Got to pass by the Muelle Del Rio again en route to a meeting at the DPWH in the Port Area. We took this route as we wanted to avoid congestion in front of the Manila City Hall and along Padre Burgos. I made sure I took additional photos of the road including the approach from the Quezon Bridge to show the parked vehicles, mostly UV Express, parked along the road. Some maps already refer to the Muelle Del Rio as Riverside Drive. I think this is not appropriate especially from the perspective of heritage and the preservation of street names that are strongly linked with history. Such is an unnecessary simplification that should not be the case especially in the historic City of Manila and in the vicinity of Intramuros.
Taking a turn – turning from the approach towards the riverside portion of the Muelle del Rio, one can see the bridge for the LRT Line 1 and trees where homeless people usually take shelter. The driveway under the bridge is for a public transport terminal occupying the area under the bridge.
Behind the Post Office – the walls/fence of the post office is vandalized while there seems to be no one using the walkway along the Pasig River at the right of the photo. The yellow poles are light posts. There are no pavement markings along this stretch of the road.
Bureau of Immigration – the BI complex is behind the wall shown on the left of the photo. There is a wide buffer zone along the Pasig River that’s been developed into a riverside park by the City of Manila. The curious Y-shaped structures are lamp posts that provide ample illumination at night time.
Post-terminal – the open area/riverside park continues after the ferry terminal and across the Plaza Mexico. Faintly visible on the left of the photo is the Acapulco Galleon Trade Monument that commemorated the trade route between the Philippines and Mexico during the Spanish Period. Across from the other side of Plaza Mexico are the ruins of the old Aduana (Customs) building.
The dark side – the lamp posts seem to have been removed from their concrete bases. This was also shown in the preceding photo and I can just imagine how dark it is at night. The area has much potential as a park and the City of Manila should develop the place for it to attract people.
Reconstruction – the Intramuros Administration and the Department of Tourism are already implementing some projects here and there but more would have to be done for Intramuros and the Muelle del Rio to be revived and become a major attraction if only for its heritage value. I certainly would like to see it developed like Melaka in Malaysia.
The Intramuros area including the Muelle del Rio may be considered for cycling and pedestrian facilities to encourage people to walk and cycle in the area. The stretch certainly has potential for walking and NMT, and should not be allowed to deteriorate further. Off-street parking facilities should also be considered and carefully planned such that on-street parking may be restricted and space be made available for pedestrian facilities. I am sure there are many planners and architects who would be up to this challenge.