Yangon Heritage Trust (YHT), an NGO which works towards conserving historic buildings in Yangon, has announced the start of a survey to gauge the public’s opinion on city heritage.
The project, carried out with the support from New Zealand government and Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC), aims to understand how Yangon residents value their local environment, will allow downtown communities to express how they feel about the streets and urban environments they live in.
The Founder and Chairman of YHT, Dr Thant Myint-U, said that the Trust could only help provide options and bring technical advice and lessons learned from abroad.
“In the end it’s the people of Yangon who will need to decide how they would like to protect their heritage and see their city grow. This project is for us a hugely important initial step towards trying to engage local people and communities, and hear from them their thoughts, stories, and ideas for the future,” he said.
The survey initially started on Sin O Tan, Bosunpat and 42nd streets in Yangon. This community engagement project is expected to give the YHT to allow directly engaging local communities and establishing connections with local residents, encouraging local residents to think about what they value and what they do not value in their neighbourhoods and help local residents consider more closely the link between the way they live and the environment.
“It’s not only about taking pictures of buildings and streets. Desires of the people will be prioritised on what they want to exist in their environment. The decisions will be based on their wish,” said Daw May Thway, project manager at YHT.
YHT said this study will provide suggestions to address concerns raised by local residents and help the government take responsibility. However, addressing the concerns of local residents does not fall within the scope of this project, it added.