Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Manado rythm

Looking at a piece of Manado bay from my room up here, at a rather new hotel as one of the outcomes of reclamation at Manado beach, I am amazed. This city had no plan. The additional sixty hectares of land was appended to the then shoreline with no single government's master plan. The initiatives, money and all came from private businessmen, I was told by city officials – proud they sounded. The government was just given sixteen percent of the new land – for a green belt supposedly, which by the way, has yet to be seen.

Ask me not about aesthetics, though. This parade of new malls and office buildings is so eye-torturing. They could have used some coordination to at least make the whole package interesting. Not even close. Bunaken half an hour away out there is way more beautiful. Or, is it just for now? I am amazed and puzzled. No-planning used to sound good to my ears. But if that leads to chaotic structures like this, what is the use? So there I was interviewing people on the street.

And my faith in market was reinstalled: they're just so happy with their new Manado. They don’t give a damn if the look is a no-no. Yes, wealth comes before beauty.

Update: Here is the nice one. Raf, I'll come back (next time, no books, no survey)


  1. i personally think that the lack of good coffee and decent-temperature quiet places have somehow made Manado unbearable.

    but Bunaken... gosh...

  2. next 10 years, they're going to park their yatchs surrounding it (the mall). making that small city wierd among others.

    drive to south to the mountains and the lake to the heart of Minahasa, you'll find the real original places.