The former Central Police Station, now fallen into sad neglect
Tonight was the presentation of 150 Years of Urban Architecture at the French Cultural Centre and I stupidly thought it might be in English. How wrong was I. It was in Khmer and French, so I had to make do with the photos and maps on the big screen to get the gist of the hour-plus slideshow and talk. That'll teach me for thinking the CCF might've at last got the message that English is the second language of choice these days. The folks from The Heritage Mission
, who took me on an architecture tour of the old French quarter a couple of weekends ago, were the presenters. Which reminds me, I still have many photos to post from that tour. So let's start now with a few views of the Central Police Station, which sits alongside the Post Office but these days, it's empty and surrounded by a green corrugated fence and large trees. I recall on my first few visits to Phnom Penh that the station was still functioning, or so it seemed. Today it appears to be waiting for the wrecking crew though it would be nice if the building itself could be saved and utilized. In fact how about making the whole Post Office area a pedestrian only zone and put some real effort into renovating the collection of old colonial buildings that line both sides of the street. It works in many other cities around the world, why can't it work here. Anyway, back to the police station. I'm told it was constructed in its colonial-art deco style in 1925 though an older building stood in its place beforehand. It has three levels and a terrace running alongside its roof. The current owner doesn't like visitors these days, so we had to view it from afar, well the top of the old Manolis Hotel across the street to be precise.
The door is open to the old station house but no one is at home A ground floor view of the old police station on Streets 13 and 98, next to the post office A side view of the old police station The Heritage Mission presentation warned against the loss of colonial architecture like this building that has since disappeared from Norodom Boulevard in the past year
Labels: The Heritage Mission