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Hanoi bridge museum plans spark controversy

Long Bien Bridge, Hanoi, Vietnam


A VND4.68 trillion (US$227 million) plan proposed by architect Nguyen Nga to convert Hanoi’s century-old Long Bien Bridge into a contemporary art museum has met with resistance from the public and even other architects. [HanoiTimes.com.vn [1]]

Architects have wondered if it is a waste to spend almost VND5 trillion to turn a bridge that still plays an important role in transportation into a museum.

If Nga is allowed to go ahead with the plan, the bridge will no longer be used for rail traffic, and a new bridge will be built to replace it. A space will be created to exhibit old steam locomotives and cars that will be turned first into cafes and restaurants.

A contemporary art museum in the shape of a lotus will be built o­n the right bank.

ThanhNienNews.com [2] reported: …the project was well received by many architects and zoning experts at the conference. 

Nga said the works will help improve the living environment of Hanoians, and add more green to the capital’s urban space.

Nga has said if she gets approval to go ahead, she will not depend o­n Vietnamese government funding but will look to the French government and private donors.

Her interest in the bridge is not something new. She organized the two Long Bien Bridge festivals in 2009 and 2010.

The 2.5-km bridge was built in 1903 by French architects Daydé & Pillé, and was o­ne of the longest in Asia at the time.

Source hanoitimes.com.vn: Skepticism greets plan to turn Hanoi bridge into museum [1]

Images of Long Bien Bridge, Hanoi [3]