While there has been a building boom that is transforming Saigon, there is also a large collection of stalled and abandoned construction projects. These projects range from stalling at the starting gate, to being almost finished and then abandoned for various reasons.
This is a look at some of the most prominent unfinished structures in Saigon. I’ll be continually editing this page, so if you find another one let me know, and hopefully I will be able to move some of these projects back into the under construction page.
Satra Tax Plaza
Location: Corner of Le Loi and Nguyen Hue, District 1, HCMC.
The Satra Tax Plaza is on the prominent corner of Le Loi and Nguyen Hue on the site of the former Saigon Tax Trade Centre. It’s not known if the mosaics from the previous building will be included. The new tower will include The Okura Prestige Saigon; a 5-star Japanese hotel. The hotel was scheduled to open in 2020, but work stopped in April, 2018 and the site was cleared of all construction material.
Saigon Jewelry Center (SJC) Tower
Location: Corner Le Loi and Nam , District 1
Work on the Saigon Jewelry Center (SJC) briefly began in December 2016 only to stop again shortly thereafter. Work recommenced in March, 2018 and was abandoned once again.
[Construction work in April, 2018.]
Here is a concept video of what the completed project may look like.
[Image via arup.com.]
Location: 7 Le Thi Hong Gam, District 1
The Eximbank Tower near Ben Thanh market was announced in 2012. The block of land was cleared, but it has since only served as a parking space.
Eximbank’s general meeting of shareholders approved the construction of new headquarters in 2022.
[Abanded Eximbank Tower lot, next to the Spirit Of Saigon site.]
Location: 12 Le Duan, District 1, HCMC.
Official Website: www.lavenue.vn
Lavenue Crown is a proposed mixed-use tower featuring a retail space at the podium level, a five-star hotel, and executive residential units.
The land is opposite the French consulate on the former site of the Hotel du Controle financier building. The original heritage building was falsely classified as being faux-colonial, thus it was given the go-ahead for demolition in 2010.
Me Linh Tower
[Image via Archetype Group.]
Location: 2-4-6 Hai Ba Trung, District 1, HCMC.
The Me Linh Tower site is on the former property of the Sabeco beverage company. This tower was initially proposed in 2008 as the Sabeco Tower, and it has changed in design since then. The warehouses were demolished and construction briefly began in 2015. Construction was so brief that looking at the site now you wouldn’t suspect that work ever began.
[Photo via Viet Nam Real Estate.]
Location: 117-121 Nguyen Hue, District 1
There is not much information about this one, which is amazing considering it’s on one of the prime streets of the city. The SkyscraperCity forum first mentions the project in August 2007, and after the land was cleared it became a bike park.
Viet Capital Center
[Photo via coteccons.vn.]
Location: 3A-3B Ton Duc Thang, Dist. 1,
This is behind the Nexus project on 3A Ton Duc Thang, where the 3A arts precinct used to be. It is listed as 3A-3B Ton Duc Thang, though the Nexus project is that address. It will most likely be Le Loi Street, which will be extended past the Opera House and will be where the road where the trees are in the render.
In June 2019 the crane was taken down and the site is currently abandoned.
City Planning Exhibition Center – HCMC
[Photo via deso-architecture.com.]
Location: Thu Thiem New Urban Area, District 2.
If there was one building that a city would want to make sure gets finished, it’s a building dedicated to city planning. Alas, the City Planning Exhibition Center in Thu Thiem remains unfinished on the river front. To be fair, even if it was finished it wouldn’t be receiving many visitors yet as there is nothing else there.
[City Planning Exhibition Center – 2017.]
Majestic Hotel Majestic Extension
Location: 4-6 Nguyen Hue, District 1, HCMC
The Hotel Majestic is one of the classic heritage hotels of old Saigon. The extension will be built next to it, sort of emulating its style on the ground level, before towering above it with two modern towers.
[Majestic Hotel by DWP.]
Work began on this project, but it was abandoned after the basement level was finished.
[Majestic Hotel extension site.]
The Senla Boutique Hotel
Location: 111 Hai Ba Trung / 64 Le Thanh Ton, District 1, HCMC
The Senla Boutique Hotel began construction in 2011 and it has remained incomplete since topping out. There was a change of ownership in 2017, so maybe 2018 will be the year it starts again.
Phan Dinh Phung Stadium
Location: Vo Van Tan/Nam Ky Khoi Nghia/Nguyen Dinh Chieu/Pasteur, District 3, HCMC.
