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The fate of a large green space in the middle of one of the world’s most built-up cities is pitting communities and conservationists against developers and cash-strapped authorities — a type of battle that is increasingly common in Asia.

The Makkasan area in central Bangkok, measuring about 80 hectares — roughly 80 rugby fields — houses a train station, a workshop, warehouses and some homes in a green expanse that stands in contrast to the sleek high-rise buildings all around.

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