Shops, lights and grills! Architects’ proposed designs for a modern Manila underpass

November 13, 2019 - 11:47 PM
Manila underpass design proposal
A proposed design by the Manila Corinthian Chapter of the United Architects of the Philippines for the Manila underpass.

A chapter of the United Architects of the Philippines proposed designs for a modern underpass to Manila Mayor Isko Moreno aiming to capture the unique spirit, heritage and culture of the country’s capital.

UAP’s Manila Corinthian chapter shared its designs on Facebook that featured intricate grille works, glass-covered walkways and underground shops, among others.

The proposed underpass seeks to connect “the different key destinations in the heart of the city” and serve as a destination of its own.

According to UAP Manila Corinthian, the design “reflects the direction of the new leadership in the revitalization of the city that deserves a world-class facility for a humble but vital service of pedestrian passage.”

"Modern Underpass to Manila’s Heritage" A Proposed Manila Urban Link – Underpass #BagongMaynila…

Posted by UAP Manila Corinthian Chapter on Monday, November 11, 2019


The proposal also considered the needs of persons with disabilities and senior citizens through escalators and other modern features.

It was inspired by the designs of structures found in Makati,  London and Paris, specifically the world-famous Louvre Museum.

Posted by UAP Manila Corinthian Chapter on Monday, November 11, 2019


“Most of the leading cities worldwide are embracing internationalization and global standards, opening to new methods and technologies while maintaining to push their local identity,” the chapter said.

The proposed underpass features paintings on its walls and small shops where people can meet and hang out.

Posted by UAP Manila Corinthian Chapter on Monday, November 11, 2019


The project, according to the chapter’s Facebook page, will be a “collaboration for the city of Manila by Manila CPDO (City Planning and Development Office)” through different architects and groups involved in construction planning.

Filipinos expressed their excitement and support for the proposals while there were those who pointed out flooding-related concerns.

Manila, after all, is very much prone to flash floods especially during the wet season.

“Hopefully the utilities (drainage, etc.) would be also planned well. Kudos!” a Facebook user wrote.

The underpass idea looks nice… Pero you must do something about the flood din… Ilang bagyo din ang dumaan na naging impassable ‘yung nga ‘yun,” another user said. 

Moreno in his early days vowed to make Manila “great” again by reviving the capital’s historic areas such as Escolta Street, Intramuros and Chinatown to remind Filipinos of their history and heritage.

He vowed to make the city tourist-friendly by 2021, where people can visit museums and shopping and dining spots.

He also said that he will rebuild 47 plazas, parks and playgrounds.

Last July, an architecture graduate from the University of Santo Tomas proposed designs envisioning Manila Zoo as a prime tourist spot, a “center for education” and to be “the best environment for animals” in the urban community.