Hanoi is one of the few capitals in the world that will be 1000 years old by 2010. Its transformation over hundreds of years may not comparable to the changes over the last century, and especially last few decades. From colonial time to socialist era, and now the transitional period; its street pattern, public space, and living space have been transforming considerably.
These changes reflect the changes in economy and governance, institutions and execution, changes in the attitudes towards amenities and externalities; and above all, the values of Hanoians (changing as well) towards its living space, and public space.
The examples of Hanoi sidewalks, green spaces, and old residential quarters may represent the three most prominent changes of Hanoi over last few decades. Analysing these changes may reveal further insights on how society transformed economically, socially, and institutionally during the transitional period.
May these add some sketches to assist the future governance for the old, but energetic city and country of Vietnam.