Dalipe thanks DHSUD as Zambo pilots PCE project

Mayor John Dalipe has expressed his profound gratitude and appreciation to the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) for choosing Zamboanga City as a pilot area for the Planned City Extension (PCE) Project that seeks to develop a new town center for Zamboanga.

Following the principles of a sustainable urban development prescribed by the UN-Habitat, the Zamboanga City extension project site covers a total land area of 879.52 hectares located in Barangay Mercedes, bordered by the four rural barangays of Talabaan, Culianan, Boalan and Zambowood.

The site is also adjacent to the New Zamboanga International Airport, which the Dalipe administration has been pushing hard to start construction soon after the current land acquisition phase is completed.

“I am grateful and thankful to the DHSUD for choosing Zamboanga City as pilot area for this very laudable project,” Dalipe said during his meeting with representatives from the DHSUD central and regional offices at City Hall Conference Room on Wednesday, April 3.

Mayor Dalipe pointed out that Zamboanga City under his administration envisions its Planned City Extension as a growth node that will trigger development in the underserved areas of the city.

An initiative of the DHSUD, the planned city extension project is an area that the city has identified as suitable locations to absorb urban growth, to maximize the opportunities and to minimize negative externalities that come with rapid urban growth.

The site in Mercedes is envisioned to be a new town center, where public/community facilities like parks, schools, health clinics, daycare centers, police and fire stations and places of worship, are clustered—integrating new developments with the existing residential subdivisions, commercial facilities, and other permanent structures on site.

It was further revealed that Zamboanga City is the first and only PCE pilot area in Mindanao. The two others are located in the cities of Butuan and Tacloban, both in Luzon.

After meeting with the mayor, the DHSUD delegates and their counterparts from the different city offices headed by the CPDO proceeded to Barangay Mercedes in the east coast for the pre-work assessment of the proposed city extension site.

Afterwards, they convened at a local hotel for the two-day PCE Planning Workshop.

Present during the meeting were City Planning and Development Coordinator Ma. Luz Agbayani, Assistant CPDO Christopher Lapinid, Chief Executive Assistant William Mariaga, DHSUD Regional Director Roland Eta and staff, and representatives from the different city offices.—(Vic Larato)