CPV: The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Board of Directors on March 29 has approved a 293 million USD loan to support a 1 billion USD metro rail project in Hanoi.
The new rail link will stretch from Hanoi’s main railway station in Hoan Kiem district to Nhon, in Tu Liem district, 12.5 km to the West. It is scheduled to be completed in 2015.
As Vietnam’s economy continues to grow, many of Hanoi’s residents are switching from motorbikes to cars. This trend, coupled with the fact that the capital’s population is expected to balloon from six to eight million people by 2025, threatens development and the environment.
“If Hanoi doesn’t develop quality, high-volume public transportation systems the city will slowly grind to a standstill over the next decade. Nine out of ten people in congested Hanoi use private vehicles as their primary means of transport, with the remainder relying primarily on buses. The metro is essential to Hanoi’s future”, said Mr Robert Valkovic, ADB’s Principal Transport Specialist for Southeast Asia.
Over 150,000 people a day are expected to use metro initially, with the number rising to almost half a million a day by 2030.
The line, also funded by the Government of France and the European Investment Bank, is one of four priority metro lines planned for the capital’s metropolitan area. Hanoi’s Urban Transport Master Plan aims to get half the city using public transport by 2020.
Earlier this year, the Bank already approved a separate loan in support of a metro line in Ho Chi Minh City, bringing ADB’s total support for urban metro rail development in Vietnam to 833 million USD.