Vietnam: Livable Cities Project

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Vietnam: Livable Cities Project

Project

Description

In 2021, Vietnam witnessedanother difficult year in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic. Although the pandemic has been somewhat controlled in the country, there have been local waves of domestic transmission and local lockdowns every few months and Vietnam has been facing severe economic hardship. However, the pandemic forced Vietnam to rethink the nature of urban space and plan for more sustainable, resilient and livable cities in order to get the country back on track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In urban communities, residents and professionals appreciate public spaces in a way they have never before, which presents opportunities to support people in becoming more involved in their neighbourhoods. In tourism cities like HoiAn, which is used to tourism being the main driver of its policy aims, the absence of tourists has forced the Government to re-direct their public spaces and transportation policy to target local residents. COVID-19 has also changed people’s diets and they are more aware of the importance of a resilient food system in which urban food markets play an important role.

Little girl standing in front of a mural at a redesigned space in Hanoi
Little girl standing in front of a mural at a redesigned space in Hanoi

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, as well as 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 Vietnam and is now 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. In addition, HBV is working with the Hoi An City government to develop an active transportation master plan that will support and encourage local residents to walk and cycle throughout the city. Finally, HBV is working with the Ho Chi Minh City government and partners on a project to increase pedestrian safety in the city.

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.

Project

Expected Results

Expected results include increased numbers of:

  • Increased number of people using open public spaces
  • Increased number of quality improvements to open public spaces
  • Increased number of open public spaces
  • Increased number of local public markets saved
  • Increased number of quality improvements to local public markets
  • Increased number of people who can easily access fruits and vegetables
  • Increased number of streets that support walking and cycling
  • Increased number of people who can walk or cycle to their destination, such as transit.

Project

Achieved Outcomes

Key successes to date include:

  • Five new mobile/pop-up playgrounds were created and the project benefited 500 children, helping them to recover from the social isolation experienced during the COVID-19 lockdowns.
  • Increased the safety of cyclists in Hoi An by improving the cycling infrastructure and introducing a bicycle sharing program.
  • The Hoi An Parks Master Plan 2015-2020, which was a critical document that protected public spaces in the city.
  • 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.

Project

Publications

Livable Cities in Vietnam Brochure

Livable Cities in Vietnam Brochure

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Other
Languages: English
The Eye at City Level: A vision for wet markets in Hanoi

The Eye at City Level: A vision for wet markets in Hanoi

Author: Steve Davie and Tran Thi Kieu Thanh Ha
Regions: Asia
Type: Book
Languages: English
Open Public Space and the Private Sector: A toolkit for overcoming barriers and best practices

Open Public Space and the Private Sector: A toolkit for overcoming barriers and best practices

Author: Aaron Vansintjan
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
The Role of the Private Sector in the Production of Open Public Spaces in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City

The Role of the Private Sector in the Production of Open Public Spaces in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City

Author: Danielle Labbé, Clément Musil, Trần Thị Mai Thoa
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
Asian Wet Markets Re-Examined: Market Cities as a Force for Investment and Renewal

Asian Wet Markets Re-Examined: Market Cities as a Force for Investment and Renewal

Author: Steve Davies, Project for Public Spaces
Regions: Global
Type: Other
Languages: English
Campaigning to save market women's livelihoods in Hanoi: experience from HealthBridge

Campaigning to save market women's livelihoods in Hanoi: experience from HealthBridge

Author: Kristie Daniel, et al; Gender & Development
Regions: Asia
Type: Journal Article
Languages: English
Summary of the Hoian Public Spaces Master Plan

Summary of the Hoian Public Spaces Master Plan

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Other Report
Languages: English
Hoi An Public Spaces

Hoi An Public Spaces

Author: Editors: Daniel K, Efroymson D and Nguyen PH/ HealthBridge Vietnam, Action for the City
Regions: Asia
Type: Progress Report
Languages: English
Hanoi Youth Public Spaces:  Policy Brief

Hanoi Youth Public Spaces: Policy Brief

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam, Institut national de la recherche scientifique, Vietnamese Academy of Social Sciences
Regions: Asia
Type: Other Report
Languages: English
Building Neighbourhood Playgrounds:  Lessons from the Field

Building Neighbourhood Playgrounds: Lessons from the Field

Author: Action Centre for City Development
Regions: Asia
Type: Other
Languages: English
Kinh nghiệm quốc tế: Huy động tư nhân tham gia phát triển và quản lý không gian công cộng

Kinh nghiệm quốc tế: Huy động tư nhân tham gia phát triển và quản lý không gian công cộng

Author: HealthBridge, Chaire de recherche du Canada en urbanisation durable dans le Sud Global, Observatoire, Université de Montreal, Urban Development Research& Consulting
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: Vietnamese
Tóm tắt chính sách: Vai trò của khu vực tư nhân trong phát triển không gian công cộng đô thị ở Việt Nam

Tóm tắt chính sách: Vai trò của khu vực tư nhân trong phát triển không gian công cộng đô thị ở Việt Nam

Author: HealthBridge, Chaire de recherche du Canada en urbanisation durable dans le Sud Global, Observatoire, Université de Montreal, Urban Development Research& Consulting
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: Vietnamese
The Sidewalk Diet: Street Markets and Fresh Food Access in Central Hanoi

The Sidewalk Diet: Street Markets and Fresh Food Access in Central Hanoi

Author: Claudia Atomei
Regions: Asia
Type: Other Report
Languages: English

Liveable streets in Hanoi: A principal component analysis

Author: Peter Sanders, Mark Zuidgeest, and Karst Geursd
Regions: Asia
Type: Journal Article
Languages: English

Project

Reports

Vietnam Livable Cities Program Summary Report 2020-2021

Vietnam Livable Cities Program Summary Report 2020-2021

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
Vietnam Livable Cities Program 2019-2020 Summary Report

Vietnam Livable Cities Program 2019-2020 Summary Report

Author: HealthBridge
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
COVID-Proofing Public Spaces in Three Cities: Summary Report

COVID-Proofing Public Spaces in Three Cities: Summary Report

Author: HealthBridge
Regions: Global
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
Creating Public Spaces in Tan Mai Ward, Hanoi

Creating Public Spaces in Tan Mai Ward, Hanoi

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
Trang Keo Park

Trang Keo Park

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Final Report
Languages: English
Livable Cities Vietnam Final Narrative report 2016-2017

Livable Cities Vietnam Final Narrative report 2016-2017

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Progress Report
Languages: English
Vietnam Final Narrative Report July 2016

Vietnam Final Narrative Report July 2016

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Progress Report
Languages: English
Livable Cities Project Vietnam Final Report 2014-2015

Livable Cities Project Vietnam Final Report 2014-2015

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Progress Report
Languages: English
Livable Cities Project Vietnam, Final Narrative Report, 2013-14

Livable Cities Project Vietnam, Final Narrative Report, 2013-14

Author: HealthBridge Vietnam
Regions: Asia
Type: Progress Report
Languages: English