Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Myopic Urban Planning, Improper Building and Overbuilding (Greed) Aggravated Ondoy Disaster in Marikina and Neighboring Areas

30 September 2009

Internally-renowned architect and urban planner Felino Palafox reminds us of a 1977 Metro Manila Plan they submitted to Malacañang in 1977 that, if followed, could have averted or eased to a great extent the tragedy that befell the eastern section of Metro Manila and Rizal, specifically, Marikina, Pasig, Cainta and Pateros.

The plan called for "controlled development" of the eastern portion of Metro Manila, the building of a spillway in Parañaque, and one that recommended that houses be built with third floors (12 meters) instead of just two floors (9 meters) or worse, one.

This is the 24 Oras report by Sherrie Ann Torres.

It is obvious that the best urban planning is one that is attended by common sense and guided by ethical considerations. Less greed should always be the order of the day, anytime, anywhere. 

"Nag-usap kami ... na sana magkaroon muna ng moratorium sa pag-grant ng mga permit para maglagay ng subdivision," according to Rizal Representative Jack Duavit.  I guess he's talking to people like himself, the HLURB, the city councils and other regulatory agencies of government.

"Bawasan na o i-limit na ang mga pamilyang lumilipat sa Marikina dahil ito, unang-una hindi naman ganun kalaki ang Marikina na kung mapupuno ng kabahayan ito eh hindi na siguro magiging fit for habita(tion)," says Marikina Representative Del De Guzman.

People have always associated progress and development with the building of more grandiose subdivisions and glittering malls but in areas where this is not advisable, as in the cases of Marikina, Pasig and Cainta, this is now a tragic lesson that is being learned the hard way. Heavy  revenues will be earned, corporate bottom lines will show huge profits but down the road, as what happened with a howler named Ondoy, many lives will be lost, communities shattered and a nation's confidence rocked to its very core.

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