Friday, September 15, 2006

It's a office complex, it's a mall, no it's... 

Seeing as the CNE was nice enough not to ban the images of the absolutely huge amount of construction going in Venezuela I guess now would be a good time to start showing some of them - after all showing any decent portion of them is sure to be time, and bandwidth intensive so I better get started.

See if you can figure out what this first project is before scrolling to the bottom:

Actually, it was pretty easy to guess what it is. Reflective glass, gleaming floors, a nice atrium... obviously it's a shopping mall. In fact it's a new shopping mall being built in Caracas to compete with the already jam packed malls like the Sambil, the San Ignacio, etc. Retail sales are up so much that these spiffy new malls are just popping up like...

Ok, ok, I'm busted. I'll admit it - it isn't really a shopping mall at all. What it is a new building for the Bolivarian University (the new university system created by Chavez to educate those historically excluded from higher education in Venezuela)in Los Valles del Tuy, a sattellite city of Caracas. When it is inaugurated later this month it will house thousands of students and also house various of the governments social programs called Missions.

Yes, it may be hard to believe, but this VERY nice building, which really could pass for a luxury shopping mall, is being built by the government to provide services to lower income Venezuelans. This illustrates a key point that can't be lost on anyone who sees first hand the public works projects being built by the Venezuelan government. Chavez's government doesn't build cheap junk like previous governments did. When it builds things it makes sure they are durable structures meant to provide first rate services in a dignified atmosphere. We saw it last year with the VERY nice public housing, we see it now with this and we will be seeing it more and more as I post on Venezuela's public works projects.


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