Rail News


November 12 , 2021

First metro stirs hope Vietnam can match regional peers

November 8, 2021 (Vietnam)

The first metro route Vietnam has stirred hopes that the country will soon catch up with its regional peers, popularize public transportation and reduce traffic congestion.

Experts, however remain cautious and skeptical, saying such optimism is unwarranted at the moment.

"If I close my eyes I can’t tell whether I’m on a metro train in another country or in Vietnam," said Tran Ngoc Quynh, one of the first passengers to use the Cat Linh – Ha Dong Metro Route after it began operating last Saturday.

Quynh, a 70-year-old engineer, couldn’t sleep the night before as he had been waiting for the metro to run for 10 years. His family and friends are among those who had been relocated during the land acquisition process for the project.

"The train shows that Vietnam is not far behind other countries in development. We are moving in the right direction."

The Cat Linh – Ha Dong Metro Route, the latest public transport addition in Hanoi, where 8.3 million people reside, has kindled hopes and desire among local residents that the city ups its public infrastructure to the level or other ASEAN countries.

Nguyen Huu Khanh, who lives one kilometer away from a metro station, said that he was thinking about making metro his main means of transportation to and from work.

"I arrived 10 minutes earlier than usual with the metro. There was no traffic jam, and it was warmer than riding the motorbike," said the 30-year-old, who works for a startup.

The experience is similar to that of Thailand where he had worked for a couple of years, Khanh said.

Several Southeast Asian countries have had a head start over Vietnam in establishing metro networks.


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