Road Upgrades Slated Ahead Of Asean Summit

Vientiane authorities will upgrade roads in the city centre as part of preparations for Laos’ hosting of the Asean Summit next year.

Director of the Vientiane Public Works and Transport Department, Mr Dedsongkham Thammavong, told Vientiane Times on Friday the upgrade will be funded through a loan from China amounting to 60 million yuan (about 78.73 billion kip).

Under the project, a 2km section of road between the Dongdok and Tanmixay traffic lights will be resurfaced with concrete and widened to 22 metres, with the work contracted to a Chinese company.

The project is currently at the design and costing stage. Construction could begin at the end of this year and will be co mplete before the two Asean summits take place in November 2016.

Authorities will also improve other roads and drainage systems in the city centre where hotels and other facilities will be used for the summits.

Vientiane has long been challenged when it comes to addressing the city’s poor drainage system. In the wet season, flooding is common and downpours not only impact on traffic flow but also cause further damage to road surfaces.

Improved roads will spur development and ease traffic congestion.

Authorities will also improve roads that direct traffic flow out of the city centre so there will be fewer vehicles on the roads that summit delegates are likely to use.

Infrastructure improvement is of significant importance for the development of Laos, with road building essential to reduce traffic congestion in urban areas.

Laos first assumed chairmanship of Asean in 2004 when it hosted the 10th Asean Summit and its related meetings. At that time, many new amenities were built to accommodate the summit.

Laos’ second chairmanship of Asean will take place shortly after the bloc establishes the Asean Community at the end of this year.

The 28th Asean Summit will focus on issues pertaining to Asean, while the 29th will discuss issues related to Asean’s external relations and regional and international issues.

As chair of the regional bloc, Laos will host the two summits back to back.

Source: Vientiane Times

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