BAGUIO CITY – The local government is setting its sights on the city’s 1.8-hectare property in barangay Irisan as the site for the put-up of tenement housing for the city’s socialized housing project and the establishment of an evacuation center to cater to the needs of calamity victims who will be displaced during the natural and man-made calamities.
Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong ordered the City Planning and Development Office, in coordination with concerned offices, to fastrack the plans for the area to accommodate the proposed tenement housing project and the put up of the city’s evacuation center to complement its evacuation center within the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (CDRRM) building located within the City Engineering Office compound in Lower Rock Quarry barangay.
The local chief executive claimed he was able to access some P50 million from the National Housing Authority (NHA) for the city’s socialized housing project thus concerned offices must fastrack the completion of the requirements to cause the release of the funds for the implementation of the tenement housing project for the housing needs of the marginalized sectors in the city.
Earlier, the previous administrations of the local government identified the city-owned property as a site for the housing project of government employees but the same did not materialize through the years.
Magalong asserted tenement housing is the most practical way of providing decent housing to the marginalized sectors as the city does not have sufficient land area for single-detached houses for the beneficiaries of socialized housing project.
According to him, the local government’s socialized housing project and the planned evacuation center will have to be built side-by-side to maximise the space and fastrack the implementation of the said projects at the same time that the city is working on the implementation of other priority development projects beneficial to the greater majority of the populace.
The city mayor explained that once the proposed evacuation center is established in the city-owned property, the local government will forego the evacuation center within the CDRRM building and convert the same to other worthy uses, especially related to disaster risk reduction and management, among other purposes in the future.
He emphasized the need for informal settlers and other marginalized sectors to have decent housing to prevent them from squatting on private properties and public lands that have been identified to be used for public needs, among others, that often complicate the proliferation of informal settlers in the different barangays.
He stated the urgency of having to access the funds committed to him by NHA officials, thus, the need for concerned offices to closely coordinate with each other for the completion of the requirements that will warrant the release of the funds for the immediate implementation of the city’s socialized housing project pursuant to its established local shelter plan compliant with the prevailing standards of housing prescribed by the housing-related national government offices.
By Dexter A. See
Photo by: Armando Bolislis