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21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

June 20, 2022 | 11:38 pm PT
Twenty-one years since approval, still incomplete Go Vap Cultural Park in HCMC is surrounded by wild plants, swamps, and garbage.
21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

Ho Chi Minh City's administration approved to build Go Vap Cultural Park project on an area of 37 hectares in 2001.

Costing VND99 billion ($4.3 million), the project is set to feature items like a statue garden, commercial center, outdoor exercise area, playground, and landscaped lake. As planned, the park could serve 10,000 visitors per day.

After more than 20 years, the park remains incomplete and inundated by wild plants, swamps and garbage.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

The gate to the park lies at the end of Nguyen Van Luong Street. It is not open around the clock like other parks in the city but only from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

The park currently has only a few items complete, including the operator house, internal roads, lighting system, miniatures, and amusement parks.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

The outdoor exercise area and playground are nearly completed. A guard at the park said the two items have only been finished within the past two years.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

Garbage has accumulated in certain areas of the park due to an incomplete sanitation service.

Most of the park is covered by overgrown vegetation. Some areas are either swamps or land illegally used for banana and vegetable cultivation.

Though it remains unfinished, it still attracts visitors eager to take photos or enjoy picnics.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

As planned, embankments and fences are required around the canal.

"On sunny days, the water is blackish and stinks," this fisherman said.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

Makeshift shacks serve food and drinks to park staff.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

A road yet to be covered with asphalt.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

Building materials left abandoned inside the park.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

An area near Vam Thuat River, a tributary of Saigon River.

21-year delay leaves Saigon park incomplete

The 1/500 planning map of the park in the operator's house has faded over time.

According to the Go Vap District administration, the project was handed over to a private firm in 2007 before it was transferred back to Go Vap and then the Transport Department and Construction Department.

 
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