white is the new pink?
(to catch all that yellow)

We-make-money-not-art recently featured the pee-tree:

"So Joa Herrenknecht has designed the Pee-tree urinal for public spaces. His bright ceramic white colour is a strong signal that can be seen from far – making it accessible when in urgent need. The trunk offers a perfect place for messaging, e.g. "I was here" or "done that" statements. The urine is directly flushed down to the underground sewage canal.

You think we can convince BF to replace his pink urinals with these?

Original and more examples from the pee-pee project.

heritage, home improvement
and rent control

Image credit: Bahay na Bato in San Nicolas from Tom Cockrem's Travel Image Library.
"In many cases rent control appears to be the most efficient technique presently known to destroy a city—except for bombing."
Assar Lindbeck

If there is a third rail in Philippine politics, it is rent control. The law has been extended countless times (the latest incarnation is RA 9341 which extends RA 9161) and though each time the law is passed or extended and sunset date is set, it is nevertheless predictable that it will be extended or renewed next time the law is set to lapse.

Arroyo, who has a Ph.D. in economics, must KNOW about the damaging effects of rent control and so I DO NOT UNDERSTAND why she approved the current extension. Or why anyone who took some basic economics in college (i.e. -our lawmakers and policy wonks) would approve of it. -Apart from it being POLITICALLY UNTOUCHABLE.

I am by no means neo-liberal in my economics but the left and right sides of the spectrum of economic thinking (from the chicago school/washington consensus to socialists and the welfare state architects of northern europe) agree on the destructive effects of rent control. It distorts not only the market but damages the built environment itself:
"...rent control diverts new investment, which would otherwise have gone to rental housing, toward other, greener pastures—greener in terms of consumer need. They have demonstrated that it leads to housing deterioration, to fewer repairs and less maintenance. For example, Paul Niebanck reports that 29 percent of rent-controlled housing in the United States is deteriorated, but only 8 percent of the uncontrolled units are in such a state of disrepair. Joel Brenner and Herbert Franklin cite similar statistics for England and France." (Walter Block, 1990)
Assar Lindbeck, whom I quote above, is a socialist. Paul Krugman has this to say:
"The analysis of rent control is among the best-understood issues in all of economics, and -- among economists, anyway -- one of the least controversial. In 1992 a poll of the American Economic Association found 93 percent of its members agreeing that "a ceiling on rents reduces the quality and quantity of housing." Almost every freshman-level textbook contains a case study on rent control, using its known adverse side effects to illustrate the principles of supply and demand."
And yet it continues to be untouchable -even by our columnists and pundits. (It could be that my google-foo is weak, but I can't find a single comment by Winnie Monsod on the matter, Raul Pangalangan condemns it but only in passing while criticizing tuition controls. Not even the ultra-conservative Bernie Villegas has critiqued it.)

It's not for a lack of local studies, either. A 2002 study by Marife Ballesteros for the Philippine Institute for Developmental Studies showed that:
"net benefits from rent control are positive and targets mainly the poor families. However, benefits have negligible effects on income. They also tend to be eroded by the regressive effects of rent control on supply of rental housing, in particular, the strict eviction provisions of the law. Stiff competition for low-priced rental housing, low quality of housing for the poor, higher rents for the uncontrolled sector, and misallocation of resources are the possible effects of rent control on housing."
Now why should this be important to the Heritage Conservation Society? Because the only real way to preserve our built environment is to make sure it is in the economic interest of the owners to invest in their properties. The Society may save a building or two by their current media strategy but they will do an even greater service to Metro Manila's heritage by making sure it is financially rewarding for landowners to reinvest in old buildings. Otherwise, the lack of actual income from rent causes disinvestment and decay. Landowners who can source new capital will more likely tear down their old buildings, while those who do not have the resources will not even be able to re-finance enough so that they can invest in the upkeep of their old buildings.

Want to know why Metro Manila is in a state of disrepair? Five decades of rent control. Want to know why we have squatter colonies? Rent control. Want to know why we're losing beautiful old homes? Rent control. Want to know why we have a small middle class? Rent control.

Now what about the poor? Won't lifting rent control make it more difficult for the majority of our population to find housing? We've had rent control for over 5 decades. As Dr. Phil likes to ask, "How's that working for you?"

