Monday, July 26, 2010

Meeting with Teddy Boen

July 1, 2010

After a long morning at Andalas University, we got a ride from Pak Febrin's driver to the Klinik Konstrusi. A lot of people here have drivers to drive them around the city. Unfortunately, we cannot afford such luxury and have been taking mostly angkots (see Transportation), which is not a bad option.

Teddy Boen is a structural engineer from Jakarta who consults at the Klinik Konstrusi. He was very involved in the rebuilding efforts in Banda Aceh after the 2004 tsunami. He was at the clinic so we had an earlier-than-expected meeting with him.
  • He expressed his views on tsunami evacuation and how he doesn't think we should concentrate our efforts on that.
  • He claims that properly built, two-story houses on the coast can survive a tsunami.
  • He is concerned that poor people are moving away from the coast because of the tsunami warnings and rich people are taking over this prime real estate.


  1. wouldn't rich people mean a greater probability of a properly built house, which means a greater probability of lives saved.

    so isn't this a good thing?

  2. It is good in the general new building practice sense, but we need to be sensitive to the fact that these families have lived there for many years. Government relocation programs are generally not too favorable for those being displaced.