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Isabella Meland n8279748 - Laura Muirhead n8089736 - Elizabeth Oliver n8302707

Isabella Meland

on 21 April 2013

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Transcript of DAB525 - BAGO

BAGO, BURMA BAGO, BURMA The first recorded population within Bago city was 23,630 people, in 1903. Expanding and adapting overtime, the cities population almost doubled by 2000, reaching 41,721 people. Expanding significantly over the next seven year period, the city reached a total population of 501, 4000 people in 2007 (Htut, Htut, 2012). Total male population is 72,777 and female population is 86,944. Urban Population is 60,557 and rural population is 81,164. Population Density is 362 persons per sq. km. Majority (99.6%) of the residents of Bago city speak llonggo, leaving 0.4% speaking other languages including Tagalog, Cebuano, Aklanon and llocano (PONO, 2013). The dominant religion of the city is Roman Catholic, where 82% of the population have strong beliefs in this religion; this is reflected and highlighted in all aspects of their cultural monuments and buildings (Stadtner, 1991). BAGO, BURMA The widest river in the province, the Pegu River, runs alongside bago city starting at the northeast slope of Mt. Kanla-on and running down to Guimaras Strait. Bago has moderate temperature all year round. In particular, the southern region has a tropical monsoon climate and the northern region has a hot savannah climate. Evergreen forests and undulating mountain ranges surround and thrive within the city (Htut, Htut, 2012). Bago produces a variety of major crops and produce including sugarcane, maize, groundnut, sesamum, sunflower, beans, cotton, rubber, Myanmar tobacco, tapioca, banana, dhani (Nipa palm) and toddy (PONO, 2013). Bago City is composed of 24 barangays, 16 of which are rural and 8 are urban. Bago City has a total land area of 38, 941 hectares; a large sum (3,651.7150) of this land area belongs to Mt. Kanla-on Natural Park (PONO, 2013). The cultural rich city has many defining factors making it a unique, advanced, and prosporous place to travel and live. URBAN MORPHOLOGY South East Asian cities are recognised for their organised chaos in the planning of the organic urban morphology (Gugler, 1996). Bago in the Fifteenth Century was exposed to a variety of people, cultures and technology, this encouraged dramatic change in the city layout and the current urban morphology. In particular Europeans with Christian Beliefs, Indians and Middle-eastern cultures descended upon Bago, willing to make change (Whitehand, 2001)( Aung-Thwin, 2011). Bago failed to conform to the cultural identifier of an organic city layout due to cultural invaders, in particular the European Christians between the 14th and 16th Centuries (Kan Hla, 1978). BAGO, BURMA The City of Bago is located on the Southern end of Burma, In the Bago Region of Maynmar. Formely known as Pegu, Bago is rich in intricate, colourful and spectacular cultural monuments. Bago also has a long history of Buddhist and English Settlement that results in the current urban morphology. Founded by Mon Princesses in 825AD, this initiated Buddhist Art and Architecture to Flourish in Bago (Kirk, 1978). Currently visited by tourists to explore several Buddhist monuments that lie throughout the city, Bago is constantly growing and evolving through its history. URBAN MORPHOLOGY LAND FUNCTION This Diagram explores the interconnection between residential, commercial, community and religious monuments. The lack of division between these land functions enhances a community spirit and allows residences to appreciate the presence of significant religious monuments from the comfort of their houses. The large pink monument located on the right hand side of the city is surrounded by residential and commercial developments, further reinforcing the blurring of boundaries between land functions. CITY STRUCTURE The model also explores the variation in the cities fabrication; the height of commercial and residential buildings varies dramatically, as there is little formality and regularity. The model also clearly shows the significant change in scale between residential buildings and religious monuments, further reinforcing their influence on the cities inhabitants. MOBILITY Bago has a well established rice and timber production outside of the new town, situated in the rural areas south (Gugler, 1996). As a result, Yangon-Mandalay Highway, represented by the bold yellow line runs through the centre of Bago linking it to cities situated in the North and South, providing routes to export goods. Also enhancing local imports and exports is the train line, indicated by the orange line that runs from the north to the south of Bago and Burma. The bold green line shows the main street of Bago, named Pagoda Drive; it acts as a pathway to the Iconic Stupa directing people through the City. The Faint yellow lines represent sub roads that link major roads together. The Blue line signifies Pegu River that divides the City in two. Overall access in and out of Bago is highly available in order to encourage the production of goods for exporting on a global scale (Aung-Thwin, 2011). CITY STRUCTURE As represented in the model of the city, the relationship between the built environment and the negative space is evident. Predominately residential buildings are located against streets, allowing interaction with the greater community. Given the size of such blocks this creates negative space behind the houses, creating an unintentional private communal backyard. The nolli map further reinforces the level of green space situated among the residential houses. When looking at the city on a greater scale, the large amounts of natural water source, those in the form of lakes and rivers creates a relief from the built environment, one that cannot be filled for residential purposes.
