Why there’s a call to preserve iconic Ricoa building along EDSA

March 2, 2023 - 3:49 PM
Ricoa Factory
Image capture of Ricoa Chocolate Factory along EDSA Mandaluyong as of April 2022 from Google Street View (Screengrab by Interaksyon from Google Street View)

An architectural historian raised calls to preserve historic buildings such as the iconic pink structure along EDSA Mandaluyong serving as a local chocolate factory.

Paulo Alcazaren, also an urban planner and landscape architect, on February 14 shared a photo of Ricoa Chocolate Factory‘s building on his Facebook account with the following caption:

“Ricoa factory on EDSA… the last mid-20th century industrial building standing. It should be conserved as heritage but probably will be a victim of wrecking balls soon. Where has all the love for heritage gone?”

20th-century architecture styles include modernism, Art Deco, rationalism, Bauhaus style, brutalism, and deconstructivism.

Rationalism was considered the main architectural style during that period. It focused on constructing large housing blocks of simple, symmetrical geometric shapes in which concrete was the material of choice.

Meanwhile, Ricoa was built in 1956 in the same spot it stands now, although not much information about its architectural background is available online.

It has seen ten Philippines presidents in its history and has witnessed defining moments in the country such as the People Power Revolution.

In an interview with Spot.ph, Alcazaren clarified that he “never said” any news about the building’s alleged impending demolition.

This was in response to viral posts claiming that the Ricoa building would be “probably” demolished following the architect’s caption.

Such pages like “Old Mandaluyong” and “Lahat 1990s” have been spreading the claims, with their posts reaching over 10,000 and 4,600 likes and reactions, respectively.

The Ricoa building in Mandaluyong is known for its eye-catching salmon pink hue with darker accents on the top, making its light blue-and-yellow logo all the more prominent against the softer background color.

It is the first company to manufacture chocolate products in the country.

Ricoa is behind the famous local chocolates Flat Tops and Curly Tops.

It also offers Ricoa Cocoa Powder, Sweetened Cocoa Powder, and Ricoa Chocolate Syrup, which are ingredients in making breakfast favorite “champorado.”