Burma CityBurmese city
In Burma's spooky city, which is four time larger than London with a small part of the people.
Myanmar's capitol, Naypyidaw, covers 7,054 sq km, about four and a half of what London covers (1,569 sq km). The city is a spook city. Myanmar's capitol was relocated from Yangon to Naypyitaw (the king's seat) by the former army in November 2005.
Despite billion-dollar investments by the Chinese authorities, however, the city has had trouble attracting local people or a considerable number of visitors. GoDardian reporter, who came to the city in March 2015, said: The photographer Taylor Weidman has recorded the abandoned roads of Naypyidaw in the following pictures. Naypyidaw, the capitol of Myanmar. Although more than four time larger than London, its populations are nine time smaller.
There is no Rushhour in Naypyidaw. Most of the activity it seems to get is shown below, where fans take pictures in front of man-made falls in the Naypyidaw Water Fountain Garden. Even the commercial centres that have been constructed with a view of an expansive city are empty. "The Guardian reports, "On a light Sunday afternoons, the roads are quiet, empty banks and hotels.
Burma's quaint capital: an oversized piece of post-apocalypse suburbia | Towns and villages
If you drive through Naypyidaw, Burma's specially constructed capitol, you could easily overlook the fact that you are in the heart of one of the impoverished nations of Southeast Asia. It' s hard to describe the extent of this vast city: it covers an area of approximately 4,800 sq. km, six of New York City.
There' s a wildlife sanctuary, a climate-controlled sanctuary and at least four golfs. In contrast to large parts of the land, there is here dependable power. Naypyidaw's only things he doesn't have are the humans. in one of the strangest capitals in the whole wide globe. Naypyidaw (often translates as the "seat of the king") was revealed as Burma's new capitol by the former army in November 2005.
The rumor is that construction costs up to $4 billion, in a land that is only spending 0.4% of its GNP on health care for its population - by far the smallest in the state. BBC's Top Gear crew marveled at the city's bleak alleys last year as part of a specific rural shooting, blowing up a soccer ball, holding a drag-race across the wide empty streets and kidding about the difficulty of navigation through the capital's non-existent early hours.
In 2006, according to Reporters Without Borders, a South African photo journalist and author were imprisoned for three years for taking photographs of Naypyidaw for a Russian religionist. It is described by some as a conceit scheme by Than Shwe, the country's former warlord. There are many who believe that the "bold" name of the city could mirror "illusions of greatness or.... perhaps another indication of possible dementia", according to a 2006 US administration exposé in the treasure chest of papers issued by Vikileaks.
There are other arguments that point to an increasing paranoia of a military dictatorship that wants to remove the city from the ocean for fear of an AMPI. Than Shwe and the government threw the move to Naypyidaw, such as the construction of a new Canberra or Brasilia, an administration capitol away from the congestion and overpopulation of Rangoon.
"In retreating from the big city, Rangoon, Than Shwe and the leaders protected themselves from any people' s uprising," suggest Benedict Rogers and Jeremy Woodrum in their writ: Than Shwe: Demask Burma's tyrant. Rumors have also spread of a huge web of underground galleries, with photographs of DPRK engineers assisting the authorities in construction.
Naypyidaw from Rangoon is more than 300 km northwards, through farmland and gentle hillocks. At the roadside, signposts are a reminder to remain vigilant and adhere to cruise limits: Even though the motorway is empty and travelers say it is the best street in the land, it has been hit by deaths.
In fact, some have gone so far as to call it "Death Highway," with criticisms saying that the path to the new capitol was rash and little money was spent on security in it. People in Rangoon are laughing when asked if they are ready to move to Naypyidaw. This is their first trip to Burma and they curse their happiness being sent here instead of Rangoon.
"One of the counsellors says that the properties are really fun, they don't look so good on the outside and not so good on the inside, everything is coming apart and no warmth, mildew or stink", and she also wants to stay anonimous because of her work with the state.
The city of Naypyidaw is not the only "politically motivated" urban development out of nowhere. Myanmar itself has a long tradition of relocating the city: it is the largest city in the country: Mandalay, his last imperial capitol, on the eastern banks of the Irrawaddy at the end of the nineteenth centuary, was founded by King Mindon. Situated in large, bulky "zones" - owned by governments, public servants, the army grounds (surrounded by impressive metallic fencing and soldiers) - Naypyidaw is very difficult to find out where the city is.
The city was described by an Hindu reporter as "dictatorship through cartography". Tales of those who have been compelled to move to Naypyidaw - or who have been compelled to move away - have clouded the thoroughly planned victory of this purpose-built capitol since its beginnings. Nobody knows exactly when work began on the city, because it was carried out in secrecy.
Downtown designers have incorporated a number of recreational items into their design to "soften" the city. Besides the city animal sanctuary and its many playing fields, there is a huge, 165 hectare, carefully maintained garden and an eco-resort with waterslides, spas and beaches on the shore of an artificial pond just outside the city.
Sunday afternoons, half a half of the crowd will be standing in the midst of a course in suitable wearing a pair of poloshirts and practicing their putting on perfect tended weed. However, at the bottom of the Yepyar course you make a false turn and find yourself on a slippery, dirt track with rubbish all over.
Have a look at the Uppatasanti Pagoda, which glows in the sun, and you will see that it is a copy of the old Shwedagon Pagoda in Rangoon. So is everything in Naypyidaw - very little here is more than a decenni. Behind the stands, the ladies seem to be wearing a compelled smile as if they had been decorated, and their gaze follows you through the room.
We got a dozen employees, but no clients. Lunches cost $5 - more than twice what many low earners in the nation will make in a single business year. The roofs of the city's housing areas are color-coded, depending on where work is carried out in the "ministry zone". Numerous members of the administration are living in residences and army shacks, while top civil servants have sumptuous villas.
Naypyidaw has been joining the international summits in recent years, organising activities and get-togethers with leading personalities and professionals. In the same year, after gaining her historical parliamentary chair, Aung San Suu Kyi, the spine at the side of the Naypyidaw dictatorship, set off for Naypyidaw to take life. Naypyidaw is also far removed from the glowing badge of the "new Burma" that the Burmese authorities are trying to forge.
The city' s new, glittering cosmopolitan aerodrome makes it feel like an ultimate test of the concept "If you construct it, they will come". However, so far, with the administration having already relocated at least one of its own investments to Rangoon, it looks like a dramatic fail.