new cities in new valleys

I've talked about Ayala Land's vast land holdings in Canlubang before and how that will definitely figure into the future of our megacity. Apparently they've laid out the vision of the shape of that new development. (Ah, the tribulations of unrequited and long distance love - when you live and work away from the city you call home. News gets by without you.)

Jo, the ManilaRat, keyed me in on the developments in Nuvali in her latest post.

Heard about AyalaLand's new project in Canlubang, called Nuvali (from the Latin nuvo meaning "birth of a star"). Literally a "new valley" in the Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay area, it's a 1,600-hectare megatownship development set for full bloom over the next 40 to 50 years. Eyed as the next Makati, its main thrust is 21st century technology meets back-to-basics harmony with nature. Think eco-friendly, ultra-modern sustainable living: clean lines, fluid designs, integrated zones (residential, business, services), and green green green everywhere.
So I hied off to the Ayala Land site (and noticed how it seems to be so geared towards the OFW -or Pinoy Expats, as Dave Llorito prefers -market) and jumped off to Nuvali site. (Warning: bad UI flash-based website.)

I was eager to look for broad sketch masterplans but all the site had was spiffy marketing marterial. You can download pdf copies of an ad series about Nuvali that they ran in the Philippine Star. (Another warning: they make you pass through a copyright agreement. -duh!)

The content is worth it, if you can stand the marketing speak ("evoliving" -? really???) and the weird commitment to pseudo-italian placenames ("Abrio" -?!?). The sidebar on "design and planning initiatives" (see below) were significant.

I'll definitely cheer for de-emphasizing cars and multi-use (read: mixed-use) neighborhoods. Kudos also to a "future that veers away from the severe sprawl of conventional urban development."

To that end, Joel Luna, Chief Architect of the Ayala Land Innovation and Design Group, says they are building wider sidewalks:

"...to encourage more people to walk rather than take their car. This is also safer and more pedestrian friendly. We are also building narrower pavements...so there's more room for natural landscaping. There will be double-rows of trees instead of the typical single row."

So their are paying attention to pedestrian mobility and comfort -and the micro-climate.

Then there's this sidebar:

Can Ayala accomplish all this? Despite the marketing gloss, I have no doubt that they will. They are patient enough and forward looking enough (remember it took them 50 years to fully develop the Ayala CBD, and they waited close to decade for Metro Pacific to go belly up on Fort Bonifacio -and now it's in their control) and have the deep pockets to see this through.

The one aspect I will be looking closely at: whether they can escape their elitist past and be willing to mix incomes and avoid the segrated, gated, high-walled enclaves that I suspect add to the (spatial) roots of our discontent.

It'll probably take about 5-10 years to get the full expanse of the project - another 10 to fully build out the infra, but this will definitely be another mega-project that will shape the future of our megacity.

Image credit: swiped from ALI's website
doesn't this cover fair-use?

(p.s. -er, nuvali? can we change the name? to something a little more asian? spanish even?)

1 comment:

koikaze said...

Good Afternoon, Urbano

Sounds idyllic! Why should such an wonderful concept send shivers of apprehension up and down my spine?

Is not the purpose of the development to provide income for the developer in perpetuity? Will the real estate not be permanently withdrawn from the resources available to the humans among us?

The farm on which I was born, and the improvements wrought by my Grandfather, are no longer in my family. Ownership passed to other humans when my Grandfather died. They, in their turn, reaped the benefits of that particular resource.

Corporate developers do not die. The property they develop never returns to public ownership. Real estate developers (hotel chains, for example) have already locked up some of the most desirable property on our great green earth. If you want a vacation, you'll pay one of them for the privilege. There was a time, not long ago, when humans profited from tourism.

Is there not something wrong with the concept that inanimate monstrosities ... legal fictions, in fact ... should be allowed to dominate our existence ... and that of our progeny?


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