Multiple Choice Quiz: We add over 100,000 people to the population of Metro Manila each year. And because we build so few new apartments, where do you think most of our new internal migrants wind up living?
  • a) In dilapidated housing
  • b) In crumbling apartment blocks
  • c) In old, over crowded boarding rooms
  • d) In squatter colonies
  • e) All of the above


measure for measure
rethinking our streets (2)

"The common thread in the new approach to traffic engineering is a recognition that the way you build a road affects far more than the movement of vehicles. It determines how drivers behave on it, whether pedestrians feel safe to walk alongside it, what kinds of businesses and housing spring up along it." WIRED 12.12

If there is one piece of unsolicited advice that I would like BF and the other Metro Manila mayors to hear, it is this:

If you want to improve quality of life in the city,
change the qualitative measure you use
for measuring road performance

It has become dogma among traffic engineers to measure road design by Level of Service (LOS). LOS has many factorials in the mix but essentially, on highways, LOS is measured at cars per second per mile highway. So the more cars pass at faster speeds, the higher the level of service. On city roads, the LOS is measured along intersections and is calculated as seconds delay per vehicle. So the longer a car is delayed at an intersection, the lower the LOS of that intersection.

Makes sense, if your main interest is keeping the traffic flowing. You can see that logic in play with the MMDA's u-turn slots. The intention of the closing the intersections is to make the road a clear way -thereby reducing seconds of delay, thereby improving the LOS.

So what's missing from the picture? Again, it goes back to thinking of streets only as roadways. It does not account for:

  1. volume of people moved

  2. road safety

  3. effect on commerce along the street

Why are these important?

Move people not vehicles

Counting vehicles instead of people means the bus that carries 50-75 people is equal in count to one person driving a car. Try comparing how much road space a bus with 75 people takes up, vs. 75 cars each with a driver. If you want to increase road efficiency, then you go to the more important factor of counting how many people you can actually get from one place to another.

Faster roads are less safe and less efficient

Increasing vehicle speeds increases the likelihood of accidents. It also makes the road more dangerous for pedestrians and bikers. Plus, it requires you to separate pedestrian traffic by raising the crosswalk.

It is not speed per se that bothers drivers, it is the unpredictability of traffic flow. Slower speeds but smoother flowing traffic is actually preferable to high speed, variable delays roadways.

Road capacity also suffers at higher speeds -faster traffic takes up more space per car than slower trafic. (Read more about the impact of road diets.)

One approach is to look at average vehicle speed and the standard deviation from the speed - then working on reducing the standard deviation, not increasing the speed. Reducing the deviation means smoothing out the traffic.

Commerce dies next to fast streets

Because fast streets feel less safe for pedestrians, commerce at street level dies. It is no accident (no pun intended) that retail flourishes on the slowest intersection of Quezon Avenue. The rest of the avenue (which was designed as a boulevard and has fabulously wide sidewalks) is devoted to seedy nightlife KTV bars that are dead in the daytime.

I know QC is in excellent fiscal health, but imagine how much more they could earn in sales taxes if Quezon Ave. was an active retail destination?

So, to reiterate: If the mayors to improve the city, they must change the qualitative measure they use for measuring road performance.

There are other, newer ways to measure LOS. The Victoria Transport Institute (Canada) publishes several studies on transportation costs and traffic management. There's an excellent one on traffic access and mobility (pdf).

The MM mayors and BF recently visited Vancouver to study the city's best practices on waste management. I can only hope they had the time to study Vancouver's traffic management plan and see how good street design will serve both vehicles and pedestrians and improve the quality of life in our cities.

(I'll be continuing my series on rethinking our streets -but next up: why the Heritage Conservation Society should be fighting rent control.)


streets not roads:
rethinking our streets (1)

We remember cities mostly by their streets. A high street or a major commerce corridor imparts to us our lasting impressions of a city. So there is Las Ramblas in Barcelona, Picadilly Circus in London, Times Square in New York, Tsim Sha Tsui in Hongkong.

Streets are the largest publicly owned spaces in any city and also take up the majority of land use. Typically 30-35% of a city's land area is devoted to streets.

Streets are the lifeblood of any city and convey commerce and people from home to office to factory. Streets are also the infrastructure web that defines a city -that connects districts and functions and serves as wayfinding. More than buildings or monuments, streets carry what Kevin Lynch calls the image of the city.

Streets, like cities, also persist. Unless interrupted by war or catastrophe or bad urban planning, a city will retain the fabric of its streets through the centuries. Rome has kept its fabric -so has Jericho and Jerusalem -so has Istanbul and Cairo.

