HCMC-Can Tho high speed train to cost $10 billion

By Cuu Long   July 26, 2019 | 11:33 am GMT+7
HCMC-Can Tho high speed train to cost $10 billion
A woman closes a crossing as a train arrives in Ho Chi Minh City, November 2018. An express railway is being planned between HCMC and Can Tho. Photo by Shutterstock/All themes.

A high-speed train connecting the two biggest cities of southern Vietnam, HCMC and Can Tho, would cost $10 billion, officials said Wednesday.

The route from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest metropolis, and Can Tho, the Mekong Delta’s economic hub, is to run 173 kilometers through four provinces - the industrial hub Binh Duong, and the Mekong Delta's major economic drivers Long An, Tien Giang and Vinh Long.

Experts say the route will link the economic zones of southern Vietnam and the Mekong Delta, while also meeting cargo and passenger transportation needs and reducing traffic congestion.

Le Tien Dung, director of Can Tho Transport Department, asked the Southern Institute of Science and Technology and other agencies at a meeting Wednesday to ensure that the design of the high speed railway matches the landscape and environment.

"The scale and capacity of the railway route and stations must ensure long-term operation," he said.

Dung said the railway has been planned since 2013 but as the project is still waiting for opinions from cities and provinces involved, a construction timeline has not been set.

The scale of the project announced Wednesday was larger than what was disclosed in March last year when the Southern Institute of Science and Technology stated that the route would be 139 kilometers long with a total investment of about $5 billion, running through three stations.

It also said the project would use double rails and 1,435mm gauge, which is the standard for high-speed rails in the world. The train would have a speed of around 200 kilometers per hour.

Vietnam currently has over 3,000 kilometers of railway tracks, none of them high-speed. Railway accounts for just 1.9 percent of the transportation sector in the country, according to the Vietnam Railway Authority.

 
 
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