HCM CITY — Investors who had promised to include public spaces such as parks on their land for housing projectss have instead allowed businesses to occupy the areas.
|A corner of a public playground for children in HCM City. While many residential areas are modern, they have no playgrounds for children because property investors fail to accept their obligation to develop public spaces at their projects. — VNA/VNS Photo Hoang Hai
For example, a master plan for the Binh Tri Dong residential area in Binh Tri Dong B Ward in Binh Tan District was approved after the investor said it would allocate 2.5 hectares of a total of 29 hectares for public park.
The investor is the First District Production Import-Export & Service Joint Stock Company (Fimexco).
After 12 years, the infrastructure for the residential area is nearly complete except for public spaces.
"The residential area is a modern one but there is no playground for children. Older people have to do exercise on the road and the area that was supposed to be a park has become a tennis court," Truong Van Hoa, a resident, said.
The biggest open area has become a tennis court, and is used as a car park and storage. The four others have not been completed.
In addition, many completed parks in the district are hired for coffee shops at a rental of VND5 million - 10 million ($250 -500) each month.
"Park should be used as public spaces, not for business. Binh Tan District does not have a company to manage parks, but we will check into this situation," Tran Minh Khiem, deputy chairman of the district, was quoted as saying in Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.
He also confirmed that Fimexco did not have a public space. He said the Construction Department would investigate.
Fimexco has refused to discuss the situation.
The city's Natural Resources and Environment Department said the tennis court in Binh Tri Dong residential area was appropriate because a sport complex was supposed to be built in the area.
However, local residents said the tennis court would serve only a limited number of higher-income people and not the entire community.
City authorities have told several investors in Go Vap District to return their tennis courts and mini football field for hire to its original green state and build a park.
The investors justified the building of the courts, saying that it served as a sports areas, but their arguments were not accepted by authorities. — VNS