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No More Cases Like Bundang or Ilsan

Posted November. 03, 2003 22:56,   


“The New City, such as Bundang and Ilsan, was an absolute failure. From now on, we should approach this problem of the New City with a new philosophy and vision that suits the new era of an average national income of $20,000.”

The government attracted attention with the plan to provide three million housing units for people in the metropolitan area within 10 years as a part of a “countermeasure for real estate problems.”

However, many people think that the government needs to make a completely new plan because the established New Cities, which focused on housing provisions, is showing numerous problems such as an inability of functioning as a city.

A professor at the Information and Communications University (ICU), Lee Gak-bum, who was a chief policy planning secretary in Kim Young-sam’s government, said, “The project of the New City tended to be carried out as a countermeasure against rising housing price. The government should learn a lesson from the past failure and approach the problem of the New City with a new philosophy and vision.”

Lee worked out the “scheme for the cities of 21st century” based on the principle of “planning first, development later” as a policy of the Global Steering Committee against development destroying quasi-farmland in 1995, but it was annulled right before a plan was formed due to resistance from the construction industry.

He said, “At that time, the plan was to divide the land into two types, one to be available for development thorough planning and the other to be protected. Concerning the former, we planned to build advanced country-style cities, perfectly furnished with basic facilities.”

A deputy governor of affairs for Gyeonggi Han Hyun-gyu, who took part in the project of the New City in early 1990s, said, “I insisted on the development of 10 million pyong-scale land, including the northwest area of Yongin into Bundang, but it was not adopted due to the restraint of metropolitan area. If it had been adopted, there would have been no destructive development in the southern part of the metropolitan area.”

The head of “Institution for making comfortable Ilsan,” Baek Sung-wun, who was the governor of Gyeonggi-Goyang, recollected, “I said to Gyeonggi that if only Ilsan was developed, then the rest of Goyang area would fall behind and this development would be a reckless one.”

The government is planning to announce three to four more New City areas besides Pangyo (29,700 housing), Paju (47,000 housing), and Kimpo (70,000 housing).