Streets that serve cities well serve many functions -and conveying car traffic is just one of them. Streets move people -on foot, on bikes, in cars, in buses. Streets provide public storage for private goods (parking). Streets are exchanges -where people can meet, sell goods, explore the city. Streets are environmental channels - generating pollution or moving rain and stormwater - or providing trees. Streets are free public event spaces for fairs, concerts of mass demonstrations.

Which is why it concerns me that the MMDA, as part of its home city improvement bent, is undertaking a road improvement program. (Starting with Commonwealth Ave. in Quezon City.) -I'm not sure whether it's 7 or 9 (older reports say 9) but here's the gist of what they want to do:

"MMDA's "Seven Major Roads" program, an integrated infrastructure development program focusing government resources in the improvement of seven major transport corridors, namely ; Commonwealth Ave., R10, C5, EDSA, Quezon Ave., and Marcos Highway.

Improvement of these seven major roads includes road widening, geometric improvements, sidewalk rehabilitation and various street furniture."

I'm not complaining about the effort -i'm complaining about the bias for roads vs. streets.

Roads are for cars. Streets are for people (including people in cars).

The logic of Metro Manila's streets has, for far too long, been dominated by auto-chauvinism. Motorized transport -particularly cars, are seen as the primary use of streets. Sidewalks have been sacrificed to the roadway (road widening) and then pedestrians are derided for spilling onto the road. Pedestrians are forced to accomodate cars - by corraling the sidewalk with fences and using overhead crosswalks instead of at-grade crossings.

This is not surprising seeing that the opinion leaders are probably all car owners/users. Also because our public transport system is built on motorized transport (and driven by weird logic of the boundary system).

If we are to recover our metropolis, if we are to make it livable, we must begin by reclaiming the lost functions of our street.

(more on this to follow)

the light at the end of the gridlock

Jay Walljasper, editor-at-large of Utne Magazine, in a recent article for the Michigan Land Use Institute, muses about the possibility of a world with fewer vehicles. What he says about the history of traffic in other cities gives me hope for our own woes about traffic and gridlock:

It’s helpful to remember that before there was Prague, with its fiercely reckless drivers, or Bangkok and Jakarta, with their horrendous traffic jams, the picture of a transportation nightmare in most people’s minds was Rome, Madrid, or London. In each of these places, autos represented something deeper than just a way to get around.

In Rome of the 1960s, car culture was a mark of Italy’s arrival as a prosperous nation; in Madrid of the 1970s, a badge of the modern consumer society that replaced Franco’s dictatorship; and in London of the 1980s, the supreme symbol of free-market freedom as defined by Margaret Thatcher.

But look at them now. London shocked the world in 2003 with the huge success of its congestion pricing policy, which charges drivers a hefty fee to enter a traffic-unsnarled city center.

Madrid tamed its famously unruly traffic with aggressive implementation of pedestrian streets and other measures to keep cars from ruining neighborhoods.

And Rome, the butt of so many jokes about impossible traffic and insane drivers, reduced traffic by 25 percent in its center — an initiative that has become the model for Paris, a city usually looked to as the urban ideal.

Which is a fitting intro for the succeeding series of posts where I want to begin a dialogue on how we can rethink our streets and in so doing rebuild our cities.

(BTW, don't forget to vote!)


people's choice

Folks, its time to vote for the best urban places in Metro Manila.
Remember the qualifiers:

  • must be a publicly accessible place (i.e. - you don't have to pay to get in, or buy anything to get in)

  • preferably outdoor, or largely outdoor

  • democratic (not just for the burgis)

  • must contribute to making life in our metropolis just a little bit better

This link takes you to the survey.

Taking Sydney's cue, I've divided up the nominees into four categories: 1) Streets, Neighborhoods and Districts, 2) Parks and Plazas, 3) Malls and Markets (with a sub-category of temporary markets), and 4) Buildings and Campuses.

I've reproduced the list below, but please use the survey to register your votes. We're using the very scientific "audience applause" methodology so you can vote for as many places in each category as you please. (Polls close on January 31, 2006)


  • Adriatico Street (Malate)

  • Binondo

  • CCP Complex

  • Escolta

  • Evangelista Street (Quiapo)

  • Intramuros

  • Makati CBD (Salcedo and Legaspi Villages)

  • Malacanang

  • Malate

  • Ongpin Street.

