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Saigon underground shopping complex delayed due to lack of investor interest

By Huu Cong   February 27, 2020 | 07:59 pm PT
Saigon underground shopping complex delayed due to lack of investor interest
An artist's impression of the Ben Thanh underground metro station and shopping complex in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo courtesy of the city's Management Authority for Urban Railways.
An underground shopping complex long in the works in downtown Saigon is likely to be delayed due to the failure to attract investors.

A spokesperson for the city Department of Planning and Investment said on Thursday this means the VND6.8 trillion ($294 million) construction would not be done together with the first underground station in the 20-km metro line from Ben Thanh to Suoi Tien, the city’s first.

It also means the ground would have to be dug twice, possibly affecting the metro’s operation, he said.

The complex, which was approved in 2016, was meant to be finished at the same time as the metro in 2021.

It will be built on an area of 45,000 square meters between Ben Thanh Central Station, next to the iconic Ben Thanh Market, and the Opera House.

The complex will have 18,000 square meters of commercial space, while the remaining space will taken up by hallways and a public square.

It will be the first major underground construction in a city of 13 million where an increasing number of skyscrapers has been built in recent years amid a surge in land prices.

Construction of the metro line is nearing completion and test runs are scheduled in Q3.

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