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Mar 09, 2023 / 13:46

Officials worry Ring Road 4 project could be delayed further

The implementation of the project is hampered by regulatory and land clearance obstacles.

Stagnant land clearance may delay the inauguration of the Ring Road 4 - Hanoi Capital Region project, say reports of the municipal authorities of Hanoi, Bac Ninh and Hung Yen.

The graphics show Ring Road 4 (blue line) which links Hanoi and the neighboring provinces of Bac Ninh and Hung Yen. Photo: The Hanoi Times

As planned, Hanoi and the provinces of Bac Ninh and Hung Yen hope to start the construction of Ring Road 4 - Hanoi Capital Region on June 30.

By that date, the three localities are expected to have cleared and secured the land for the project.

However, the current progress shows that there is still a lot of work to be done in all three localities. The main obstacle is the progress of land clearing.

Reports from Hanoi municipal authorities on March 7 showed that the capital has cleared one-third of the total 796,766 hectares of land and relocated 49% of nearly 11,700 graves.

In addition, Hanoi authorities have approved the disbursement of nearly VND2.5 trillion (US$105.7 million) for land clearance and residential relocation.

Hung Yen Province will have to clear nearly 264 hectares of land belonging to 843 families and relocate more than 3,300 graves and 15 high-voltage transmission towers.

The province will need about 50 hectares of land to build new houses and resettle local residents. The total cost of land clearance is estimated at nearly VND6 trillion (US$253.7 million), exceeding the budget approved by the National Assembly for Hung Yen Province by VND2.2 trillion (US$93 million).

To date, Hung Yen has advanced VND42 billion (US$1.8 million) to local authorities to remove one-fifth of all graves, build new cemeteries, and carry out other activities.

In Bac Ninh Province, about 389 hectares of land must be cleared and nearly 3,200 graves moved to prepare the ground. The province has not paid local residents for grave relocation, land clearance, and resettlement.

In addition to delayed land clearance, unapproved feasibility reports also threaten the project's implementation.

The project consists of three major modules divided into seven sub-projects, focusing on land clearance and resettlement of local residents, and construction of frontage roads and highways.

The Bac Ninh provincial authorities should have approved these projects in January 2023, and their delays could affect the construction of the bypass, which is scheduled to start in June 2023.

Meanwhile, Hanoi authorities have approved the feasibility report of the project to facilitate land clearance and resettlement of local residents worth VND13.37 trillion (US$565.3 million) and the feasibility report of the project to construct the service road worth VND5.4 trillion (US$228.3 million).

Dinh Tien Dung, secretary of the Hanoi Party Committee and chairman of the project's steering committee, urged the provinces of Bac Ninh and Hung Yen to do a better job in resolving land clearance issues and requisitioning the land as planned.

He also asked the provincial and local authorities of Bac Ninh and Hung Yen to ensure the best interests and benefits of the local people.

Dinh Tien Dung, Secretary of the Hanoi Party Committee and Chairman of the Ring Road 4 Project Steering Committee, speaks at the meeting on March 8. Photo: The Hanoi Times

"The sooner the project starts, the better we will save our budget, the better opportunities will come, and the better local people will settle down," he said at a meeting on the Ring Road 4 project.

The Party Secretary of Hanoi agreed with the proposal of the three localities to increase funding for the sub-projects that may have cost overruns.

At the meeting, Mr. Tran Quoc Van, Chairman of the Hung Yen Provincial People's Committee, said that the province has submitted the feasibility report on the construction of the service roads to the Ministries of Construction, Industry and Trade, and Natural Resources and Environment and relevant agencies for review and approval.

Nguyen Huu Nghia, Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, stated that the main obstacles are the assessment and approval of the Environmental Impact Report, land clearing, and resettlement of local residents.

Nguyen Huong Giang, Chairman of the Bac Ninh Provincial People's Committee, urged the Project Steering Committee to have a specific plan and schedule for each activity and to organize regular meetings to review the progress of the activities.

Nguyen Anh Tuan, Secretary of the Bac Ninh Provincial Party Committee, pledged that the province will complete land clearing by June 30 so that the construction of Ring Road 4 - Hanoi Capital Region can kick off soon.

Ring Road 4 - Hanoi Capital Region runs through Hanoi and the provinces of Hung Yen and Bac Ninh with a total length of 112.8 kilometers.

The length of the ring road in Hanoi is 58.2 kilometers, in Bac Ninh 25.6 kilometers, and in Hung Yen 19.3 kilometers, plus a link of nearly 10 kilometers.

The Ring Road 4 - Hanoi Capital Region will link the Hanoi-Lao Cai Expressway with the Noi Bai-Ha Long Highway, completing the highway network in the Red River Delta region.

The total investment for the project is more than VND85.8 trillion (US$3.63 billion). The project is expected to be completed in 2026 and fully operational in 2027.