Sunday, November 19, 2006

But damn it looks nice 

The Valencia subway may be being built at a snails pace but comparing it to the drab concrete transit systems in certain cities (Caracas and Washington D.C. for example)it is so nice it is worth the wait. Here is a closeup look on its inside from its first day in operation:

Yes, that is what it looks like. It is Valencia's bullfighting ring that is near one of the stations.

I had to laugh when I saw this picture. It does a good job of conveying how lazy people can be. Maybe Chavez should start "Mission Ejercicio" by ripping all the escalators out of the subway systems.

An empty and unused ticket booth as the Metro is free for now.

In conclusion this is one atractive system. It may be a little slow in coming but at least they are doing quality work.

And speaking of quality work, long time readers will not I have pointed out on numerous occasions how what Chavez builds is of significantly higher quality than what was built by previous governments. For example, the subways built by Chavez have elevator access so people in wheelchairs can use them. Those built by the previous governmets didn't so people with disabilities were out of luck.

Another example is public housing. The opposition has always liked to brag that when they were in office they built a lot more housing than Chavez has. That may be true but as I have shown from the inside the housing that Chavez builds is of very high quality.

And the housing built by the previous governments? For the most part it is nowhere to be found. I have been told by a number of people that it litterally fell apart in a few years and has sometimes even washed away. Supposedly the walls would be made of very cheap and brittle cinderblock with plastic roofs. But this is second hand, I've never seen that housing.

What I have seen though, and now have pictures of, is this housing that was built by the Venezuelan government in Barquisimeto many years ago:

Notice anything funny? Yeah, that is it, they are empty shells without even the walls having been added. These structures were so poorly built that half way through construction they realized that the towers wouldn't be able to support the weight of walls much less people and their posessions. So they were never finished and stand there as a monument to the incompetance of the governments before Chavez. I wonder if the previous governments counted these bogus apartments in their housing numbers? Probably. Anyways when you picture pre-Chavez Venezuelan government housing now you have an image to remember.

BTW, I did exagerate slightly. The buildings are not a complete waste. One of my wife's relatives is a firefighter in Barquisimeto and they use these structures to practice repelling down buildings. So they come in handy for training would be rescuers.


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