Tripin 2019 - page 81

Greater Colombo has a
population of 5.6million people
with approximately 2.1million
coming into the centre every day
and 1million residing at night.
Thousands more are making the
permanent move from rural or
semi urban locales into Colombo,
in hopes of better opportunities
and starting a new chapter. The
Big Amba (mango) in a New York
City hopeful fashion. It’s a natural
progression yes, but what does it
mean for a city that has ambitions
to be something so much more
than it is ready for? While we have
a beautiful architectural inheritance,
there seems to be lack of thought
about how this city should look,
feel, move and respond to its
existing and incoming inhabitants.
Despite my continuous cultural
hunger, I must admit Colombo
is vibrant and full of ideas. The
trick is, you need to get into the
‘local scene’ – ask a local to show
you their Colombo. From a home
cooked meal to vintage jewelers,
Colpetty Market to a seaside bar
and the journeys and stories that
accompany you in between are
second to none.
This city is youthful, its grit often
sophisticated in parts. We have
amazing artisanal vendors, organic
farmers markets, speakeasy’s,
designer boutique stores,
homeware and interiors studios,
stylish café’s with true purpose and
cultural festivals abound. There are
many communities here who know
who they are, some want the glossy
and shiny new towers and others
believe in a culture of preservation
– this challenge is not unique to our
city but the context is.
Known to ancient traders as long
as 2,000 years ago it was made
the capital by the British in 1815.
Photo by Aravinda Diaz
Photo by Farhath Firows
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