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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Cheonggyecheon: Urban Renewal Showcase


I tried imagining a river at the very heart of an industrializing city and the image that sticks is a picture of a terribly filthy, thrash-filled waterway. And yes, littered with shanties of all types and sizes.

That I was told, was how Cheonggyecheon looked liked in the early fifties, when Korea was just beginning to run the course of industrialization. What used to be a fabled stream became so deteriorated, the Korean government decided to cover it with concrete and construct an elevated highway thereon.


That highway stayed there until 2003, when the City of Seoul reversed the national government's design and removed it. What for? In order to restore the 6 kilometer stream that once ran through it, thru a mechanized source (the water now is pumped up as the original stream source has dried up). The cost? A whopping USD 280 Million!

They said there was strong opposition to the project early on. But now, this place has become a favorite hang-out for Koreans, especially so during summertime.


How I wish we could do the same thing with Manila's waterways, but of course I know that's just but a dream.

19 comments:

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

It may not be as natural as it used to be but at least the Koreans 'revived' a meandering stream in the middle of a big city. Too bad Manila can't afford it.

Rico said...

I want that too! It would feel so good to rest our tired feet in the waters.
But then again I'm having second thoughts on the cleanliness of the water. One might get all sorts of skin diseases.

r-yo said...

Nomadic Pinoy: Doing things like these, is really just a fantasy for Manila. Way to go.

r-yo said...

Rico: I am not sure on the quality of the water. But since it sprouts out of fountains and is free-flowing, medyo aerated na rin sya.

Musicero said...

I just wish our cities would be like that. So modern yet natural at the same time.

Lawstude said...

why can't we have something like that panyero?

Unseen Rajasthan said...

What a fantastic capture !! I really loved the way you have captured the photos !! Lovely Blog...Also I Have Started My Own Website And Would Like You To Have A Look At It.I Would Love To Have Your Comments On That Also.Unseen Rajasthan

yenrules said...

Great photos r-yo! I'm fixing my blog again. God bless! =D

ian said...

God-willing, muling aawit ang Ilog Pasig and we'll have a similar urban renewal. Marikina somehow did it with the Marikina River. Gina Lopez and the ABS-CBN Foundation has just launched Kapit Bisig para sa Ilog Pasig and she predicts a discernible change in five years' time. let's see, let's keep our fingers crossed, and let's all throw less waste =]

libre mangarap basta tatambalan ng pagkilos. a defeatist attitude won't help. so ayun. all hands on deck. taralets =]

KORKI said...

whoa ganda ng post mo ako si korki

Everlito (ever) Villacruz said...

sarap tumambay dyan!

Gypsy said...

This is so so cool!! I wish some developer like Ayala would come up with something like this in one of their projects..sana yong sa Davao,hehe.

the donG said...

people there really enjoy their parks. maybe because weather is not that bad plus a really clean park to walk.

BlogusVox said...

I think, that's what they're trying to achive with pasig river. To date, they already relocated those people living along the banks. Maybe someday will have the same pasig river as discribed by Rizal. I wish...

Chyng said...

wow, i wanna visit korea too! (masyado ba expensive magtravel jan)

palma tayona said...

nawa'y huwag tayong umabot sa ganyan, kung saan para magkaroon muli ng daluyan ng tubig eh kinakailangan gumawa pa ng artipisyal na pamamaraan. marami tayong mga estero, maliliit na kanal at batis na buhay pa't dumadaloy sa metro manila. kinakailangan lamang linisin at ipagbawal nang total ang pagtapon ng basura. sana nawa...

ian said...

hey. post an update already! i wanna know what happened to your independence day gig hehe

all is well with you, i hope?

caryn said...

wow, thanks for sharing! i think projects like this really enhance the quality of life in urban settings ;-)

Unseen Rajasthan said...

Fantastic location !!Great shots...The sprinkle system is so amazing..Great..Unseen Rajasthan