The Phan Dinh Phung Stadium will replace the sports centre that occupied this prominent D3 location. The previous facilities were already showing its age, even before part of the roof collapsed in 2014. The land has now been cleared but no work has started yet.
Since the original announcement of the upgrade there was an update to the original design.
Huynh Thuc Khang and Ton That Dam
Address: Corner Huynh Thuc Khang and Ton That Dam, District 1, HCMC.
I haven’t found anything about this prime inner-city block, so I’m leaving it here in case someone knows something about it.
Location: 1Bis Nguyen Dinh Chieu, Da Kao, District 1, HCMC
Springlight City was announced in 2011, and the massive block of land it will be built on was razed in preparation. There are some cranes and construction material on site, but it has been dormant for years now.
It has been reported that the developer (Ben Thanh-Mecury) has an outstanding tax bill and there are irregularities in its compensation and resettlement of more than 200 households that occupied the site.
Dragon Riverside City
[Photo via dragonriversidecity.vn.]
Location: 628-630 Dai Lo Vo Van Kiet, District 5, HCMC.
After many delays the Dragon Riverside City finally began construction in 2017. It was originally announced in 2010 and it has since undergone different designs to the current one. A 53-story Dragon Tower was one proposal, which has now been scaled back. After completing the basement in 2019 the project has stalled.
[Construction site 07/08/19.]
Location: 87 Cong Quynh, District 1.
Status: Under construction.
This project originally began as the Golden Hill complex in 2008, and the land remained dormant for years until it was taken over by Alpha King. This is a two-tower residential complex with a shopping mall in the podium. After making progress on the basement the project was abandoned again.
Location: 289 Tran Hung Dao, District 1.
Status: Under construction.
Leasing Agent: savills.com.vn
Around the corner from Alpha City is Alpha Town (also by Alpha King). This 35-level Grade A office building is “inspired by the landscape of Vietnam and the elegant shape of the Ao Dai”.
Location: Ba Son Complex, District 1.
Status: Under construction.
The Centennial is the third project to be acquired by Alpha King. This 45-level residential tower was originally part of the Vinhomes Golden River project, and this golden tower will stand in contrast next to the five blue Vinhomes Golden River towers. The first 18 floors will be serviced apartments managed by Ascott The Residence, and the rest will be private residential apartments. The project stalled in 2019, and in March 2020 the crane was removed.
Abandoned projects on this page have since recommenced.
Spirit of Saigon – Now known as One Central HCM.
Sonatus – 15 Le Thanh Ton, District 1, HCMC.
Saigon Luxury – 11D Thi Sach, District 1, HCMC.
V Tower – 131 Dien Bien Phu, Binh Thanh, HCMC.
DB Tower – 141-143-145 Dien Bien Phu, Binh Thanh, HCMC.
The Nexus – 3A Ton Duc Thang, District 1, HCMC.
Sun Tower – 2 Ton Duc Thang, Ba Son, District 1, HCMC.
Saigon One – Now known as IFC One Saigon.
Perhaps the most infamous abandoned project is Wiki: Saigon One Tower; the Ghost Tower of Saigon. Work began on the site in 2007, and by 2012 it had topped out and half of the windows were added. Then the project was abandoned.
Since then, rumours circulated about its fate, and news stories emerge every year announcing that construction will recommence. In 2017 it was reported that the property was seized from the developers and will be auctioned off.
[Saigon One, still blighting the skyline in 2017.]
In 2022 the project was resurrected by Viva Land as IFC One Saigon.
Hi James. Very interesting article. I live here in hcmc and to read yr list of stalled projects was mindboggling. This is now Oct 2019 and I would guess most of those projects are still dormant. I am also an engineer and have observed very poor building standards. Very little construction maintains it’s integrity and finish beyond a few months. Where can I find the english-speaking construction fraternity in hcmc? Whenever I try communicating basic engineering concerns the response is incomprehension. I am guessing I am not the only (potential) overseas investor who is extremely cautious of the local market. Is this another bubble brewing?
James Clark says
Hi Ian, there have been a few projects that have come alive again, and some slipped back into the stalled list so I need to update it again! Good question about finding an English speaking construction fraternity. I should make a list of such resources. As for the bubble question, there seems to be a housing shortage in HCMC, but I worry about Danang and Nha Trang being over-reliant on one market (South Korea and China respectively). An instant downturn would disrupt things there.