13/08/2010 | 10:22:37

Hanoi anniversary projects polluting city, say inspectors

About 70 percent of construction projects for the Thang Long-Hanoi 1,000th anniversary encroach onto pavements and cause serious pollution, reports municipal Construction Department director Vu Van Mam.

The infringements were revealed after inspectors checked almost 20 inner-city projects, he said.

The resulting litter and dust was annoying many citizens.

The director said city regulations stipulated that project developers could use the pavements for building materials between 10pm and 6am but then had to leave them clean for pedestrians.

Instead, their workers left an abundance of illegal barriers and temporary tents with pavements destroyed to install pipes.

An example was a project in Ba Trieu street .

There, the developer had been fined 5 million VND (263 USD) and required to remove the pipes.

"These developers should be condemned for their bad behaviour," the director said.

"If they honoured the regulations, contractors and workers would, in turn, care about surrounding environment.

"Inspectors make regular checks and require the contractors to repair the damage but some still ignore the instructions and prefer to pay the fines."

The Infrastructure Development and Construction Joint Stock Company, which had failed to install safety lamps and allowed its work to encroach the pavement, had ignored repeated requests for payment of its fines.

The director blamed a shortage of inspectors, his department has almost 30, and the failure of local authorities to enforce the rules for the litter and pollution.

His department had proposed that relevant authorities refuse to allow offenders to hire pavement space and impose fines of between 15-20 million VND (789-1,052 USD) for any transgressions, he said.

The department would continue to inspect the laying of underground cable and construction work until Monday, August 30.

Ensuring quality and progress as well as ensuring limited environmental pollution and encroachment would be the criteria for the inspections.

Hanoi has spent 1 trillion VND (52.6 million USD) on ten construction projects for the anniversary which falls on Sunday, October 10./.

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