• City of Manila

    Revival Pains: The Case of the Paco Market and Estero de Paco Rehabilitation

    In 2010, the government and partner agencies and organizations launched a massive drive to rehabilitate Estero de Paco as part of the greater and still-continuing campaign to rehabilitate Pasig River and its tributaries. As part of this drive, Paco Market, one of Paco’s iconic structures which is located alongside the Estero de Paco, was “redeveloped” as well as a showcase of the new Estero de Paco and, in a way, a new Paco as well. More or less a decade has passed since the Estero de Paco project was initiated and by and large, it seems most of the major rehabilitation work has been completed. It’s an opportunity to look…

  • City of Manila

    Plaza Dilao: The Memory of Paco’s Japanese Community

    Note: This is a long overdue entry that was originally planned for last year. I managed to have it published today though the plaza has been affected by the ongoing works of  the Skyway project that it looks different now. We can only hope this plaza will manage to survive and its legacy intact Plaza Dilao in Manila’s Paco district these days finds itself in an interesting spot. As an open space of sorts, it finds itself being sadly squeezed in between the major traffic chokepoints of Quirino Avenue and the old Quirino Avenue Extension. So apart from the few trees, the sights you mostly get to see are vehicles,…

  • City of Manila,  Mandaluyong

    The Two Houses of Jose P. Laurel

    Jose P. Laurel has a somewhat mixed legacy for having served as President of the Japanese-sponsored Second Republic from 1943 to 1945. Whatever achievements his administration had were overshadowed by the specter of Japanese control over the country, especially with their “support” for an independent but pro-Japan Philippines, and the horrors of World War II at large, especially towards the end when fighting between the Japanese and the US-led forces brought about much death and destruction to the country. Despite this, he is regarded as a good president who had nothing but the Filipino interests at heart and did what he could in the situation prevailing that time in the face of…

  • City of Manila

    Paco Park: from mournings to weddings

    These days, you may find it weird that a park can be situated in an unlikely neighborhood of sorts, surrounded by buildings and commercial establishments, right in the middle of intersecting roads which make it look like a rotunda plaza. Despite how “unfriendly” the site of Paco Park is today, it holds so much historical and cultural value that it has deserved the needed attention and preservation, all the more so now as urbanization and the decay it has brought is a serious threat not only to the park’s landscape but throughout the city as well.

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