Five projects near Shwedagon are suspended

Five large construction projects have been suspended by government authorities due to concerns over proximity to Shwedagon, according to local media.

The Thu Kha Yadanar Co, Shwe Taung Hday Development, Dagon City 1 by Marga Landmark, Shwe Taung Development and Adventure Myanmar Tour and Incentives projects have all been put on hiatus while Yangon and Myanmar Investment Commission officials consider their effects on the nearby skyline and the city’s cultural heritage.

Public concern over the projects – some of which are only a few hundred metres from the famous pagoda – has grown, with some Yangon residents taking to social media to present their views on the issue.

Elected government officials have also waded into the discussion.

Yangon City Development Committee central executive committee member U Khin Hlaing called on projects to stop last week, claiming he was against cutting down trees at the sites.

Noted historian U Thant Myint-U said in a Facebook post that he had visited one project and was “shocked” by how close some of the planned 12-storey buildings were to Shwedagon.

“The city urgently needs billions of dollars in new investment for new housing and office and commercial space. But it’s critical that development is well planned and within an overall vision of how Yangon should grow and modernize. We have this one chance to make Yangon a truly liveable as well as modern city. We don’t need to make the same mistakes that so many Asian cities have made these past decades.”

He called it “a brave and commendable decision and a step forward for proper urban planning.”


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