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N-S Expy must cross country next tenure: PM

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HCMC – The Transport Ministry and the authorities of Ninh Binh, Thanh Hoa, Binh Thuan and Dong Nai provinces yesterday, September 30, broke ground for three sections of the North-South Expressway project, comprising Mai Son-National Highway 45, Vinh Hao-Phan Thiet and Phan Thiet-Dau Giay.

Addressing a ground-breaking ceremony for the Mai Son-National Highway 45 section held yesterday morning in Thanh Hoa, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc told the ministries of Transport, Science and Technology, Finance, and relevant agencies to make efforts to ensure the expressway will run through smoothly from the northern province of Lang Son to the southernmost province of Ca Mau in the next tenure, aiming to have at least 5,000 kilometers of expressway in the years to come.

The head of the Government also ordered the localities involved in the development of the expressway to create favorable conditions for contractors during the construction process. Local authorities have to jointly monitor the construction quality and progress.

Further, localities have to work out measures to connect industrial parks, economic zones with the expressway once it is to be completed, aiming to spur socio-economic growth and improve the quality of life among local residents, PM Phuc said.

The subprojects have been financed by the State budget and are scheduled for completion by the end of 2022.

The 63-kilometer-long Mai Son-National Highway 45 section will start from the northern province of Ninh Binh to the north-central province of Thanh Hoa. In the first phase, it will have four lanes and a maximum speed limit of 80 kilometers per hour, with a total investment of VND12.11 trillion. It will be expanded to six lanes and allow vehicles to travel at 120 kilometers per hour in the final phase.

The 100-kilometer-long Vinh Hao-Phan Thiet section will stretch from the Tuy Phong to the Ham Thuan Nam districts in south-central Binh Thuan Province, requiring a total of over VND10.8 trillion. It will also have four lanes and a maximum speed limit of 80 kilometers per hour in the first phase and will be expanded to six lanes with a designed speed limit of 120 kilometers per hour.

The VND12.5-trillion Phan Thiet-Dau Giay section will connect Binh Thuan with Dong Nai. The 99-kilometer-long road will have a maximum speed limit of 120 kilometers per hour and four lanes in the first phase, before being upgraded to six lanes.

Nguyen Ngoc Dong, Deputy Minister of Transport, said that the expanded National Highway No. 1 with four lanes has met transport demands and contributed to the socio-economic development of many localities. However, the road passes through densely populated areas, with vehicles travelling on the road at an average 40-60 kilometers per hour. It also poses a risk of road traffic injuries as it has mixed lanes for motorcycles and non-motorized vehicles.

Accordingly, the North-South Expressway, once completed, is expected to address such issues facing National Highway No. 1. The expressway has a maximum speed limit of 80-120 kilometers per hour and is off-limits to motorcycles.

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