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Hanoi's Lotus-Shaped Theater Project Nipped in the Bud

Officials sprayed weed killer over the planned Hanoi Lotus Theater.

Tuoi Tre reported this week that officials told private developers to stop construction on the controversial plan. The structure was to float atop a 19-hectare lake in the country's capital and contain a 2,000-seat theater, ice-skating rink, offices, incubation hub and cultural center. The modern, six-story structure would also have means for mitigating storm water.

The now-scrapped project's official rendering. Photo via Zing.

Construction, led by an Australian architectural firm, began at the beginning of 2017 and it was scheduled to open in October 2019. The under-way building occupies a major public space in V1 Park in Cau Giay District.

Public criticism, however, finally convinced officials of the project's foolishness. Lotus-fatigue compelled many to question the need for yet another lotus-themed structure, especially one whose modern features clash with the traditions embodied by the iconic plant. Others expressed skepticism for the purpose of the building and the likelihood its theatre could be regularly filled.

The site of the theater. Photo via Zing.

Nguyen Manh Quyen, director of the municipal Department of Planning and Investment summarized the decision: "After consideration, the developer realized that there are already many theaters around that area so it would be unreasonable to add one to the list.” 

[Top photo via Planbee

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