05/09/2017 – The Urbanization of Ho Chi Minh City

For my second day in Ho Chi Minh City, the focus was on urban planning and development. In the morning, I attended a lecture at UEF about the history of Ho Chi Minh City and the modern urbanization that is taking place. In the afternoon, I visited Phu My Hung Development, a corporation that completes urban projects in a section of the city.

The development in Phu My Hung’s area of the city is occurring at a shockingly fast rate, and the area is much more consistent in its modernization than what else I have seen of Ho Chi Minh City. Consequently, this area of the city is much more expensive to reside in, and is mainly for wealthier businessmen and investors. The high price tag on this area is also the result of the large amount of loans Phu My Hung must take out in order to complete its projects. All of its funding comes from either the Vietnamese government or from foreign investors, so it must charge a high price, at least at this stage, in order to pay off its debts. Phu My Hung has seen success in recent years following the passage of more flexible laws regarding the ownership of property by citizens and foreigners.

Phu My Hung’s main environmental contribution is its installation of waste drainage systems; however, outside of this, it does not seem to do much to limit its impact on the environment. It still has a large amount of land to develop on, and will continue to quickly build on the natural area.

The urbanization of Ho Chi Minh City is an example of the extreme level of development that is occurring throughout Vietnam. Phu My Hung’s swift and thorough completion of its projects and its plans to build much more are just one company’s actions that indicate that Ho Chi Minh City is likely in the midst of one of the fastest periods of growth it will see.

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