Tuesday, May 10, 2011

SM City and Wal-Mart are not too different.

When I first landed in the Philippines in June of 2010, I really didn't know what to expect. I knew Manila and every town was crowded and traffic is a nightmare but what I didn't expect is the amount of malls especially the SM city malls. I have knew of the malls that a lot of people frequent because of the shopping and the air conditioning since not a lot of people have air conditioning in their homes. However lately, I heard more of these malls are starting to pop up. On the way to Baguio, I see a lot of them. North EDSA (which is the biggest on the Philippines), Pampanga, Tarlac, and Rosales. Some of these happen even in the remote of places in the provinces.

SM City Mall in Rosales
Right now there are 48 of these supermalls in the Philippines including 4 in China. One blogger popped up a question if the SM malls are good for the towns when it comes to jobs, or does it damage the charm of the town or the city? This pretty much is the same question when it comes to Wal-Mart in the states. We have a lot of Wal-Mart's and some of them are converting them into Supercenters, but they are mostly in the suburbs. There is one Wal-Mart in the Chicago limits and the company wants to build more but is causing controversy because Chicago has a lot of small businesses that it thrives on. Same with Baguio. There are lot of shops along Session Road and just noticed that more people flocked to the mall. Is this good? Well I have nothing against wrong against SM City and Wal-Mart when it comes to it. Both companies are a money making machine they have to do what to do. I heard and read that they are going to build another SM Megamall in Cebu. Cebu has one and Cebu is not like Manilla in any ways but they are planning a bigger mall that it will be become the 4th largest mall in the Philippines over the SM Mall Of Asia. Cebu? Really? So another question comes up, will it kill the charm that Cebu has or will it bring more jobs the city and the people need? That is a ongoing debate but it will be interested to see where it goes from here.