The nolli map clearly highlights the scale and ratio between religious monuments, royal palaces and residential, commercial structures. The size of these contrasting structures reinforces their importance in the city and the cultural belief associated with respect towards religious monuments. The map also indicates the location of the Old Town in proximity to the Pegu River; this highlights the initial settling path as cities were created close to rivers to increase trade and travel between neighbouring cities. RELIGIOUS BUILDINGS The Combination of Red and Gold signifies respect towards the Buddha while exploring qualities such as purity, sacredness, virtuous and loyalty. The scale and monumentally of such Pagodas stimulates the viewer and encourages concentration, reflection, dedication and reverence, all key qualities of Buddhist meditation (Clarke & Costall, 2007). Bago further enhances the overall experience of the Shwemawdaw Pagoda by creating an entrance road that amplifies the size and significance of the structure. The boundary between the civilian street and the Pagoda walkway is marked with a gate guarded by lion statues, these Buddhist custom fights off evil spirits and protects the pagoda from negative forces. Buddhist Pagodas and Buddha’s throughout Bago are a cultural identifier, the rich use of colour and detail explores a level of natural beauty and symbolises cultural significance (Adler, n.d.). LAND FUNCTION Bago’s urban morphology does not clearly define regions for land function as commonly designed in developed western cities. As a result the city is structured from the core religious monument, the Shwamawdaw Stupa, and grows beyond that point. As explored in the diagram below the lack of division between functions creates a greater sense of community and sense of identity (Whitehand, 2001). The structure of this City does not resonate with Western values of a distinct Central Business District and Suburbia however it explores an ancient understanding of layout and functionality (Kan Hla, 1978). Although Bago’s urban morphology is defined by the influences of the English and Christian traditions, the land use rather expresses a typical Southeast Asian idea of mixed use. RELIGIOUS BUILDINGS STREETS AND SQUARES Commonly squares in a city define a meeting point, an intersection, a gathering place or a relief from the built environment. Due to the increased population density around the New City, there has been a removal of all “relief” spaces in order to maximise residential dwellings (Aung-Thwin, M and M. 2013). The Example on the top is a traditional square that acts as an entrance to the Building to the Foreground, this square establishes importance for the building and allows for space to gather outside. The Example on the bottom is two spaces divided by an intersection, this example of an amorphous square is an irregular shape yet it acts as void that offers different options and paths throughout the city (Kan Hla, 1979). In both examples predominate paths are indicated in blue and secondary paths in purple. An uncommon attribute for South East Asian Cities is wide streets, which is distinctive of Bago. Wide streets allow residents and tourists to navigate through the city easily by viewing significant landmarks such as the reclining Buddha and the Shwemawdaw Pagoda (Stadtner, 1991). CONCLUSION Bago is recognised within Burma as a city that provides tourists and residents a religious and cultural experience. The vast variety of iconic religious monuments and royal palaces highlight the struggle of power and authority that Bago has survived since founded by the Mon Kingdom in 825 (Htut, Htut, 2012). Bago is a well developed trade city, producing a