Tuesday, September 28, 2010

25% of the Children's Park Re-Opens

One quarter of the Children’s Park has officially re-opened. The portion of the park that re-opened is the Amusement Area, located in the southeast corner of the park. It’s a compact area with a number of rides and games for small children.

The company that re-constructed the park, Bodi Group, should get kudos for the job they’ve done. It’s a first rate job, well designed and with a number of activities. Some of the rides include a ferris wheel, a Merry-go-round, a pirates ship, and bumper cars. Entry to the park is free but you have to buy individual tickets for each ride. Each ride costs about T2000 to T2500. They kept the small lake which existed before (and even kept the fish!). They are still working on parts of it – it looks like they will add a restaurant and picnic area. I like the fact that you can just stroll around for free even if you don’t want to go on the rides. Free parking is another nice bonus.

Now of course the big question is, what happens to the rest of the park? A Shangri-La hotel is rising up in the northeast corner of the park but there are still vast areas that have yet to be developed. I hold out hope that the rest of the area will remain a park in a true sense of the word, that is, an open space of grass, trees, walkways and playing fields. Bottom line is that the new amusement park is a great place to take small kids but its of limited interest for people over the age of 13 or 14. Let's hope that UB city authorities will reclaim the land from whoever owns it, keep it as a park, and open it to the general public.

In the meantime, the following are some pictures of the newly opened amusement park.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

New Developments Planned

In a previous post I mentioned that I had visited the planning department at City Hall. While I was there I took pictures of their Master Planning Map. I took a closer look at the map and found some things on it that are worth noting.

The first thing is that the construction happening across the road from the Dunjin Garal apartments is not a going to be a park, as many people had thought. Its going to be more apartments! On the map the development is called “Olympiin Hoton”. So anyone who bought an apartment in Dunjiin Garal and thought that they would get a front view of the new National Park is instead going to be looking at more apartments. Construction of Olympiin Hoton has already started.

However, the good news is that on the other side of Olympiin Hoton there are plans to build a massive open parkland that will stretch all the way to the Tuul River. Let’s all hope that the plan to build this National Park will one day become a reality.

The big map also indicates the following projects:

*A north-south road from the US embassy all the way down to Narny Gudanj. Part of this has already been built but they would still need to construct the section from Orchlon School down to Peace Ave.

*A complete Big Ring Road, with a section going from the old tank location east to Olympic Street, then looping north to connect with the Big Ring Road.

*A redeveloped area around Gandan Monastery

*A redeveloped area north of the Big Ring Road, which practically looks like a whole new downtown area. If this is indeed a new commercial area it would take a lot of pressure off Peace Ave.

*A redeveloped area north of the 3/4 micro-discrict.

*A new parkland and recreation area on the north bank of the Tuul River, across from Zaisan Tolgoi.

Of these, only the Big Ring Road project is currently being developed.

The following two photos show the design plans for the city. Notice in the first pic that the lower right corner has a large patch of green, that is intended to be the future National Park.

The second picture shows the plans for the area around the Naadam Stadium. What is most interesting in the recreation area along the north bank of the Tuul River, opposite Zaisan.