HCMC to hire consultant to review safety of metro line’s diaphragm walls

  • by VNBUSINESS
  • December 29, 2018

The HCMC government plans to hire a consultant to look into the safety of the underground diaphragm walls along the city’s first metro line between the landmark Ben Thanh Market and the Opera House in District 1.

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Construction workers are seen in a metro line No 1 tunnel 

Vice chairman Tran Vinh Tuyen of the city was quoted by Thanh Nien newspaper as saying on Wednesday that the 19.7-kilometer Ben Thanh-Suoi Tien metro line, which requires a total investment of over VND47 trillion, is of considerable importance.

The city’s current and former leaders have made concerted efforts to make sure that demolition, site clearance and construction work are in line with its approved master plan, he added.

According to Tuyen, some problems have emerged, due to the project’slengthy execution and unexpected legal changes. These issues are related to established procedures and the authority needed to make adjustments to the project’s investment cost and design.

Ministries, other central agencies and the city government have actively worked together to tackle these problems to ensure the project can be completed on schedule, thereby improving infrastructure and reducing traffic congestion to some extent, Tuyen said.

He added that the HCMC Management Authority for Urban Railways (MAUR) has reduced the thickness of one diaphragm wall section by half a meter, compared with the original design of two meters. The 170-meter-long section is between Pasteur and Nam Ky Khoi Nghia streets.

Tuyen cited a report from MAUR as saying that the reduction in the diaphragm wall thickness had partly reduced the overall investment cost. In financial terms, the adjustment meets the requirements for transparency. However, the change did not follow the proper procedure.

“MAUR has been authorized to manage the project by the municipal People’s Committee. But if there are changes to the originally approved plan, MAUR should consult with the committee. Safety is very important,” he stressed.

He said MAUR had fully completed the consultancy and safety evaluation stages to adjust the thickness of the diaphragm walls.

However, owing to improper adjustments without the necessary authority and on the basis of reports by the relevant departments and agencies, the city government has decided to hire a consulting firm to conduct a comprehensive review.

The consultant will check the safety issues surrounding the adjustment to the original design. When the result of the review is available, the local government would release it, said the municipal vice chairman.

In a Facebook post on his personal page on December 25, MAUR director Le Nguyen Minh Quang cited a December 20 report from the State Audit Office of Vietnam as saying that the adjustment had saved some VND93 billion, equivalent to US$4 million, and had shortened the construction period, compared with that of the two-meter diaphragm walls, by five months.

 Source: Vietnamnet

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