Although Bui Vien pedestrian-only street in the backpacker’s area in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City has yet to be officially opened, thousands of local youths and foreign tourists still rushed to the area on two weekend nights to enjoy dining and entertainment services and witness the animated atmosphere of the street.
About Bui Vien walking street
Ho Chi Minh City’s famous Bui Vien Street, located in the heart of the city’s ‘backpacker area’, is set to become a pedestrian-only thoroughfare on weekend evenings from the middle of next month.
All vehicles are banned from moving onto the pedestrian street from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday to ensure the safety for visitors.
Earlier, the authorities of District 1 announced that the pedestrian street would not be inaugurated on July 15 as originally scheduled as the sidewalks, underground power and telecom cables, and water pipelines remain unfinished.
According to a source from the Office of the HCMC People’s Committee, the pedestrian street is slated to be opened for the public on August 19.
Currently, dozens of construction workers are racing against time to complete the construction of Bui Vien Street in preparation for the forthcoming opening day.
When in place, the street will be made pedestrian-only from 7 p.m to 2 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Art shows will be held from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. to entertain domestic and foreign visitors apart from dining services. The shows will themed in the spirit of street art, Vice-chairman Tuyen elaborated, adding that tourists will also be permitted to perform.
The Department of Tourism has provided training for vendors and household business owners in the area to help them improve sale and service skills in an effort to attract a large number of tourists.
According to a report of District 1, everyday more than 500 tourists visit the backpacker’s quarter surrounded by Pham Ngu Lao, Bui Vien and De Tham streets. The figure could amount to 2,000 on its busiest days.
Bui Vien walking street to open on August 19
Bui Vien walking street is scheduled to finish the upgrade process on August 10 and it will be put into operation nine days later. The information was issued by the Chairman of the District 1 People’s Committee Tran The Thuan.
The walking street covering 1.4 kilometers designed with granite pavement, plastic carpet, tree tanks and water discharge system for the rainy season.
Walking in the street, pedestrians will enjoy free services as public toilet, Wi-Fi, information provision and other assistance. “The time reserved for certain shows will be shorter. What really matters is the quality of the performance,” he stated.
According to Nguyen Thi Thu Huong, vice-chairwoman of the People’s Committee in District 1, local residents have been asked for their feedback on the walking street project and have been informed of the current plan.
The administration has also earmarked VND10.8 billion (US$476,572) for renovating and covering the sidewalks of Bui Vien Street with granite tiles, Huong continued, adding that the work will be finished in September.
Vice-chairman Tuyen praised District 1’s administration on their efforts to improve the area; however, they reiterated that the walking street must open in July instead of September.
The official also suggested that local authorities pay attention to families who will be affected by the project.
“Despite support from the majority, we cannot overlook opposing opinions. People should be encouraged to facilitate the plan rather than be forced to do so,” he remarked.
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