Not happening: Hanoi's Nhon metro to miss 2022 deadline

By Son Ha, Vo Hai   July 31, 2022 | 02:00 am PT
Not happening: Hanoi's Nhon metro to miss 2022 deadline
The Nhon depot of the Nhon-Hanoi Station metro line, is half-finished in late 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Pham Chieu
The Nhon-Hanoi Station metro line, scheduled to have its elevated section running by the end of this year, will miss the deadline, its managers have said.

The Nhon depot construction is less than 80 percent complete and the line’s consortium of sponsors, including the Asia Development Bank, the French Development Agency and the French Treasury, said in a recent letter to the Vietnamese government that completing the elevated section by the of 2022 "seems no longer practical."

Le Trung Hieu, deputy director of Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Management Board (MRB), said Sunday that it’s unclear when the section can be finished due to problems with the contractor.

Consultants of the project said the contractor of the 8.5-km elevated section, Hanoi Construction Corporation, is either not capable of or not committed to fulfilling the VND800 billion ($34.27 million) contract, which was initially scheduled for completion in February 2018 but later delayed to December 2022.

Work on the 4-km underground section has also been suspended by the South Korean-Italian joint venture contractor Hyundai E&C-Ghella since July 2021 as the site needed for it is yet to be cleared.

In April 2019, the contractor had complained about the slow disbursement of funds and delays in handing over construction land. It had requested MRB for a compensation of $81 million. The MRB sorted out the issue later.

The Nhon-Hanoi Station route, the capital's second metro line, is to run 12.5 kilometers from Nhon in the western district of Nam Tu Liem, via Kim Ma Street to the downtown Hanoi Railway Station.

Work on the project began in 2010 with an estimated investment of $1.2 billion, but several delays have pushed the cost up to $1.55 billion.

The capital city’s first metro line, also the country’s first, started running in November last year.

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