09/14/15

The Story of Ayala Triangle: Rebirth and Redevelopment

With Ayala scrapping its plans for Ayala Triangle at the wake of the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997, development has stalled in the property for a long while. For a long while, the Ayala Triangle remained a dormant property, save for the activity going on in the existing structures as well as at the park.

At the same time, the park grew as a popular open space, especially among those who work in the Makati CBD area being one of the few open spaces available in the midst of the rapid development and the towering steel and concrete structures that have sprouted in the area, even though not much has been done in the park throughout those years.

More than a decade later since the crisis, Ayala was ready to look again into the redevelopment of Ayala Triangle once again through its property development firm Ayala Land. And it was appropriate enough that the redevelopment efforts would begin with the park. Continue reading

09/10/15

The Story of Ayala Triangle: Center of a Rising Business District

As the airport operations at Nielson Field have closed down by the 1950s, around the same time, plans were being made to convert the Zobel de Ayala-owned hacienda (where the airfield is located) into a modern business district, giving birth to the Makati Central Business District. As structures began to sprout left and right, the old airfield which became a triangular open space found itself in the middle of all this development.

However, it took a while for any development to be seen in the area. Apart from the Nielson Tower, the rest of the triangular space was pretty much a barren open space which sometimes was used as a football field. That football field evemtually became known as Ugarte Field, named after Sebastian Ugarte, a legendary figure in Philippine football. (and by the way, his family is related to the Zobel de Ayala, Aboitiz, and a number of Spanish mestizo families in the country)

But it would not be long for the Zobel de Ayala conglomerate to establish their presence in this piece of land, kicking off what would be a long association they would have with this triangular space. Continue reading

09/7/15

The Story of Ayala Triangle: Beginnings as Nielson Field

If open spaces are considered the soul of a city, then there is little doubt that Ayala Triangle serves as the soul of Makati, especially the central business district area. In a way, such distinction is fitting as it also happens to be an open space with a rich history of almost 80 years and counting, having undergone many transformations into what it is today, not to mention what is to become of it.

Today, the Urban Roamer presents to you this mini-series that details the past, the present, and the foreseen future of this triangular patch of land in the middle of Makati,

BIRTH OF AN AIRFIELD

an aerial photograph of Nielson Field (courtesy of Timawa.net)

The beginnings of Ayala Triangle is itself a milestone in not only in the history of what is now the Metropolitan Manila area but also in the history of Philippine aviation as a whole when in July 1937, Nielson Field was opened to become Manila’s first airport. At that time, it was already considered the biggest and best-equipped airport in Asia, having two runways which still exist today but as major thoroughfares now, Paseo de Roxas and a portion of Ayala Avenue. Continue reading

11/13/14

Christmas in the City 2014: the Christmas spectacle at Ayala Triangle

If you live in the urban landscape of Metropolitan Manila, especially if you frequent the Makati Central Business District area, you know that the Christmas season is in the air when you see the Ayala Triangle Park dressed up in those shining, dancing, multi-colored lights that have become a yearly Yuletide attraction.

The tradition lives on this year as the  Ayala Triangle Christmas lights and sound show formally opened last November 12 to delight spectators anew and remind everyone that Christmas is upon us once more and it is time to get excited/stressed yet again.

Continue reading

09/3/14

Saving The Old, Building The New Mandarin Oriental Hotel Manila

As was talked about in this piece some time ago, the beloved Mandarin Oriental Manila will be closing down its operations this year. The hotel’s closing was being done in phases for quite some time, but on September 9, after 38 years in operation, the hotel will finally shut down its operations for good, at least in its current location.

Come 2020, a new Mandarin Oriental hotel is expected to open its doors again, and it will be located right across its current location at Roxas Triangle, right at the northern tip of Ayala Triangle. Continue reading