Ninh Kieu District has invested in a number of activities to attract tourists as well as the locals such as the establishment of Ninh Kieu night market and street vendors, the renovation of Ninh Kieu park, and Hau river park, etc. On that basis, the Walking Street is built to connect existing spaces and enhance community activities, thus contributing to making Ninh Kieu Wharf a highlight for tourism. Moreover, the Walking Street is also a unique cultural feature of Tay Do land (Can Tho city), opens up new trade opportunities, promotes tourism in Ninh Kieu district in particular, and Can Tho city, in general, to be worthy of being the hub of the Mekong Delta region.
According to the design, the Walking Street is located at Hai Ba Trung street, with cultural, artistic, and commercial activities and services (it’s located from the intersection of Hai Ba Trung and Nguyen An Ninh streets to the intersection of Hai Ba Trung and Ngo Gia Tu streets, Ninh Kieu park).
The Walking Street is divided into 3 sections. Section 1 (Nguyen An Ninh street, Hai Ba Trung street, Ngo Quyen street) includes shops, eateries, restaurants, Southern folk music performances, etc. Section 2 (near the statue of Uncle Ho at Ninh Kieu park) includes traditional activities such as incense offering, public ceremonies to pay tribute to Uncle Ho on holidays and anniversaries, and so on. Section 3 (from the beginning of Thu Khoa Huan street to the pedestrian bridge) includes cultural activities, arts, events, festivals, entertainment, folk games, street magic performance, etc. Funding for the implementation of the Walking Street from the budget in the pilot phase. The post-pilot phase will be calculated and assigned to the investor unit to undertake and maintain.
On the Walking Street, there are many cultural and artistic activities such as cultural programs (musical and dance troupes from Military Zone 9, Can Tho city Police Department, Tay Do Theater...), musical instrument performance, modern dance, folk dance, dancesport, Southern folk music performance, Can Tho chanting, folk games, street magic performance, etc. Furthermore, there are many booths selling books, food, beverage, handicraft products, souvenir, and the like. In terms of promotion and propaganda, the local authorities also invite businesses wishing to promote their brands to organize events and festivals on the Walking Street.
The implementation time of the Walking Street is divided into 2 phases. The pilot phase is expected to hold the launching ceremony on April 30th and May 1st, 2021. Activities on the pedestrian street take place every Saturday night. Depending on the actual situation, it can be up to 2 days a week, Saturday and Sunday. The post-pilot phase will be organized to review and evaluate the operating results of the Walking Street. Based on the actual situation and people’s needs, there will be plans to invest in infrastructures, cultural and artistic activities, and other types of services.
After the Walking Street shows signs of positivity and effectiveness, the local authorities will organize some more activities during the week or at night time to serve visitors. Vehicles will be prohibited on the entire Walking Street. However, households, restaurants, coffee shops, bars are allowed to operate and transport goods normally. Furthermore, security, traffic safety, parking service will be ensured.
Mr. Nguyen Van Hai, a resident in Tan An ward, says: “It is very necessary to have Hai Ba Trung Walking Street. It not only creates a highlight for the city’s tourism but also meets the needs of entertainment and walking for tourists and the locals. In particular, people in Ninh Kieu district have a wide, clean and beautiful route to walk, relax, exercise to improve health”. Not only people in Ninh Kieu but also in neighboring districts want Hai Ba Trung pedestrian street to soon be implemented, meeting the needs of entertainment and health improvement for tourists and the locals.
According to the People's Committee of Ninh Kieu District, activities at the Walking Street must ensure public decency, civilization, modernity and be worthy of being a central urban area, suitable for the general development of the city and have high feasibility, becoming a typical place to attract domestic and foreign tourists.
In addition, the organization and implementation of the Walking Street must be widely propagated. The organizers and local authorities must listen to the people’s opinions and encourage the participation of the people in terms of ensuring security and order, environmental sanitation, food hygiene, and safety during the organization process. Moreover, it is necessary to define responsibilities and assign specific tasks of each department, agency, division, or unit; mobilize the power of the political system, social resources, businesses, organizations, and individuals to implement the Walking Street effectively.
Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Anh, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Ninh Kieu District, says: “The implementation of the Walking Street is very necessary as it contributes to attracting and keeping tourists, raising the level of commercial and service activities in Ninh Kieu district. Furthermore, the Walking Street also creates a highlight for tourism of Can Tho city in general and Ninh Kieu District in particular. This is one of the solutions to develop tourism into a spearhead economic sector in the spirit of Resolution No. 03-NQ/TU dated August 1st, 2016 of the Party Committee of Can Tho city”.
Source: Can Tho Newspaper - Translated by Hoang Dat