HCMC relocating underground utilities for 2nd metro

By Gia Minh   February 19, 2024 | 05:48 pm PT
HCMC relocating underground utilities for 2nd metro
Workers relocate the underground cable system at Tao Dan Park in HCMC's District 1 to serve the construction of the metro line No.2, Feb. 19, 2024. Photo by VnExpress/Gia Minh
With contractor selection completed, the relocation of electricity and water systems has begun to make way for the construction of Ho Chi Minh City’s new metro line No. 2.

Workers began moving Tao Dan Park’s 110 kV underground cable system in District 1 on Tuesday in order to clear ground for the city’s upcoming second light rail route, the Ben Thanh – Tham Luong line.

The area will be the site for the Tao Dan underground station, one of the 10 stations for line No. 2, which runs 11 km between Districts 1 and 12, and through Districts 3, 10, Tan Binh, and Tan Phu.

Vu Van Vinh, Director of Project Management Unit 2 at the HCMC Urban Railway Management Board (MAUR), which manages the city's metro construction, said the relocation of electricity, water, and telecommunications is being carried out simultaneously at 12 locations along the metro line. Two of them will be open-cut sections. Nine of the route's 10 stations will be underground.

The project is expected to be completed by the end of the year to prepare the clear site for the construction packages of the Ben Thanh - Tham Luong Metro in 2025.

"Line No. 2 runs through the city's central thoroughfares, where traffic density is high, so managing construction while allowing space for traffic flow will be a significant challenge," he said, adding that construction work will be primarily conducted at night.

In April last year, the government approved a delay in the project schedule in order to hire a new consultant after MAUR failed to renew an earlier contract.

MAUR had also failed to pay for lands acquired for the project, citing disagreements with district authorities, which also contributed to the delay.

The line is scheduled to be "basically completed" in 2030 instead of 2026, with the official opening planned in 2032. Originally, it was planned to be up and running by 2016.

The original $1.3-billion price tag ballooned to $2.1 billion by 2019.

So far 87% of the lands needed for the route has been acquired, with most of the remaining sites being in District 3.

The city's first metro line, after frequent and long delays, is expected to enter commercial operations this July.

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