Heavy traffic occurs on a section of National Highway No 1A near Bình Điền Bridge in HCM City’s Bình Chánh District during peak hours and holidays. — VNS Photo Nguyễn Diệp
HCM CITY — HCM City is considering building new roads and widening existing roads in its southwestern area to reduce congestion and traffic accidents in high risk hotspots.
The southwestern area is an inter-regional connection between the city and the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta province of Long An Province, but its transport infrastructure has not caught up with growth.
Several main arterial roads in the area are becoming more congested.
For example, traffic jams occur at Ngã 5 Vĩnh Lộc Intersection near Vĩnh Lộc Industrial Park in Bình Chánh District during peak hours. The area is clogged from 5pm to 6pm daily.
Võ Văn Vân, Nguyễn Thị Tú and Vĩnh Lộc streets leading to the intersection are narrow but have to carry a huge volume of vehicles.
The congestion has had a significant impact on people's lives and the circulation of goods. Overloading of vehicles has also contributed to the rapid deterioration of the roads.
A narrow section of National Highway No 1A extending from An Lac intersection in HCM City to an area adjacent to Long An Province also faces the same situation. It is clogged during rush hours with a large number of vehicles from southwestern provinces.
The National Highway No 50 section from District 8 to Bình Chánh District’s Đa Phước Commune also faces serious traffic jams as the section is only 10-11m wide.
Trần Văn Giàu Street in HCM City’s Bình Chánh District is one of the main routes connecting the city with neighbouring Long An Province, but congestion occurs frequently at its two intersections.
The intersection at Vĩnh Lộc, Láng Le Bàu Cò, Võ Hữu Lợi and Trần Văn Giàu streets, and the intersection at Xáng Bridge and Trần Văn Giàu, Thanh Niên and Mai Bá Hương streets are about two kilometres apart, but they have been traffic hotspots for many years.
Other routes in the city’s southwestern part also have traffic jams, such as Đinh Đức Thiện and Chánh Hưng streets and Quách Điêu - Nữ Dân Công - Phạm Văn Sáng Intersection.
Phan Công Bằng, deputy director of the city’s Department of Transport, said the city has invested in upgrading many routes in the southwestern part in recent years, but they have been ineffective.
“Opening more new routes through agricultural land would have lower costs, instead of the expansion of existing roads, which has high costs for site clearance compensation,” he said.
The department is working with others to devise solutions on enhancing regional connectivity and traffic capacity in the southwest.
Bùi Trọng Thống, director of Bình Chánh District’s Management Board of Construction Investment Projects, said the board has asked the district’s People’s Committee to approve 61 traffic projects at a total cost of VNĐ15.75 trillion (nearly US$680 million) in the 2020-25 period.
Of these, there will be 30 projects that will upgrade and expand existing routes, and others that will build new routes.
Connectivity between the city’s Bình Chánh District and Long An Province will be enhanced through upgrading and expanding Trần Văn Giàu Street, the National Highway No 1A section adjacent to Long An Province’s Bến Lức District, the National Highway No 50 section adjacent to Long An Province’s Cần Giuộc District, and a section from Xáng Bridge to Long An Province’s Đức Hòa District.
Many routes linking the city’s Bình Chánh and Hóc Môn districts are expected to be upgraded, such as Quách Điêu, Phạm Văn Sáng and Vĩnh Lộc streets.
The Management Board of Construction Investment Project will build a new extension from Nguyễn Cửu Phú Street in Bình Chánh District to the HCM City-Trung Lương Expressway, as well as a new road between the city’s Bình Chánh and Long An Province’s Đức Hòa District, a new underpass under Cần Giuộc Bridge, and new Xáng 2, Ba Lạc and Qui Đức bridges.
Currently, a project on widening a 2.5km section of National Highway No 1A from Tân Kiên Intersection to Bình Thuận Intersection in Bình Chánh from 30m to 120m is awaiting capital allocation.
An investment policy for a project to expand a 7km section of National Highway No 50 from Nguyễn Văn Linh Street to an area adjacent to Long An Province is awaiting approval. The section will be widened to 34m with six lanes. — VNS