Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Danish urban development lessons showed in Hanoi

Updated at Wednesday, 28 Nov 2018, 07:23
The Hanoitimes - Denmark has years of experience in addressing challenges from urbanization and has full capacity to support Vietnam`s cities to find sustainable solutions for the issues and improve the local life quality.
Vietnam’s aggressive urbanization is posing challenges to the environment and complicating the efforts to fight climate change. Therefore, Vietnamese cities are facing the need to grow in a green and sustainable way.

President of the Vietnam Urban Planning and Development Association (VUPDA) Tran Ngoc Chinh made the statement at a workshop on sustainable urban planning and development jointly held by the Danish Embassy in Vietnam in Hanoi on November 27.

The workshop is part of a series of events in the “Danish week – Sustainable and Livable Cities”, which focused on the Danish experience, achievements and lessons learned through the development of making Denmark’s capital Copenhagen, one of the most vibrant cities in the world.

The Vietnamese government has adopted specific strategies to deal with the issues, focusing on urban development, pragmatic urban design and management, city for people concept application, and green space architecture and public space development, VUPDA’s President Tran Ngoc Chinh said.

He added that growing urbanization is expected to trigger increasing demand for new sustainable urban solutions, particularly for developing countries like Vietnam.
Chief City Architect for Copenhagen (Denmark) Tina Saabye made speech at the meeting. Photo: Nguyen Ngan
Chief City Architect for Copenhagen (Denmark) Tina Saabye made speech at the meeting. Photo: Huu Manh
Meanwhile, Denmark has years of experience in addressing challenges from urbanization and the country is viewed as the world’s leading nation in green technology. It has full capacity to support metropolises like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to find sustainable solutions and improve the local quality of life, Chinh stressed.

Addressing the workshop, Danish Embassy’s Counsellor Bo Mønsted cited recent statistics from P4G (Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030) saying that cities cover 3% of the total area of the planet, but are responsible for 60% of the energy consumption, 70% of the greenhouse gas emissions and 70% of our waste. Increased urbanization is predicted to trigger an enormous demand for new and sustainable solutions, especially in developing countries like Vietnam.

“Denmark has a long history of addressing these issues and is known as one of the world leaders within green technologies. Therefore, I believe Denmark has much to offer to big cities like Hanoi and HCMC when it comes to finding new sustainable solutions in order to make the cities more liveable,” Bo Mønsted emphasized.

For her part, Chief City Architect for Copenhagen (Denmark) Tina Saabye said it is important to think about urban life before designing public spaces and buildings as urban life will determine the sustainability and livability of a city.

Tina Saabye pointed out  that no city exists without people living, working and traveling in it so people must be on top priority when it comes to urban planning.
Danish architects in a field trip in Hanoi during the “Danish Week – Sustainable and Livable Cities”. Photo: Danish Embassy
Danish architects in a field trip in Hanoi during the “Danish Week – Sustainable and Livable Cities”. Photo: Danish Embassy
She added that Vietnam is facing considerable challenges during the increasing urbanization. The infrastructure of water, waste and transportation is being pushed to the limit, even beyond the limit, which challenge the health and quality of life of its citizens. Thus, Copenhagen’s experiences are really useful for Vietnam’s cities.

Vietnamese authority will continue improving policies for urban development in the country to develop cities towards sustainability and in response to climate change, said Tran Thi Lan Anh from the Ministry of Construction.

Besides, Vietnam will put more effort to ease harmful environmental impacts of economic growth in the coming time. “The country wants to develop ecological urban areas towards sustainability, energy-saving, material sufficiency and low-carbon technology,” Lan Anh told Hanoitimes.

Denmark – Vietnam comprehensive partnership

Within the framework of the Comprehensive Partnership Agreement signed by the two countries in 2013, the Danish-Vietnamese relationship is a partnership focusing on political dialogue, cultural exchange, commercial activities and targeted ODA-projects matching Denmark’s strengths within areas such as green growth, health, education food and agriculture with present challenges faced by Vietnam.

“Danish Week – Sustainable and Livable Cities” is a week-long series of urban design and development activities co-hosted by the Danish Embassy, Vietnam’s Ministry of Construction, the National University of Civil Engineering and the University of Architecture Ho Chi Minh City. This is the second year the Danish Week has been held in Vietnam.

The week aims at gathering Vietnamese government officials, community planners, architects, urban planners and representatives of the private sector to exchange knowledge, experiences and insights with leading Danish experts in urban design and management and on that background to make recommendations for sustainable development of the major cities in Vietnam.
Anh Kiet
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