Investors in mired project call for decision

11:45 | 21/05/2015 Economy

After an almost 21 year wait, the Hanoi People’s Committee has finally assigned competent bodies to issue answers regarding the future of the Red River project.

Investors in mired project call for decision

According to Cheong Kun Hung, the second deputy general director of the Singaporean City Development Corporation (CDC) – an investor of the Red River project – the investors have demanded an answer from the Committee on the future of the project.

“We know that it is hard for us to implement our project, however we need an exact answer from the Committee,” Hung said.

The Red River project was given an investment certificate in 1994, but still remains suspended because of its perilous location between the dyke and the Red River. Meanwhile, according to the current Law on Dykes, no high-rise constructions can be built in this area, because it could badly impact the dyke system itself.

“We were told that we could not build a high-rise building in our project, but this limitation would be in contrast to things which were permitted on our original investment certificate and as a result, it would reduce our efficiency to zero,” Hung said.

“Therefore we have a very simple request to the committee – that this limitation is excluded from our project so we can implement the plans accordingly to which we had previously received approval,” he added.

According to Pham Van Khuong, deputy director of the Hanoi Planning and Investment Department, this is a particularly sensitive project.

“Hanoi is currently implementing the land zoning between the river and the dyke.”

Hanoi Deputy Chairman Nguyen Ngoc Tuan requested that competent bodies come up with an answer for the developer within May in order to work out a suitable solution for this project.

“The answers must be in detail – how many storeys high and to what scale will the project be permitted.”

Red River City is a joint venture between Singapore’s CDC and the domestic Urban Development Company. Its investment certificate was granted in 1994 with a capital investment of US$240 million, to build a modern complex of residential, offices and hotels.

In 2006-2007, Korean investors also proposed to build a US$7 billion project in the area between the Red River and its dyke.

Developers have proposed building a new 42 kilometre dyke on the river’s eastern side and upgrading the current 33.8km dyke on the river’s western side.  The plan envisions a new urban centre rising on either side of the river, an area of international financial buildings, high-class apartments and parks, and ample amounts of green space.

 The concept is modelled on the Republic of Korea’s combined flood control and land reclamation project implemented along the Han River in the Seoul megalopolis. 

However, the project has remained committed to paper only as the Law on Dykes forbids construction in this sensitive area.