Urban Planning in a Rapidly Urbanizing Setting



Approval Date
Actual Completion Date
Proposal Focus
Core Focus
Secondary Cities
Country Type
Lesson Learned for Cities Alliance Members and Partners
Care should be taken to ensure better linkages to project work: There was a disconnect between the work undertaken in Danang and other key activities which benefit from it. First, this work should have been better linked to the Danang project preparation. The previous Team Leader did not adequately involve the Bank’s local staff Operations Officer in this work, nor the Project Management Unit from Danang City. This would have facilitated a better internalization of the recommendations specific to Danang. This is now being remedied during project implementation and was largely a function of the activity management and not the activities themselves. Better Coordination could have been undertaken: This work could have been more explicitly tied to the Bank support to the Ministry of Construction in the support provide on the Orientation Master Plan. The past year saw transitions in the Urban Unit in Vietnam. As a result, this activity and other related activities could have been better coordinated. In future, such activities will require more careful coordination. This is one justification to link this work on peri-urban planning to the on-going Aus Aid funded technical assistance in provincial planning in Quang Nam – to better coordinate and take advantage of natural synergies. The work is highly relevant and can have a real impact: The work is highly relevant to Vietnam. It will serve to inform the JICA and WB planning work that is to be undertaken in Danang through the Priority Infrastructure Project. In addition, it has served to inform the Orientation Master Plan and the proposed new planning law which is being debated in the National Assembly. It has also informed the preparation of the National Urban Upgrading Program, which is proposed to become national policy. Regarding the amended activity which allowed for the work to be done in Quang Nam Province there are two main lessons: Demand Driven: What made the technical assistance planning process very successful in Quang Nam was its demand driven nature. Unlike past experience in developing CDS in Vietnam, for example, the authorities in Quang Nam came directly to the Bank asking for this assistance. The result was an extremely dedicated commitment from the part of Quang Nam, and a request for continued assistance. Coordination: This work also incorporated a lesson from the previous CDS experience in Vietnam, but ensuring coordination of this work from the Ministry of Planning, who has responsibility for overseeing socio-economic planning, the Ministry of Construction, which oversees structural and spatial planning, and the local authorities. The result is to ensure that the final output, which utilizes new planning techniques, is still consistent with government requirements for these documents. This is to ensure that we don’t have a repeat of the previous experience where the documents produced are not recognized by the local officials.


This proposal aims to support the urban policy reform process in Vietnam by providing TA input on urban planning in a rapidly urbanizing setting based on a local example to both city and national levels. It reinforces efforts that have been funded by CA to influecnce urban planning procedures in Vietnam.
Stimulate planning reform throughout the country on the back of a successful pilot in Danang and to help Vietnamese planners address the challenges of rapid urbanization by: 1) comparing and contrasting the growth pattern of Danang over the past 20 years with other selected cities around the world;  2) providing recommendations for the economic and sustainable development of peri-urban areas in Danang;  3) proposing policy reforms that would foster a more integrated and strategic approach to urban planning in Vietnam.
1)  2 Visits of int. and national experts to Danang for briefings, field work to prepare and present a short report comparing Danang’s growth with international examples;  2) Follow-up visit to Danang to present report providing “Recommendations for the Strategic Planning of Peri-Urban Areas in Danang,”;  3) Presentation of the above and a draft Policy Note to the Ministry at a workshop organized in Hanoi under the auspices of the Vietnam Urban Forum.
Expected Impacts and Results
Influence integrated strategic planning for urban growth in Danang (processes and institutions). The draft Policy Note is to be used for updating the Government’s “Orientation for Urban Development to 2020” and for a related “Guidance Circular” for local governments, elaborating on a methodology for urban planning that integrates physical, economic, and social aspects with a particular focus on peri-urban development.