  • Quiapo

  • Roxas Blvd.


  • Cartimar Market

  • Cubao X

  • Divisoria

  • Farmers Market (Cubao)

  • Gateway Mall (Cubao)

  • Glorietta

  • Greenbelt

  • Metrowalk (Pasig)

  • Tiendesitas


  • Greenhills Weekend Market

  • Magallanes Weekend Market

  • Salcedo and Legaspi Weekend Markets


  • American Cemetery

  • Arroceros Park

  • Baywalk

  • CCP Lawn

  • Chinese Cemetery

  • Crescent Circle (Fort Bonifacio)

  • Greenbelt Park

  • Intramuros Walls

  • Liwasang Bonifacio

  • Makati Parks and Gardens

  • Manila Zoo

  • Paco Park

  • Plaza Miranda

  • pocket park on Emerald Ave. (Ortigas)

  • Quezon Memorial Circle

  • Rizal Park

  • San Lorenzo Ruiz (Binondo)

  • Santa Cruz (Quiapo)

  • UP Lagoon

  • UP Sunken Garden


  • Ayala Museum

  • CCP and the CCP Complex

  • FEU Campus

  • Las Pinas Church

  • Manila Cathedral

  • San Augustin Church

  • San Sebastian Church

  • UP Diliman Campus

Thanks to all the nice people who took the time to nominate their favorite places in the city.


The Filipino, according to Google (updated)

Google Blogoscoped's Google Predjudice Map inspired me to do a similar search.

So what does the net (via Google) say about us? (468 links)

And what does it say about Manila? (133 links)

I should make a tag-cloud out of this...

UPDATE: I tried a search of "Filipinos are notorious for" and came up with this. Notice something though, most of the google links that come up are Filipino sites. What does that say about our self-image.


A Global Look at Urban Planning

Image: Scott Dalton for The New York Times
Richard Burdett pedaling through Bogotá, Colombia, yesterday. He is visiting 18 cities that will be the subject of the architecture exhibition of the Venice Biennale this fall.
Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Yesterday's New York Times featured an article on Richard Burdett's upcoming exhibit on cities at the Venice Bienalle. Burdett is adviser to Ken Livingston (mayor of London). From the article:
"Is it possible to make new civic centers, new housing, which make people's lives hell?" he asked, speaking by telephone.

"The answer is yes," he answered. "Flip that around and ask, if that's the case, can you design squares, streets, buildings that can provide the possibility of a more integrated society?"

Mr. Burdett's topic, which five years ago might have been a gently heated discussion among colleagues, is now a global flashpoint. Cities are terrorist targets - New York, London, Madrid. Cities are the staging grounds for riots, Paris most recently. And cities everywhere are magnets for immigration, welcome or not. According to population projections, 75 percent of all people will live in a few dozen cities by 2030...

Mr. Burdett said that his exhibition and its conclusions will be political as well as architectural and the work of a planner.

"I don't think you can talk about issues that matter, in the design of cities, without talking about which political system delivers the better quality of life," he said. "Does democracy work? There are many models of civic intervention."

And in his travels to date, which system seems to be the winner?

"On the 6th of September, I will tell you," he said."

I'd like to have seen Metro Manila on Burdett's list but then we share the plight of Joburg, Caracas, Sao Paolo and the other megacities.

A description from the Vienna Bienalle site:
"The exhibition will tackle the key issues facing cities today: from migration and growth, to mobility and sustainable development. It will examine the role of architects and architecture in constructing democratic and sustainable urban environments, and their links to policymaking, governance and social cohesion. The exhibition will feature cities with a global reach, the majority with populations above five million people. It will paint a narrative of urban experiences from four continents across the globe, including Shanghai, Mumbai and Tokyo in Asia; Mexico City, São Paulo and New York in the Americas; Lagos and Johannesburg in Africa; Beirut and Istanbul in the Mediterranean arc; and European cities including London, Berlin and Moscow along with the urban regions of Catalonia, and Northern Italy (Milan, Turin, Genoa). In addition to this international panorama, the 2006 Venice Architecture Biennale will propose a manifesto for Cities of the 21st Century – focussing on the potential of cities to contribute to a more sustainable, democratic and equitable world."


