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Saigon Pilots Park-and-Ride Scheme at Ham Nghi Central Bus Terminal

Authorities hope the parking facility will increase convenience for bus riders.

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transport recently approved a proposal from the city’s Public Transport Management and Operation Center to open a free-of-charge parking lot for motorbikes and bicycles on the sidewalk along Ham Nghi Street, where the city’s main bus stations are located, Tuoi Tre reports.

The space, which is reserved for bus users, will be located behind the Cao Thang Technical College on the intersection between Nam Ky Khoi Nghia and Pasteur streets. Authorities say that the parking lot is an effort to make the transition between different modes of transport easier, which will help encourage residents to use public transport more often and thus alleviate traffic congestion.

The Ham Nghi bus terminal is one of the city’s busiest stations, serving as the main stop for 33 bus routes across Saigon. It went into operation in December 2017, replacing Ben Thanh station, which was demolished in April the same year to pave way for metro construction.

Many proposals and measures have been put forward to increase bus ridership and public transport use in general, such as piloting smart cards as a replacement for cash and single-use tickets or a proposal for minibuses that run inside hẻms to reduce the average distance hẻm dwellers must walk.

The city’s public transport infrastructure currently satisfies less than 10% of mobility demands. It’s still not clear if the aforementioned plans and proposals would help the city achieve its target to have public transport serve 15-20% of Saigon’s population in 2020.