Sustainable Yangon Relies on Waterfront and Railway

Yangon has a framework to become a sustainable city, with three key areas which need to be prioritised for development in order to develop the city’s sustainability, said Robert Marshall, director of planning and landscape of Canada-based urban planning firm B+H Architects.

Pedestrian routes through historic central business district (CBD) areas, water bus transport and railroad re-development is needed for more sustainable urbanism in Yangon, he said at the Yangon Sustainable Development seminar at Sule Shangrila last Monday.

B+H is an international design and consulting firm headquartered in Canada.

“Although Yangon, in its current form, is a green and liveable city in Asia, it needs to become a sustainable city.

“To attract more tourists, focus on pedestrian areas is needed and officials should upgrade streetscapes and parks and historic buildings,” he said.

If a platform for pedestrians is constructed, there will be at least a walking connection from Sule Pagoda to the ferry terminal, which will become a new tourist attraction in the downtown area, he added.

Additionally, reconnecting the riverfront and utilising the water area will make Yangon a more sustainable city in Asia, he said.

“Yangon should focus on the development potential of the waterfront and expanding the waterbus network.

“Moreover, stations can create windows on the river and a new low-cost and low-impact transit system,” he added.

Furthermore, new rapid transit technology could solve many transport and accessibility issues, so Yangon should re-develop circle-line railroads. The creative adoption of historic infrastructure will help re-establish lost connections among existing townships and neighbourhoods, he explained.

“Although Yangon has more colonial buildings than any other city in Asia, it has missed the opportunity of development due to a generation of bad development decisions.

“Now is the right time to create a liveable city in Asia. Yangon is rapidly developing, so the related government authorities should implement the right urban planning project to transform it into a green city,” Mr Marshall said.

 

Source: Myanmar Times

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