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A Marikina Street with Several Old Houses

According to one of the old time residents of this street (an octogenarian), there were several pre-war houses here but during the Japanese military’s retreat, they burned all if not most of the houses in this stretch. This is J.P. Rizal St. in Marikina which still has several old houses standing. Just a note that  possibly this was not the original name of the street since there’s also a street called Old J.P. Rizal.

The photos above are just a few of the old/heritage houses standing on J.P. Rizal St. The last photo (above), I think looks like an American inspired house and since I find it difficult to say what predominant style the houses are in,  I’ll just call them eclectic.

As mentioned earlier,  this part of town was burned by the Japanese forces. And these last two houses  featured in this post, were both built in 1946 and replaced previous ones that were casualties of war.

One of the houses rebuilt in 1946 on the same site as the previous one that burned down during the war. There are some remains of the older house and that is the stone landing with hollow ceramic balusters.

One thing in common about this house and several other old houses in Marikina was that it was built by carpenters from Rizal province.  The designer of this house was the father of the current owner. One of the interesting design element is the canopy over the balcony or balcon which is almost a semi-circular and when viewed from directly underneath, it looks like a fan or abanico (I run out of batteries, hence I was not able to take extra photos.)

This house also replaced a previous one that was also a casualty of war. What makes this house interesting are the wooden floors on the 2nd floor which was said to be  imported and was  mentioned as coming from the United States.

The floors are said to be from pine wood and came from the American military camp (most likely just a few months after the war has ended) that was located in Parang, Marikina. Apparently either the Americans were dismantling their camp or were giving away excess supplies.

View from the ground floor

As can be seen, the wooden floors does look different as compared to the wooden floors of other old houses. These (above) are lighter in color and seems to have bigger wood grains or are less dense.

Even if these houses were built post-war, they still have a lot of things in common with the older built or pre-war houses. They were still built to adapt to our tropical climate, with both practicality and sensibility in mind.

A sense of aesthetics and proportions were still observed even if these houses were built in the postwar years.

As can be seen, the wooden floors does look different as compared tothe wooden floors of other old houses. These (above) are lighter in color and seems to have bigger wood grain or are less compact.

Even if these houses were built post-war, they still have a lot of things in common with the older built or pre-war houses. They were still built to adapt to our tropical climate, with both practicality and sensibility in mind.

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