Over 500 Manila squatters to get environment-friendly homes
Dennis Carcamo (The Philippine Star) - February 17, 2014 - 4:29pm

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Interior and Local Government on Monday announced that a total of 577 informal settler families (ISF) in Sampaloc, Manila will benefit from the first environment-friendly housing project in an in-city relocation site.

Under the government's  "Lumikas para Iwas Kalamidad at Sakit or Oplan Likas" program, DILG Secretary Mar Roxas said the Estero de San Miguel micro-medium rise building, the construction of the housing units, particularly on Legarda Street in Sampaloc, Manila, is now being fast-tracked for the immediate relocation of 105 ISFs.

"Oplan Likas" aims to relocate ISFs living along so-called danger zones in various parts of Metro Manila.

The program is being spearheaded by the DILG, the Department of Social Welfare and Development in partnership with the Department of Public Works and Highways and Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Roxas said the affordable settlement for ISFs is unique because it was developed in an in-city relocation site and designed both for energy and water conservation purposes.

The housing project was constructed through the People’s Plan, a program which allows urban informal settlers to identify in-city relocation sites as an alternative to distant or off-city relocation.

"Ipinagmamalaki ng pamahalaan ang proyektong ito dahil sa kauna-unahang pagkakataon, magkatuwang ang gobyerno at ang people’s organizations sa pagbubuo ng plano para sa pabahay ng mga kapatid nating informal settlers,"Roxas said.

The payment depends on the capacity of the beneficiaries to pay.

Architect Albert Santos Zambrano of the DSWD said each building will have a rainwater harvesting system that will allow building occupants to harvest water during the rainy season.

"It also has cross ventilation allowing wind to pass through and circulate in the unit, hence, will save the occupants in terms of electricity cost,” he said.

He said the building was designed to withstand strong earthquakes.

"The foundation is 1.5 meters deep.  We did it because the soil along the Estero de San Miguel is soft to make the building’s foundation stronger. The materials used are also complaint of the building code.  It can withstand an intensity 7 earthquake," he said.

The model units that have been completed early this month are part of a three-storey tenement, which can accommodate two families and a commercial space at the ground floor.

Among beneficiaries of the program are 105 ISFs on Legarda Street and 260 ISFs on P. Casal Street, both along Estero de San Miguel; 149 ISFs in Estero de San Sebastian; and 63 in Estero de Quiapo.

ARCHITECT ALBERT SANTOS ZAMBRANO CASAL STREET DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS AND DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL WELFARE AND DEVELOPMENT ESTERO IWAS KALAMIDAD LEGARDA STREET OPLAN LIKAS SAN MIGUEL
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