Da Nang seeks solutions to choking gridlock

By Nguyen Dong   January 12, 2017 | 12:45 am PT
Da Nang seeks solutions to choking gridlock
Traffic congestion in Da Nang gets worse with rapid urbanization and private vehicle boom. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong
Congestion has become a serious problem in the central city due to rapid urbanization and widespread use of private vehicles.

The central coastal city of Da Nang is likely to employ drastic measures to combat its growing traffic problems, including road space rationing and restriction for motorbikes and cars, said Le Van Trung, head of the city’s transport department.

The municipal agency is scheduled to consider a number of proposals in June, including a plan to reduce private vehicles on the road in the city center.

Da Nang, a city of 1.1 million people, has roughly 600,000 cars and about 800,000 motorbikes and scooters, said Le Ngoc, head of the municipal traffic police department.

The explosion of new vehicles is stretching the city's infrastructure, and Da Nang’s population is forecast to reach 2.5 million by 2030, according to a survey by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

"Traffic congestion in the inner city is likely to become worse in the foreseeable future. That’s why it’s time to reduce private vehicles," said Tran Dan, vice chairman of Da Nang’s Association of Bridges and Roads.

The city’s leaders have also blamed rapid urbanization and a high-rise boom for the congestion problem.

"We’ve started thinking about restrictions on housing developments and migration to the inner city," said Mayor Huynh Duc Tho at a People’s Committee meeting last month.

"A multi-storey residential building can squeeze in 700-800 families. This would make traffic congestion even more severe," he explained.

He also admitted that the city lacks a feasible solution to curb congestion on the current road layout.

However, Tho said that talk of reducing private vehicles was "hardly feasible due to a lack of public transport."

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