City of Pearl


There is a new Filipino-Chinese development project underway in the Bay of Manila. I would say “ground breaking” begins soon, but it’s more like “water breaking.” The project is to claim 407 hectares of the Bay.

Part of the One Belt, One Road (OBOR) project between China and the Philippines.


Here is a quote from Nicholas Ho, deputy managing director of the architectural firm from Hong Kong responsible for the design:

“The city is designed to become a self-sustaining smart community where the city itself is run by artificial intelligence… We want it to be green, we want it to be self-sustaining, not dependent on anything or anyone else. We want the city itself to have hardware and software so integrated in a way that it can feed back to artificial intelligence to ensure that city operation is always at its optimal level.”

The city’s energy is to be obtained from wave power and solar panels.

Of course, if the city is to be truly self-sustaining, it will need to furnish its own agricultural and food products. Also, arguably its own population could provide the management and knowledge infrastructure, rather than on relying on artificial intelligence.

Manila has the best natural harbor in the world. Today, Manila is is a great city in so many ways, but it does have some large, “Third World”-style slums where life is desperate. Hopefully this kind of development project creates a new standard, a model, and elevates ordinary people; hopefully, it does not become just a casino playground for the uber rich.

It would be nice to see Manila reclaim its reputation as the “Pearl of the Orient.”

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