Hanoi resumes sidewalk paving, but public dubious about quality

By Vo Hai, Gia Chinh   April 2, 2019 | 10:12 pm PT
Hanoi resumes sidewalk paving, but public dubious about quality
Workers pave the sidewalk along Tran Dang Ninh Street in Cau Giay District, Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Gia Chinh
Hanoi is retiling sidewalks on 300 streets, but the public is skeptical after previous experience of shoddy work.

For the work, natural stones, terrazzo and concrete bricks will be used.

The stones will be used on streets with underground electrical and telecom cables.

The work actually began in 2016, and authorities had claimed then that resurfacing degraded sidewalks with natural stone would make them "last for the next 50-70 years."

They had planned to repave 936 streets in 12 districts by 2020 to improve the city’s appearance.

But within a year there were visible cracks and damage in many areas, prompting the public to question the quality of the materials used.

Investigations found violations in designs and techniques used.

The project was put on hold until now.

But the public continues to doubt the quality of the materials and wonders how long before the sidewalks are damaged again.

Many also complained about the lack of coordination between various government agencies in carrying out infrastructure work and, as a result, the repeated digging up of sidewalks to lay cables.

Hung Nam Khong, an exasperated citizen, said: "My home is on Ho Dac Di Street in Dong Da District. The sidewalk there had been paved for less than a year when workers from the power firm came to dig it up. Then staff from the telecom firm came to do the same."

Others wonder why the city does not just concrete all its sidewalks instead of using tiles.

Many blame the city for failing to keep vehicles off the sidewalks.

"Sidewalks cannot withstand motorbikes and cars climbing on them even if are made of iron," Nguyen Quoc Huy said in a comment sent to VnExpress.

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