|New buildings along the Sài Gòn River in HCM City’s District 2. — Photo Bat Dong San Cafef.|
HCM CITY — Construction works are endangering the banks of the Sài Gòn River which supplies water for the city’s residents and contributes significantly to the development of HCM City.
Originating from Bình Phước, the Sài Gòn River runs through the southern provinces of Tây Ninh and Bình Dương before reaching HCM City, with an 80km stretch of the river in the city.
Taking a boat tour along the river, travellers can see many construction works along the banks.
Along the river from District 12 to Bình Thạnh, Gò Vấp, Thủ Đức districts and District 2, dozens of houses are built on water.
Construction of embankments along the riverbanks has narrowed the river. A dozen houses and buildings have been erected along the riverbank in Thủ Đức District.
Construction works and houses have also been built along the bank of the Sài Gòn River in Thảo Điền Ward in District 2.
To cope with the situation, the HCM City People’s Committee asked the city’s Department of Planning and Architecture to form a joint team with officials from the Department for Tourism, the Institute for Research and Development of HCM City, the Transport Department, the Tân Thuận Industrial Promotion Company Limited (IPC), the management board of the South Sài Gòn Urban Area and the city’s steering board of the Flood Combating Programme.
They were asked to re-consider planning development and management of the construction works on the banks of the Sài Gòn River.
The teams found that the banks of the Sài Gòn River were occupied by 83 construction projects for residential areas, apartment complexes and amusement parks, covering more than 45ha.
As many as 76 works under these projects are affecting corridor areas that protect the rivers and canals. These areas are protected from encroachment under the city’s construction regulations.
Architect Ngô Viết Nam Sơn, a construction expert from HCM City, said the encroachment of the safety corridors and banks of the Sài Gòn River had affected the stream flow of the river and posed risks of collapse of sections of the banks.
Each construction project will be examined and measures will be taken to deal with all of them.
The projects which violate the regulations on protection of riverbank safety (that occurred after the regulations were issued in 2004) must be removed to ensure riverbank safety.
The city’s Department of Planning and Architecture also asked the HCM City People’s Committee to step up inspections and impose stricter punishment on companies and individuals who encroach illegally on riverbank corridors. — VNS