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Deterioration threatens Dalat-Trai Mat railway

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Lam Dong Province’s authorities have raised concerns about the deteriorating conditions of the seven-km Dalat-Trai Mat railway, a vital route for tourists enjoying scenic rides. The state of disrepair poses a significant risk to traffic safety.

To address this issue and revitalize this historic railway, authorities have presented an upgrade plan for the railway to the Ministry of Transport. The objective is to ensure the safety of train operations and attract tourists to the charming city of Dalat.

The Dalat-Trai Mat railway is a part of the Thap Cham-Dalat railway route, distinguished as one of the world’s first two mountain-climbing rack railways. Construction began in 1908 and took 24 years to complete, finishing in 1932. Unfortunately, the railway had to be temporarily closed in 1968 due to wartime conditions. It wasn’t until 1991 that the Dalat-Trai Mat section resumed operations, primarily for sightseeing purposes, covering a scenic route of around seven kilometers.

Earlier this year, a company submitted a pre-feasibility study report to the Ministry of Transport, seeking approval to restore the entire Thap Chap-Dalat railway route. The project is estimated to cost VND25,000 billion and will be carried out through a public-private partnership.

The proposed 83.5-km railway route will comprise 16 stations, passing through Phan Rang City, Ninh Son District in Ninh Thuan Province, before reaching Dalat City in Lam Dong. If approved, work on the project will commence in January 2025 and conclude in June 2029, followed by a testing phase from June to December 2029.

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