"My street, myself"

Maryanne Moll, author of "Tepid Water" (2001), "Three Men In One Night" (2002), "Scorpio Over Siquijor" (2002), and "At Merienda" (2005) has started a blog. She lives in Bangkal, Makati -on Evangelista St. Her latest entry is wonderful description of street life in our metropolis.

"In Evangelista, there’s always a handful of jeepneys in line to take passengers to Libertad and Buendia, people are practically spilling over the sidewalk and into the streets, and an average of five empty taxicabs pass by every minute. Edsa is a two-minute walk away, along a road that glimmers with a 7-11, a 24-hour Mercury Drug, Video City, Yes Wash, Andok’s, Julie’s Bakeshop, Goldilocks, HBC, PNB, Reyes Haircutters, The Look Salon, Pizza Hut, Jollibee, McDonald’s, Chowking, and about ten different pawnshops and twenty cheap cafeterias, and four grills, plus a hundred eload stores and internet cafes and one bingo place with dingy yellow tables where people play alfresco. Add to that a Makati Police Station and a station of the Bureau of Fire Protection, and a hospital.

It’s a street that never sleeps. I sometimes go out at 2 am to buy myself some ice cream, a reward for having labored over a five thousand-word draft, and jeepney barkers still call out, “BuendiaLRTBuendiaLRTBuendiaLRT,” and people would get in, fully dressed and fully awake, bringing their plastic file folders and umbrellas, as if it were the most natural thing in the world to go to Buendia LRT at 2 am. But I am not one to judge. After all, I myself buy ice cream at 2 am.

I love my street. Here I can do my grocery shopping at 6 am with an unwashed face and not be judged. Here I can walk while wearing my last smelly pair of jeans before laundry day and not be physically thrown out of the ring of the civilized. I can also trip on a piece of garbage and fall down and not be helped, but, well, at least I won’t be laughed at. I enjoy the complete lack of judgment here. I even suspect that this total lack of judgment that my anonymity in Evangelista has caused is in turn causing me to be somewhat of a superwoman. Here I can exist on an eccentric diet of instant food, junk food, cereals, and lutong bahay and still stay standing after three days of non-stop writing-to-beat-a-deadline. Here I can also write a chapter a day in my apartment about Philippine politics in the late 70’s and still be able to carry on an intelligent conversation with one of my downstairs neighbors about the pros and cons of having laundromats do one’s laundry while we’re on our way to take out the trash."

this week in our cities...

  • Taguig planning a lake front financial district

  • A great idea -it'll open up Laguna lake as the other waterfront of the city - in counterpoint to soon to be expanded waterfront at the CCP. It will also hopefully draw attention to the environmental degradation of the lake..
    Connect it to the west to Fort Bonifacio then to Makati, north to Ortigas and Libis, and south to the redeveloped FTI.

  • Call centers changing the city; police now on 24 hour watch (You mean they never were???)

  • FX operators still wrangling on AUV express plan

  • Quezon City begins building a medical complex

  • Which will integrate quite well with the North Triangle Commercial Center. From the article:

    "The multimillion-peso project will be the first of its kind in Asia and is expected to be completed by 2010, Del Mundo said.

    “It will be something that we will all be proud of, something that will thrust us into the 21st century and beyond,” he told the Inquirer in an interview.

    Aside from the hospitals, which will be expanded and their facilities upgraded, the complex will also have a National Reference Laboratory for Degenerative Diseases, and centers for blood diseases, brain, cancer, and physical therapy and rehabilitation. A Medical Arts Building, large enough to accommodate the clinics of 1,280 doctors, will also be constructed, Del Mundo said.

  • BF continues his Metro Gwapo program, this time threatening to confiscate laundy hung on clotheslines

  • MMDA looking for new dumpsites.

  • FACTOID: Metro Manila produces 8,000 metric tons of trash EVERYDAY. That's more than 17 million pounds. Or the combined weight of over 1,500 asian elephants! It also means that every person who lives in Metro Manila produces more than 1 pound of trash everyday.


taking great photos of great places

Image: "Dancing through the streets in Buenos Aires' San Telmo neighborhood."
-from Project for Public Spaces' The Best Street Photography of 2005

Project for Public Spaces releases their Best Street Photography from 2005 along with 10 Tips for Taking Great Photos of Public Spaces.
"When it comes to photographing public places, it's obvious that people must be front and center in your shots. But there's a lot more to good street photography than getting a nice crowd in the frame. To really communicate something about a place, you need to illustrate its qualities as a site of human activity. These tips from our street-smart photographers will help you capture those perfect public space moments on film (or memory card)."

