Friday, April 29, 2005

and over in Amman...

In the Jordan Times today there is an article by Ahmad Y. Majdoubeh (link only lasts a week)...about the rapid and huge expansion of Amman. It is a major concern for the residents of Amman as there is little infrastructure and there seems to be minimal planning for new residential and commercial projects...

"Purchases mean expansion. The story goes that Amman, like Rome, started on seven hills. Now, it is spread over more than 20. In fact, its borders have exceeded some of the neighbouring plains and towns...

...Should not expansion be done professionally and according to modern, meticulous specifications, standards and rules? We understand the messiness of east, southeast and northeast Amman. These areas were built when there was no modern planning, and continued to be built in the same vein. But what about the areas that lie to the west, southwest and northwest of Amman? Should they not be categorically different?..

...Look now at all “modern” parts of Amman. The streets are too narrow. More importantly, the streets have no “breathers”, proper sidewalks or protection. Anybody can build a shopping mall right at the edge of the street, a bakery shop, a mosque, a school, a hospital, etc. How many shopping malls (big or small) have adequate parking? In fact, most of the smaller shopping complexes do not have any parking space at all — which compels motorists to park in the street and cause traffic jams."

So far, I agree...however...there follows a sentence which I disagree with "There is a lot of talk about Jordan becoming Singapore, Ireland or Switzerland. I think this is good.". The beauty of Amman (and it is a beautiful city) is that it is totally different from these places, it has its own startling beauty and some of that lies within its mish-mash of streets and the little bit of chaos that Amman offers. By all means - develop the correct infrastructure, make sure there are pavements (from someone who used to walk to work...they are needed!), implement correct town planning...but do not try to become the Singapore of the Middle East...leave that to Dubai or Abu Dhabi.

The following pictures are not the best I have...but the ones I have to hand....I will try to find my favourite picture of Amman at sunset...

View over Amman at dusk
View over Amman at dusk

Amman in the snow
Amman after snowfall

Amman Inter-con in the snow
Amman Inter-con in the snow


Post a Comment

<< Home