Hanoi’s downtown district of Hoan Kiem on January 21 partnered with the Livable Hanoi network to convert a waste dump into a new multi-functional public space for the residential com*-munity on the banks of the Red River.
The project was initiated by four organizations, including Think Playgrounds (TPG) social enterprise, Keep Hanoi Clean, Center for Environment and Community Research (CECR), and ECUE, in collaboration with local people.
Volunteers and locals clean up the garbage on the land. Photo: Trung Hung
Under the project, a number of activities were carried out, including the removal of more than 200 tons of garbage, training the community on waste management and reduction, domestic wastewater treatment before being discharged into the Red River, tree planting, the construction of children's playground and a road connecting the community with the green space.
All of the equipment of the playground is made from recycled materials.
Recycled playgrounds have become a familiar sight in Vietnam, especially in its outlying areas, where there are few spaces for children. They not only provide children a venue with fun games but also educate them on environmental protection.
Moreover, multi-functional spaces bring together people across communities and help ensure the inclusiveness of communities.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Nguyen Anh Quan, vice chairman of the Hoan Kiem district's People's Committee, said it was a very meaningful thing for his district, and the project was also in line with the Vietnam Law on Environmental Protection.
Delegates plant trees in the renovated space from the polluted land. Photo: Trung Hung
"The project has raised awareness and responsibility of the community in environmental protection as garbage is collected and wastewater treated. The residential community has green space and the air quality is improved. After more than two months, from an area polluted by garbage and wastewater, it has now become a clean and beautiful public space,” Quan said.
Le Quang Binh, the coordinator of the Livable Hanoi network, said the pilot project to turn 1,500 square meters of landfill into a green, clean and multifunctional space has given us a lot of hope and experience for the revival of other areas of the Red River.
“The project was successful because it created a platform for many individuals and organizations to join hands. Really, this is a social ecosystem where each party contributes a part based on its role and capacity to expand green space for Hanoi,” Binh stressed.
In addition to the contributions of many individuals who love Hanoi, the project is sponsored by the Embassy of Denmark in Vietnam, Ford Vietnam, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Dozens of Hanoi lovers have volunteered to clean up trash and plant trees, many businesses such as Ford Vietnam funded the road and Hoa Viet Environmental Engineering Joint Stock Company contributed bricks recycled from plastic waste to pave the way.
Moreover, the support of Hoan Kiem District and the Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment has helped solve difficulties in site clearance as well as mobilize the participation of grassroots mass organizations.
The land, which was once polluted by dumpsite has now become a green space. Photo: Trung Hung