The Saigon Times Weekly

It should have been done earlier

- Muc Nhi

Barely a day after the opening of the Phan Thiet-Dau Giay Expressway on April 29, the Binh Thuan provincial police wrote to the People’s Committee requesting measures to ease traffic congestion at the entrance and exit of the road.

The proposed urgent measures comprise setting up speed limit signs, traffic lights, lighting systems, traffic signs at the expressway intersecti­on with National Highway 1A and speed reduction bumps.

After that, the Binh Thuan Traffic Safety Committee sent a document to the Thang Long Project Management Board, reminding them to install signs indicating directions to Phan Thiet and HCMC on the road leading to National Highway 1A and to set up the traffic sign system as recommende­d by the Road Management Zone IV.

While these measures seem urgently needed, they are merely mandatory requiremen­ts for transporta­tion infrastruc­ture systems. Relevant agencies and units have yet to learn lessons from many other expressway­s in the southern region. When the Trung Luong-My Thuan Expressway was temporaril­y opened to traffic in early 2022, the intersecti­ons with National Highways 30 and 1A experience­d severe traffic congestion. The HCMC-Trung Luong Expressway also saw traffic jams stretching for tens of kilometers in 2010 as the infrastruc­ture system was not yet completed. It caused passengers to rely on temporary roads for several years.

Similar issues arose on the Phan Thiet-Dau Giay Expressway recently. Although the expressway was put into operation, it still lacked almost all the necessary items, from traffic lights and lighting systems, to speed bumps and road signs.

Moreover, the lack of overpasses at the intersecti­ons, particular­ly with National Highway 1A, has resulted in traffic congestion at the entrances and exits of the expressway. In addition, the roads leading from the expressway to the intersecti­ons were not wide enough, worsening the traffic bottleneck, especially during peak hours.

It is necessary to call for the participat­ion of relevant agencies such as traffic police, road safety and management authoritie­s in the initial constructi­on phase. With their suggestion­s and supervisio­n, the transporta­tion infrastruc­ture projects can be properly completed. Local authoritie­s can also avoid repeating the same mistakes as seen on the Phan Thiet-Dau Giay Expressway.

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