Compendium

Vinhomes Riverside

Vinhomes Riverside is one of the few Vietnamese eco-neighborhoods to have received the Vietnam Green Architecture Award in 2012. The environmental dimension is favored compared to the other dimensions of sustainable development, as it is clearly stated through the translation of “eco-neighborhood” in Vietnamese, “khu đô thị sinh thai”, which literally means “ecological urban area”. Inspired by the plan of Venice (Italy), built on a lagoon with an intertwining of islets and canals, this district is intended to offer a haven of peace to wealthy Vietnamese residents and is defined as a “gated community”. This project is the result of private companies development strategies, grouped through the Vingroup conglomerate, to develop a high-end and environmentally friendly real estate portfolio.

Dates of completion2008-2016
Surface areaClosed khu do thi moi (KDTM) district, consisting of 3 mega blocks and a total area of 183.5 hectares
LocalizationLong Biên, Hanoi, Vietnam
Project descriptionUrban extension project on the outskirts of Hanoi
– About 1,500 residential villas
– 95,000 m of leisure space (gymnasium and spa, restaurants, cinema, golf, shopping centre)
– Two 57,000 m2 primary and secondary school campuses
– 60 hectares of semi-private parks
– 110 hectares of canals and waterways
Certification Vietnam Green Architecture award 2012

Context

Vinhomes Riverside is part of the Long Bien district or “quận”, which became part of Hanoi in 2003. On the East of the Red River, the former annexed city of Longbian, then renamed Long Bien, has been undergoing accelerated urbanization following the development of Hanoi since the 2000s. This urbanization is largely due to the 1986 Đổi Mới policy, established to develop a “socialist-oriented market economy”. The focus is now on creating a market economy for different sectors, including real estate. Since the early 1990s, several Khu đô thị mới (KDTM) or “new urbanization zones” have then been developed. It is in this context that the Vinhomes Riverside development project, originally called Vincom Village, is designed and built.

Stakeholders

Hanoi City People’s Committee, the executive body of the Municipal People’s Council: validation of the urban design Master Plan provided by private stakeholders and of the investments 

Association between an investor, JSC Investment Corporation and Sai Dong Urban Development, a subsidiary of Vingroup Corporation

Designers: The architecture company ACT, specialized in ecological projects, the architects of the Archipel company for the design and coordination of the development project, French Design Company Limited and SENA for interior design. 

Technical consulting firms: TED and Vietnam Construction Consultant Corporation 

No citizen consultation

Sustainable development

Vinhomes Riverside is based on sustainable development strategies and therefore received the HKTS Vietnam Green Architecture Award. However, these strategies deserved to be questioned. Design principles leading to the reduction of energy consumption and the implementation of renewable energy are non-existent, or at least not described in the literature. The water is pumped into the Duong River and is not subject to any special treatment. It is this same water that serves the district’s multiple canals, in a closed circuit, before being discharged back into the river. As for the rest of Hanoi, the water distributed to the homes is not drinkable. The selective sorting of waste, on the other hand, is practiced in the district. With regard to the enhancement of biodiversity, particular attention was paid to the species of plants planted in the district, and fish larvae are discharged into the water of the canals every year during a special ceremony. This practice contributes however very modestly to the enhancement of biodiversity in the canals. The green spaces, including the park and canals, are maintained in a semi-natural manner and cover nearly 80% of the total area of the district.

The prohibitive price of the villas, which are not accessible to the Vietnamese middle and working classes, generates an obvious lack of social diversity in the neighborhood. In fact, to protect this “gated-community”, several security systems are provided within the blocks and at their entrances. Nevertheless, the neighborhood presents some community infrastructure, which, if not public, provides a minimum number of services. Looking at the economic dimension, the district presents many activities related to the tertiary sector, such as a shopping centre, several restaurants, office space and several leisure services. Finally, the district has many delineated cycle paths and a bus line  (3B), which connects the centre of Hanoi to Long Bien. However, the main modes of transport remain the car and motorcycle, the preferred means of transport in Vietnam.

Researchers working on this project

Claire Doussard