Thousands of urban interventions enliven our city streets. These include hundreds of street altars scattered throughout the city. Some are well-constructed structures like the one in the hem at 63 Pasteur Street, or the one at the bend in Huynh Thuc Khang just before it intersects Nam Ky Khoi Nghia.
The fine line between urban renewal and gentrification is a constant subject of debate, as our cities move forward into the 21st century. Here we look at two options — embrace the past by fitting the modern city alongside it, or erase it to make way. Words by Seamus Butler.
Additional reporting by Nick Ross. Photos by Kyle Phanroy and Nick Ross
Groups of women are moving slowly to thumping aerobics music, barely breaking sweat. An unsteady roller-blader skids past, the five-foot padded mess of flailing arms and wobbly knees narrowly missing the lake before tumbling safely onto the grass. It is a balmy evening in Thong Nhat Park and hundreds of Hanoians are here to enjoy the clear skies, rain-freshened air and people watching.