substantial amount of rice and timber, further enhancing the cities success (Gugler, 1996). Bago has developed immensely since its foundation and will continue to flourish with the influence of technological advancement yet staying faithful to religious and cultural traditions that define an individual’s life. The urban morphology of Bago does not conform to either South East Asian or English preconceived perceptions of perfection; rather it is its own adaptation, expressing a unique character and pure functionality. RELIGIOUS BUILDINGS RECURRENT BUILDING TYPOLOGY Although Bago rebels against traditional south East Asian urban planning conventions by sticking to a grid like formation instead of organic, Bago does explore traditional Architectural expressions of the region. Due to the increased population density in urban centres there is an increased gravitation towards multi level residential dwellings. The combination of street front commercial and residential apartments allows residents to be in close proximity to services (Aung-Thwin, 2011). This architectural expression does not express a cohesive street facade but rather stresses functionality. Due to the importance of religious monuments, all funding is provided to maintain and advance such buildings in preference of residential or commercial buildings (Aung-Thwin, M and M. 2013). URBAN MORPHOLOGY The combination of an organic and grid city also pays respect to the traditional Buddhist beliefs of the magical square, which prescribes the layout of significant monuments, such as the Stupa in the far North eastern Point of the City and encourages a grid formation replicating the perfect square. Preference is given to the far north eastern location as it is acknowledged the Buddha gained enlightenment facing this direction, therefore the Shwemawdaw Pagoda claims prominent location (Kan Hla, 1978). BIBLIOGRAPHY U Kan Hla. 1978. Traditional Town Planning in Burma. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 37 (2): 92-104. Accessed May 3, 2013, doi: 10.2307/989177
Aung-Thwin, Michael and Aung-Thwin, Maitrii, 2013. A History of Myanmar since Ancient Times: Traditions and Transformations. London: Reaktion Books. Accessed May 12 2013.
U Kan Hla. 1979. Ancient Cities in Burma. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 38 (2): 95-102. Accessed May 3, 2012, doi: 10.2307/989421
Stadtner, Donald M. 1991. A Fifteenth-Century Royal Monument in Burma and the Seven Stations in Buddhist Art. The Art Bulletin 73 (1): 39-52. Accessed May 9, 2013, http://www.jstor.org.ezp01.library.qut.edu.au/stable/3045777
Kirk, William. 1978. The Road From Mandalay: Towards a Geographical Philosophy. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers 3 (4): 381-394. Accessed May 12, 2013, http://www.jstor.org.ezp01.library.qut.edu.au/stable/622119
Whitehand, J.W.R. 2001. British Urban Morphology: The Conzenian Tradition. School of Geography and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham. Urban Morphology 5 (2): 103-109. Accessed May 17, 2013. http://www.urbanform.org/pdf/whitehand2001.pdf
Aung-Thwin, Michael. 2011. A tale of Two Kingdoms: Ava and Pegu in the Fifteenth Century. Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 42. Accessed May 5, 2013 (1): 1-16, doi: 10.1017/S0022463410000512
PONO (Province of Negros Occidental: City of Bago). 2013. The Birth of a City. Accessed May 23, 2013. http://www.bagocity.gov.ph/about-bago-city/history-of-bago-city/
Htut, Zaw and Htut, Steven. 2012. Bago: The Capital of Bago Region, The Myanmar, Accessed May 3 2013. http://www.myanmars.net/myanmar-travel/myanmar-yangon/bago.htm
Gugler, Josef. 1996. The Urban Transformation of the Developing World. 1st ed. Oxford University Press.
