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Cebu News

Over drainage project: Rama to meet SRP developers

Jean Marvette A. Demecillo/NSA - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama is set to meet with the three giant developers at the South Road Properties to inquire on the status of the drainage master plan in the area. 

This after Rama received reports that one of the developers asked the city government to undertake the drainage project itself since it has the money for the undertaking.

“I will meet them what happened. I have no idea about that. I will have to reconvene them,” said Rama, adding that he will meet with the developers probably next week.

Rama said he has not yet also received letters from any of the developers — SM Prime Holdings, Filinvest Land, Inc., and AyalaLand — regarding the matter.

“It’s better to hear them out because always remember we are always propagating people-privately driven governance. That is why I do not want to make advance statements. I just want to know what’s up. I do not want to be preempting,” he added.

City Engineer Jose Marie Poblete said four consecutive Mondays have already passed but members of the task force created to address the drainage problem at SRP have not met yet to discuss the project.

Poblete said it seems that a developer has lost interest to undertake the project, saying that the city has collected P8.3 billion from the sale of its 45.2 hectare-lot at SRP.

According to Poblete, the project has to move forward since the developers have hired the services of DCCD Engineering Corporation to formulate the detailed engineering design of the drainage master plan to solve the flooding problem at SRP.

Poblete admitted that his department has no technical expertise necessary to formulate the drainage plan.

“Ang reason man gud ato nga sila (developers would undertake the study) is for expediency ba. We believe nga kon private mas dali. Sa ato man gud, first, we don’t have budget. Budget is different from fund source. We don’t have the appropriation to hire consultant to design. On the surface, I would believe di na kaya sa among existing technical people kay it involves a lot of studies. Hydrogology, something nga wala sa atong capability,” he said.  Poblete said the project would be faster if undertaken by private firms as it would no longer have to go through the bureaucratic processes of the government.

The city government created the task force after receiving letters from FLI concerning the flooding dilemma in the area every time there is heavy downpour. The task force is headed by FLI vice president Allan Alfon and SRP Management Office manager Roberto Varquez.

FLI is developing 40 hectares of the 300-hectare property under a joint venture agreement with the city. It is also developing another 10.6 hectare in the area.

Further, FLI owns another 19.2-hectare of the SRP.

SM, on the other hand, owns 30 hectares where the SM Seaside City is located.  The consortium of Ayala Land-Cebu Holdings Inc. and SM Prime Holding also owns a 26.3-hectare property in the area.

Sought for comment, Cerwin Eviota, spokesperson of FLI, said he has no knowledge that FLI sent a letter to the city that it will no longer pursue with the study.  Eviota said he only remembered the letter asking the city on the status of the road project.

“As far as I know, the drainage master plan that the three developers are working, it’s a work in progress,” he said. — (FREEMAN)

ACIRC

ALLAN ALFON

AYALA LAND-CEBU HOLDINGS INC

CEBU CITY MAYOR MICHAEL RAMA

CERWIN EVIOTA

CITY

CITY ENGINEER JOSE MARIE POBLETE

DEVELOPERS

ENGINEERING CORPORATION

POBLETE

RAMA

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