Hanoi’s iconic Sword Lake gets a makeover

By Tat Dinh   April 22, 2020 | 04:00 pm PT
Hanoi’s iconic Sword Lake gets a makeover
A skyline view of Hanoi's Hoan Kiem Lake area at twilight. Photo by Shutterstock.
Hanoi’s Sword Lake is getting a facelift with the work beginning on Tuesday.

The embankment will be upgraded, new slabs will be laid on walking paths and the drainage system in the nearby flower gardens will be improved. The 1,452-meter embankment will be the first to be fixed.

Pham Tuan Long, vice chairman of the Hoan Kiem District People's Committee, said the district consulted experts and citizens about the embankment.

"The entire embankment will be built with dark green concrete slabs. Ho Guom (Sword Lake) will retain its signature characteristics after the renovation."

The sidewalk around the lake will be covered in 10-cm by 10-cm granite slabs.

A section in Sword Lake is marked with tarpaulin fence for embankment upgrade near Thuy Ta restaurant. Photo by VnExpress/Tat Dinh

Sword Lake with a portion covered with a tarpaulin fence to facilitate work on the embankment near the Thuy Ta restaurant. Photo by VnExpress/Tat Dinh.

Hanoi has been considering the improvements and embellishments required for the lake since 2010.

In December 2016 the city People's Committee tasked the district with the work.

Hoan Kiem District organized an exhibition to introduce the design plan and collect public opinion about it in 2017 and 2018.

In early 2019 the embankments along Le Thai To and Hang Khay Streets cracked with some deep craters being formed.

Near Thuy Ta restaurant, a large piece of concrete broke and fell into the water.

District authorities have cordoned off the area and put up warning signs.

In January the city held a third exhibition to obtain public opinion.

The 11.5-hectare lake, also known as Hoan Kiem (Returned Sword), is so-named for a legend that says a golden turtle god showed up in the lake to take back the sword it had given King Le Loi in the 15th century to help him fight Chinese invaders.

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