VNRE - The Asian Development Bank's (ADB's) Board of Directors has approved a 1.1 billion USD finance package for two major transportation projects in Vietnam that will help unclog Ho Chi Minh City's overcrowded roadways.
The Manila-based financial institution said in a press release on December 14 that it will provide 540 million USD towards a 1.4 billion USD project to construct a second mass transit line in Ho Chi Minh City , and an additional 636 million USD for a 1.6 billion USD project to construct a modern expressway to the south of the city.
"These projects will significantly reduce traffic congestion, help lower traffic accidents, and abate carbon emissions," James Lynch, Director of ADB's Transport and Urban Transport Division for Southeast Asia, was quoted as saying.
The 11.3-kilometre metro rail line will stretch from Ben Thanh in central Ho Chi Minh City , near the city's largest market, out past the Tan Son Nhat International Airport to Tham Luong. 9.3 kilometres of the mass transit line will run underground, with 2 kilometres of elevated and transition track. Approximately 213,000 passenger loadings per day are expected during the first year of operation in 2017, rising to 300,000 per day by 2020 and over 700,000 daily loadings by 2035.
The metro rail will reduce travel time along the corridor by 20 percent from 2010 levels, with traffic accidents expected to fall by 30 percent.
The ADB-backed metro rail line will be constructed in coordination with other metro rail lines being developed in Ho Chi Minh City , the first of which has been significantly funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
The 57-kilometre expressway between Ben Luc and Long Thanh will further alleviate traffic in the centre of Ho Chi Minh City , while facilitating the transport of goods between the major ports of the city. When the full expressway opens in 2017, through-traffic will be able to bypass the city centre, reducing east-west travel time by 80 percent, with a 10 percent reduction in traffic accident rates.
According to ADB, the Government of Japan is expected to provide 635 million USD for the Ben Luc-Long Thanh Expressway Project, with the Government of Vietnam providing the remaining 337 million USD.
Other financiers of the Ho Chi Minh City Urban Mass Transit Line 2 Investment Program are KfW Bankengrupe (313 million USD), the European Investment Bank (195 million USD) and the Government of Vietnam (326.5 million USD).