The stunning and informative content of Architectural Guide: Yangon – once only available to people willing to pay €38 – is now available to anyone with a computer or a smartphone. The new website yangongui.de brings stories, perspectives, and images of 110 of Yangon’s most iconic buildings to the palm of your hand or the top of your lap.
The 400-page Architectural Guide: Yangon first came out in 2015 and has been lauded for its colorful presentation of the “troubled history, imposing architecture and economic prowess of a city in constant flux.”
Like the book’s chapters, the website is organized township, moving from Botataung in the south to Insein in the north before jumping back down to Thanlyin. Within each township page are blurbs and photos telling the stories of buildings representing various chapters of Yangon’s history, showing how precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial ideas of space and structure influence the city’s present and future.
The site also presents the book’s six thematic chapters, which offer in-depth explorations of questions about Yangon’s history, governance, and infrastructure. The sixth thematic chapter covers Naypyidaw.
A final section of the site contains introductions by the authors, Ben Bansal and Elliott Fox, and photographer Manuel Oka, as well as lists of the “five favorite buildings” of five Yangon residents whose work revolves around the city of Yangon.
The site is easily navigable and beautiful to look at. Like the book, it’s likely to inspire you to get out and explore parts of the city you haven’t seen before and develop opinions about what makes Yangon special, what needs to change, and what needs to be protected.