Sthapitanonda, Nithi and Mertens, Brian. 2006. Architecture of Thailand. A guide to Traditional and Contemporary Forms. New York: Thames and Hudson. Accessed April 1 2013
Pile, John. 2009. A History of Interior Design. 3rd ed. New Jersey: John Wiley and Sons. Accessed April 1 2013
Clarke, Tom and Costall, Alan. 2007. The Emotional Connotations of Colour. University of Portsmouth. Accessed April 1 2013. http://blackboard.qut.edu.au/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_tab_group_id=_2_1&url=%2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Flauncher%3Ftype%3DCourse%26id%3D_83260_1%26url%3D
Adler, L. n.d. Responding to Colour, Cooperative Extension Service: Fact Sheet 4. University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture. Accessed April 1 2013. http://blackboard.qut.edu.au/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_tab_group_id=_2_1&url=%2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Flauncher%3Ftype%3DCourse%26id%3D_83260_1%26url%3D LAND FUNCTION As seen in this diagram, the orange indicates residential and rural properties that help Bago’s trade economy grow. This diagram also clearly identifies the division between the old and new town, the old represented in green and new town represented in blue. It can be also be interpreted that the movement of the city centre is towards the river, further accommodating for external trade. Although there is a division in land function over the whole of Bago, within the city centre is where diversity is seen. URBAN MORPHOLOGY The Christian Invasion brought with it settlement of the English, through this collaboration Bago’s urban morphology was defined through a combination of English and Asian urban planning practices. The Organic expression of an Asian city is retained through the placement of main roads, however the grid like effect of the sub streets expresses a westernised interpretation of urban planning (Aung-Thwin, M and M. 2013). Originally in the 9th century, Bago’s city was located to the far east of the Pegu River, refered to presently as the old town. However as the city grew and the demand and success of the cities trade of rice and timber expanded, a graduall shift towards the pegu river is noted (Kirk, 1978). This shift allowed a greater connection with neighbouring cities and increased transporation in and out of Bago. The new city was established during the 14th and 16th centuries due to the english settlement resulting in a christian perspective of town planning. HISTORY Due to the change in cultural power between the mon kingdom and a variety of other kingdoms, the religious monuments that plan out the city act as a guide to the ruling of a certain period of time (Aung-Thwin, M and M. 2013). The diagrams below explore the cities expansion from the date of establishment by the mon kingdom, through to current Bago, ruled by mayor ramon d. Torres as part of a local city council. The first city map uses blue dots to represent the locations of significant religious monuments and royal buildings located within Bago. HISTORY The Second diagram is dated at 825AD, when the Mon Kingdom established Bago, the first buildings created by the founders was the Shwemawdaw Pagoda and the Swethalyaung Buddha (Htut, Htut, 2012). These two monuments are located to the East and West of the Pegu River, this establishes the division of the city. The third diagram dates 1000, showing gradual development and spread around the religious monuments created by the Mon Kingdom. The Fourth Diagram dates to 1287, when the Mongol Kingdom ruled Bago, further encouraging an expansion of the city (Kan Hla, 1979). In diagram five, dating 1581, highlights the reconstruction of the Kanbawzathadi Palace, under rule of the Bamar Kingdom, further encouraging new infrastructure and city expansion for trade. HISTORY The final diagram dated at 2013, highlights the current Bago, residents inhabit the entire city, although the city centre remains to the East side of the Pegu River, rural properties and farming have increasingly expanded due to the success of global trade (Gugler, 1996). Through the progression of the diagrams it is evident that over time the city has expanded from the religious monuments. These locations of cultural significance act as a guiding role for individuals and the community, reinforcing their importance in the urban topography. Regardless of the many defeats and physical destruction of infrastrucutre, Bago residences seek stability through cultural and religious buildings. HISTORY Religious monuments throughout Bago conform to traditional Buddhist architectural conventions. As previously discussed, residential dwellings refrain from expressing a refined and finished detailed facade, rather an elaborate collaboration of advertising and mandatory services (Sthapitanonda & Mertens, 2006). However religious monuments such as the Shwemawdaw Pagoda and the Swethalyaung Buddha explore the opposite in architectural expression. The heavy use of the colours red and gold signifies the importance and status of the buildings, while also paying respect to a cultural tradition by using symbolic colours of good luck (Pile, 2009). Ceremonial architecture is the only buildings throughout Bago that are constructed out of stone, brick and stucco. This creates a clear contrast between residential and Ceremonial Architecture, further enhanced by the heavily embroidered and ornamented facades.
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