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[Photos] Naypyidaw's Ghostly Central Train Station

Naypyidaw central train station, 11am. A heavy cloud hangs over the entire place. The moment you set foot in the city, it gives you the chills.

I wandered around with my camera taking shots of empty hallways, empty platforms and empty offices, and found there was actually something magical about the absence of people in this concrete complex. It feels like a place that has long been forgotten, and yet it was never alive in the first place.

The capital of Myanmar, a country of nearly 53 million people, is a ghost town. In 2005 the Tatmadaw – the ruling armed forces – decided to move the country’s capital from ancient and lively Yangon to this new administrative city where relatively few people live. The real reasons for the move are far beyond the announced urban development plan; they are mostly political. Those in power wished to move all sensitive military institutions away from the people of Yangon.

But it didn’t stop there. One of the main urban features of the new capital is a vast, ten-lane highway that cuts through the city. The road sees almost no traffic at all. Why build such a huge road for a city inhabited by less than a million people? Rumor has it, this highway actually serves as an emergency escape runway for Tatmadaw airplanes in case of political instability. And it is this influence, this power of the military, that brings such a creepy feeling to the city.

See some photos of the capital's eerie central train station below:

The station's police notice board. Myanmar's most wanted?

A train pulls a carriage through the station.

Deserted hallways.

A cluttered, yet empty office

No sitting allowed.

A rare passenger sighting.

Closed off, vacant spaces.

Empty seats in the waiting room.

The Yangon-Mandalay train.

Yet another desolate hallway.

Unoccupied offices.

Not a single person inside the main station.

An almost completely empty pick-up point outside the station.


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