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|$300 million Ben Thanh underground trade centre looks for investors|
The delays in construction will make it impossible to complete the project, along with Metro Line No.1 (Ben Thanh-Suoi Tien) at the same time, by the end of 2021. In case the underground trade centre is developed at the same time as Package 1a of Metro Line No.1, the road and surrounding land will not have to be dug up and filled twice, and the metro lines operations will not be hindered.
The project was approved for development since 2016, with the investment capital of VND6.8 trillion ($295.65 million), which would be mobilised from official development assistance (ODA). At the time, Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee worked with the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the Ministry of Construction, as well as the Ministry of Finance to build implementation plans to submit to the prime minister for approval.
In order to accelerate the construction, in September last year, Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee assigned the Department of Planning and Architecture to organise an international bid to select a project proposal, with the requirement that the construction of both the trade centre and Metro No.1 would be completed by the end of 2021.
At the same time, the joint venture of Toshin Development Co., Ltd., JOIN, Nikken Sekkei, and Osaka Chikagai was picked by the People's Committee as the developer, but no new information has been posted mentioning this joint venture since then.
Ben Thanh underground trade centre will be located under Quach Thi Trang Square, at the first basement (B1) of Ben Thanh Metro station, 500 metres under District 1’s Le Loi Street. The project will be directly under Ben Thanh market and stretch all the way to Ho Chi Minh City's Municipal Theatre. It will have an area of around 45,000 square metres, including an 18,100sq.m trade centre and 21,500sq.m of corridors and underground square.