Proposed to Quang Ngai authorities by Ly Son JSC last year, the 55-hecare Sea Eyes complex includes apartment blocks, square, shopping center, public beach and boat racing area. The project is estimated to cost over VND1.7 trillion ($73 million) and will become the Quang Ngai’s largest urban area.
The Sea Eyes project is expected to boost the socio-economic development of Ly Son island. However, the complex has faced many criticism and concerns from local people.
“This is our traditional location for boat races and fishing. Building an urban area there will affect our daily lives," a local named Dang Dinh Nguyen said, adding that the urban area will block sea view and encroach upon the seaweed conservation and restoration area, while badly affects the local fishermen.
Many others also raised concerns about impacts of the proposed project on the environment and other public, religious constructions on Ly Son.
Vice Chairman of Ly Son District People’s Committee Le Van Ninh recognized the concerns but said that the project would hugely benefit development of the island.
He said: “Ly Son Island attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists each year. But the sparse infrastructure for tourism hinders our growth. The Sea Eyes project can deal with this problem and I agree that developerr must ensure the locals' benefits.”
As the project’s developer, Ly Son JSC promised to not damage existing public constructions such as temples and will have solutions to keep the ocean view of those constructions.
Answering a question about the possible impact on the local environment, Head of Ly Son Marine Reserve Phung Dinh Toan said the majority of the urban area was located on just dead coral, sand, seaweed. However, in order to ensure transparency, an independent party should be invited to review the project.
"The Department of Construction should gather opinions from all agencies and Ly Son District People's Committee before submitting the final report to Quang Ngai People's Committee," Toan added.