New cities and urban developments in Southeast Asia

Observations on what makes a great new city, and what Southeast Asia could be doing better.

This week’s article is an editorial on new cities in Southeast Asia. I’ve had elements of this post in draft all year, so I have pushed it out the door before the year ends. This article may get broken up into separate posts in the future as I still have a lot to write about on this subject. Feel free to leave comments so I can continue the list.

Latest Posts at Living In Asia

Building better new cities in Southeast Asia

New urban areas and city development projects are being built across Southeast Asia to accommodate a rapidly urbanising population. What makes a good new city, and how to fix bad urban design.

Updated Posts


Government signs on for railway land development deal

“The Laos-China Railway Co. is to develop areas surrounding railway stations in Vientiane Capital, Vientiane Province, Oudomxay, and Luang Prabang.”


Why the US bit back at China’s ‘Broken Tooth’

“Less than a decade ago, Wan Kuok Koi, alias “Broken Tooth”, was incarcerated in a purpose-built top-security detention facility in Macau on charges of involvement in an illegal organization. Today, he freely runs an apparently highly profitable business empire across Hong Kong, Cambodia, Malaysia, Palau and Myanmar, including the mysterious and controversial Shwe Kokko new city being built in a remote area on the Moei river bordering Thailand.”

Air Pollution

We’ve had some soupy skies in Saigon this week, and air pollution continues to be a problem around Southeast Asia. In Hanoi, residents were advised to avoid going outside due to air pollution.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but Thai authorities to clamp down on polluters as haze chokes Bangkok.

Meanwhile Cambodia bans rice straw, garbage burning to reduce air pollution.

The millions of motorbikes are just one of the factors of polluted skies in HCMC. The city will soon start checking motorbikes for emissions.

Other News

Hong Kong

Make Hong Kong Great Again? With some creative planning, it’s possible


No. 1 Tunnel of Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway successfully holed through

Jokowi invites Elon Musk to consider Indonesia as SpaceX launch site

Indonesia real estate: Covid-19, relaxed foreign ownership laws and MotoGP are drawing property investors to tourist islands Bali and Lombok over Jakarta


Laos – the ‘battery’ of Asia and a ticking environmental time bomb

Narcotics kingpin backs new river port in Laos' Golden Triangle


Malaysia to legalise migrant workers from 15 countries

“The Malaysian government has decided to implement the Undocumented Migrants Recalibration Plan to legalise illegal foreign workers from 15 countries, including Cambodia. These workers may continue to work in the construction, industry and agriculture sectors in Malaysia.”


Yangon permits work to resume at over 100 construction sites


NAIA rehab talks fail again as gov't dumps Megawide

“The original proponent status earlier granted to Megawide Construction Corporation gets revoked. Megawide slams parties with 'vested and corrupt interests.’”

Megawide had previously committed to rehabilitating the aging airport of Manila, including building an elevated railway to link 3 Naia terminals.

Pandemic gives rise to second home market


Singapore, Malaysia in talks over High-Speed Rail project as deadline approaches


Red Line to Rangsit to open next November

Thailand offers cheap residency visas for condo buyers

Southern villagers protesting in Bangkok against industrial zone


US to help Vietnam develop clean energy