|(Photo: Hoai An)
Ba Ria-Vung Tau’s development strategy identifies 5 sectors - industry, seaports, port logistics, tourism, and high-tech agriculture – as particularly important for local growth.
In recent years, it has pursued investment selectively, ready to refuse investment projects worth billions of USD if they harm the environment or can’t meet sustainable development criteria.
The recent planning of coastal cities has involved environment impact studies, practical socio-economic orientations, industrial planning, regional planning, and land-use planning for each locality.
Mai Trung Hung, Deputy Director of the provincial Construction Department, said Ba Ria-Vung Tau has paid particular attention land use adjacent to the sea.
“Many things remain to be reviewed and adjusted. The use of land reserves and beach corridors is still inappropriate, for example. And the impact on scenery and environment of the construction of coastal roads still has to be discussed,” said Hung.
According to Tran Ngoc Chinh, Chairman of the Vietnam Urban Planning and Development Association, the Ba Ria-Vung Tau authorities have been working on detailed plans to make the province’s marine economy even stronger.
All urban planning and coastal city development must be in line with the national economic requirements, especially in regard to climate change and sea level rise.
Chinh said the new coastal architecture built over the past few years has altered the face of coastal urban areas in Ba Ria-Vung Tau but the province still needs to work out better plans for using public space along the beaches and for attracting the right investments.
Chinh added “Coastal urban areas should not all be the same. Each should be developed according to its geographical, economic, historical, and cultural characteristics, as well as its tourism or industrial advantages. We must take these things into careful consideration for every place.”
Dr. Le Quoc Hung, Deputy Director of the Southern Institute for Spatial Planning, underscored the importance of a long-term vision for coastal development in Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Each coastal city needs its own development strategy. A coastal urban area is not necessarily a tourist city, but can be built with other key functions, thus forming a diverse network of coastal cities.
Urban planners say Ba Ria-Vung Tau needs a strategic vision for the next 20 to 30 years.
Nguyen Dinh Trung, Chairman of the Hung Thinh Group, has proposed building a bridge to connect Go Gang and Long Son and reduce traffic on national highway 51.
“This doesn’t mean we have to build a bridge right now. It can be done in 30 years but we must include it in our planning. Such a bridge will give us two routes leading to Vung Tau – one via national highway 51 and the other via the bridge,” said Trung.