Currently on show at the BACC, the Friends of Makkasan collaborative project proposes Bangkok’s most exciting green space development—and wants your vote. 

A few years ago we wrote that the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) was looking to redevelop Makkasan rail depot, a 600-rai plot of greenery situated in the heart of the city, in an attempt to recoup some of their huge debts. As the experts explained at the time, there are countless reasons why we should keep this patch of prime land green.

Currently showing at the BACC is an exhibition by a group of environmentalists, architects, historians and others who don’t want to see this natural oasis lost forever. The project is now called Friends of Makkasan and—similar to New York's Friends of the High Line—it aims to stimulate discussion about why this land is so important to the city and what it could potentially be used for. 

Central to the exhibition are the following renderings by Shma Designs and Arsom Silp Institute of the Arts, which demonstrate Makkasan's enormous development potential. The public are asked to vote on whether they'd prefer a shiny new concrete complex of hotels, malls, condos and office blocks or what could well be described as Bangkok’s version of New York's Central Park. The proposed development contains the following features:

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A botanical garden housing a variety of exotic plants and flowers, with a 185-meter tower for visitors to enjoy stunning views and which would also assist with generating wind energy.

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A green walking path aligned with the original railway.

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Green roof infrastructure for urban farming and a sky walk to circulate people between outdoors and indoors areas.

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A vast outdoor multi-purpose hall under a roof garden for exhibitions, music festivals, weekend markets and an international art museum.

The project is on show at the BACC through Mar 29. 

Open Tue-Sun 9:30am-9PM. 3/F, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, Rama 1 Rd., 02-214-6630. BTS National Stadium. www.facebook.com/MakkasanHope