I thought my manila shutterbug friends would enjoy the tips (and maybe add some of their own):
  1. Look for people's patterns

  2. Always be alert

  3. Wait for the right moment

  4. Become a part of the place

  5. Legitimize yourself

  6. Be purposeful

  7. Naïveté can help

  8. Try a number of angles

  9. Your own photos are always better than someone else's

  10. Find a great place

And, may I add, if you know of great urban places in Metro Manila, don't forget to nominate them.


this week in our cities...

  • Belmonte wants to model QC after Singapore and he can do this as the city will soon retire P1B in (inherited) debt after posting P6.1B in tax collections.

  • from the MStandard article:

    Aside from salaries and wages, the bulk of the budget this year will go to infrastructure projects, including an underpass at the Quezon City Memorial Circle that will be similar to the Lacson in Quiapo, Manila.

    “For (the) underpass alone, we will spend about P80 million. Around P380 million will be spent in 87 road projects.”

    Egad! They want a pedestrian underpass in QC Circle? The cars win again vs. the pedestrians!


    "Ayala Corp. is now constructing the 70,000 sqm North Triangle Commercial Center at QC Business District Development Center located between the North Triangle and North Edsa. The rehabilitation of Araneta Center is also being fast tracked. Megaworld is also pouring in some $12.5 million in office development in Eastwood City Cyber Park. Araneta Center will also develop a P15 billion “scenic garden” mass transport-based residential project."

  • Atienza prepares to redevelop Quiapo.

  • Fernando tries to resolve the traffic control feud with metro mayors, but Lina tells BF to back down for now.

  • This whole traffic tickets/police power snafu points to the weakness of the MMDA, both as a political entity and as an enabling law. The metro needs a strong regional administrative/planning authority and NCR congress reps should make this #1 priority. (If they can get past the turf war that is.)

  • Congress promises to open NAIA-3 by March.

  • SBMA remains the biggest employer in Bataan

  • De Quiros asks why we keep naming our streets after public officials.

  • Another fire guts a section of the metro, leaving a a hundred families homeless in Cubao. This after an earlier fire displaced 3,000 in Tondo. All in all, 109 fires in December


awarding urbanity

Inspired by Carlos Celdran's last kvetch, and the Project for Public Spaces' Great Public Spaces, I am asking readers to nominate the 10 best urban places in Metro Manila.

The qualifications:

  • must be a publicly accessible place (i.e. - you don't have to pay to get in, or buy anything to get in)

  • preferably outdoor, or largely outdoor

  • democratic (not just for the burgis)

  • must contribute to making life in our metropolis just a little bit better

Post a comment or send me email if you have any nominees. I will, of course, expect you to explain your nominees. Pictures are also welcome.

I'll close the nominations by January 15 and then open the list up for voting.

Please email this post to others who may be interested in improving our city -and recognizing the places that make our metropolis a better place to live.

visions vs. vectors

Le Corbusier's Plan Voisin, Ville Contemporaine

Le Corbusier's 1925 vision for the future of Paris

"But their prophesies will be no more perfect than the previous ones, continuing to tell us more about their own time than about 2030, because cities rarely arise from vision."

-Denise Scott Brown

Denise Brown discusses urban visions for the future against the actual dynamic of cities in "Building a Future Without a Blueprint" an op-ed piece for the WaPo. (Registration is required -but you could try accessing via BugMeNot.)

Brown's piece is brief but she does point out that societal forces -technology, demographics - drive consumer choices that then drive the dynamics (vectors, if you will) that shape cities.
To think realistically about housing and communities in 2030, we must see them as dependent variables that will owe their structure not to architects' dreams, but to forces at work within the society, technology and the natural world at the time they are built.

I don't quite agree with Brown's read on the future of (American) cities, re: "Cities may see modest increases in upper-middle-class returnees, but the majority of working Americans and many of the elderly will choose single-family detached suburbia." (A view she doesn't take time to substantiate.) And apparently she doesn't either as in an paragraph earlier, she says, "I'd also like to see housing types that would suit the evolving needs of Americans. One model to look at might be the lilong of Shanghai."

What about Metro Manila? What urban dynamics are shaping our urban forms? Are there housing typologies that would improve our city? How do we develop -deploy these typologies?

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