Vietnam: Livable Cities Project
HealthBridge Vietnam (HBV) focuses on making urban neighbourhoods more livable and conducive to healthy lifestyles. Its three main areas of work are:
Access to Parks and Public Spaces – The number of safe, accessible and fun public spaces in Vietnamese cities has been steadily decreasing, while the public is increasingly demanding that governments create and maintain public spaces. However, without a clear strategic vision, many city governments lack the resources and capacity to develop public spaces to meet these demands. HBV’s activities include research and pilot projects, working with local groups and officials in the cities of Hanoi, Hoi An and Hue to develop clear strategies for developing and maintaining public spaces.
Access to Healthy Transportation – Motorcycle use has rapidly become the main mode of transportation in Hanoi and the most common way to take primary school children to and from school. HBV, with local partners in Hanoi, is working to develop safe routes with the goal that more children will be walking to school on a regular basis.
Preserving Local Public Markets – As a result of increasing modernization, the number of local public markets in Hanoi has been steadily decreasing. They are being replaced by supermarkets, shopping malls and commercial centres, resulting in decreased access to fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the city, especially for the urban poor. HBV’s activities including raising awareness among decision-makers about the important role that fresh markets play in the health and economy of the city. Research, campaigns and workshops are being organized to create the support necessary to protect and preserve the local public markets.
Key successes to date include:
- Development of the HoiAn Parks Master Plan, which will see 79 new playspaces for children by 2020 and ensure that every child can walk to a playground close to home;
- In 2013 the Hanoi government announced they would stop replacing markets with commercial centres. We estimate that approximately 2700 vendors’ livelihoods were saved and the approximately 279,000 people who shop at these markets continue to be able to buy healthy fresh food close to home;
- A pilot of the ASRTS in Hanoi resulted in a 650 percent increase in the number of students walking to school in the morning.
- Action centre for city development
- Urban Development Agency, Ministry of Construction
- Vietnam Women’s Museum
- Fresh Studio
- Hue Planning Institute
- Vietnam Urban Planning and Development Association
- Institute National de Recherche Scienctifique de Québec
- Institute of Sociology
Expected results include increased numbers of:
- Pedestrian improvements;
- Safe routes to school;
- Children walking to school;
- Policies on parks and public spaces at the city level;
- Parks, and improved quality of parks;
- Children playing in parks;
- Girls playing in parks, and
- A decreased number of fresh markets being redeveloped.
Hanoi at a Cross-Roads: Streets for People or Cars?
An introduction to a practical framework to support healthy public transit, which can be adopted for Hanoi: the 3D approach
Summary – English | Vietnamese
Hanoi - Fresh markets, a way of life and public health under threat, HealthBridge. Presented as Key-Note lecture at Public Forum “Public Markets in the Corporate City” in Hanoi March 2011. Published in Vietnamese
Urban Planning Journal (Tap Chi Xay Dung) 2011
Summary – English | Vietnamese
Full Document – English
Urban development trends in Hanoi & impact on ways of life, public health and happiness. Livability from a Health Perspective, HealthBridge. Presented at Conference: Hanoi Millennium – City Past and Future Organized by UN-Habitat and Global Research Center Hawaii, 12-13 October 2010, Hanoi. Published in Vietnamese Urban Planning Journal (Tap Chi Xay Dung) 2010 - English
Sanders, P., Zuidgeest, M., and Geursd, K. Liveable streets in Hanoi: A principal component analysis. Habitat International, 2015.
Daniel, K. et. al. Campaigning to save market women's livelihoods in Hanoi: experience from HealthBridge. Gender and Development, 2015.
Project brochure, in Vietnamese - Giới thiệu Chương trình Thành phố Sống tốt tại Việt Nam