vũng Tàu to a little more than an hour.
But drivers have been complaining about the slow speed of traffic on the road, and the expressway management has to frequently warn people to look for other routes.
According to the Việt Nam Expressway Services Engineering Joint Stock Company, which manages it, 40,000-43,000 vehicles ply on it daily during weekends and 60,000 during holidays.
The spots most often gridlocked are Long Phước and Dầu Giây stations, branch D of Highway No. 50, inner roads connecting with Highway 51, and Mai Chí Thọ and Võ Chí Công streets.
Phúc also urged the Ministry of Transport to prepare investment plans for construction of the Phan Thiết - Dầu Giây section parallel to National Highway No 1, which will start by the end of this year.
He also urged the Ministries of Planning and Investment and Finance to arrange funding (both reciprocal and foreign capital) for the Bến Lức - Long Thành expressway, and the Ministry of Transport to speed up plans for the construction of ring roads No 3 and No 4.
The ring road No 3 will link up with national highways 1A and 22, and the Bến Lức-Long Thành, HCM City-Trung Lương, HCM City-Long Thành-Dầu Giây, and HCM City-Mộc Bài expressways.
The ring road No 4 will be a 198km expressway running through HCM City and Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu, Bình Dương, Đồng Nai, and Long An provinces.
Public investment disbursement for airport
Phúc also urged Đồng Nai authorities to hasten disbursement of funds for public works.
Long Thành airport is a key national project, he said, urging the Airports Corporation of Việt Nam and the Ministry of Transport to work with the province to complete the feasibility report and investment plans for it so that construction could start this year.
He told the province to speed up disbursement of VNĐ23 trillion ($1 billion) for acquiring and clearing lands for it.
“Priority should be given to the handover of 1,800ha of land to begin construction of the airport and resettlement of affected households before the National Assembly session begins in October.”
The airport, which will spread over more than 5,580ha in six communes in Long Thành District, will cost more than VNĐ336 trillion ($14.6 billion).
In its first phase, a runway and one passenger terminal along with support works will be built to serve 25 million passengers and 1.2 million tonnes of cargo a year.
It is expected to be completed by 2025. — VNS