Riverbank Development and City Planning

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An investigative report

Transcript of Riverbank Development and City Planning

Si SENDONG ay parang TUKSO! Kayrami na niyang winasak na tahanan. Kayrami na niyang matang pinaluha. Kayrami na niyang pusong sinugatan.

What happened last December 16 and 17, 2011 for Kagay-anons brought about a traumatic life changing experience. Those were the days when water, an earthly element considered as one of mans best friends, betrayed and turned its back on everyone else who were in a deepsleep beside their loved ones.

Typhoon Sendong recognized no age, gender and status. In just a matter of hours, several properties and lives were washed away. It was like waking up in the morning and seeing yourself floating with garbage, lying beside stinking corpses, or standing on an area you could not believe there you would be. Typhoon Sendong devastated so many innocent lives and dreams silently.

The entire world witnessed this catastrophe in just a small city with approximately 600,000 people. For decades, this is the first time that hit Cagayan de Oro City and will definitely be a part of the citys history. Isla de Oro after Typhoon Sendong: Future Land Use Formulation

Present Condition

In a presentation by Engineer Mario Batar, (state his position), he showed Isla de Oros present condition. President Noynoy Aquino declared Isla de Oro as a No Build Zone. After the damages brought by Typhoon Sendong, building of any infrastructure in the area is prohibited.

However, residents did not heed this. They continuously occupy partially damaged houses without minding the risks. For this reason, the city government assigned policemen to guard the area to prevent damaged houses to be re-built. Moreover, mounds of debris still clutter the area. Since there are cluttered debris in the area, clearing operations are still on-going. This is to make sure that attempts to rebuild damaged houses will be prevented. Residents are advised that they will be transferred as soon as relocation sites are ready.

When clearing operations are finally done, the city government will not just leave Isla de Oro as it is. Instead, Mayor Vicente Emano requested President Noynoy Aquino to allow the Local Government Unit of Cagayan de Oro City to develop Isla de Oro as a recreational area or tree park.

As of now, Mayor Emano is still waiting for the approval of the president, stated Engineer Batar.Three months had passed since the typhoon Sendong visited Cagayan de Oro and took away lives, properties and livelihood. Until now, the survivors of the tragedy are struggling in coping with their losses.

These were the following people being interviewed:

Adrian Torres

Victor Delos Reyes

Nestor Dalay, Sr.

Carlos Penoliad

The following people were interviewed according to the following:

1) The notion of the people in regards with the relocation areas specified by the government.

2) The reaction and perception of the people on the upcoming projects in Isla De Oro such as conversion into Recreational area/Tree Park.

Five residents of Isla De Oro appeared in the interview and stated their reactions, perceptions and needs regarding on the upcoming developments in the area. Majority of the people were relocated in Calaanan, Tent City II for the establishing of the retaining walls along Isla De Oro. Majority of the people are gratified of the relocation areas set for them. However, their concerns on the equity of distributing their basic needs in the relocation areas are one of the biggest issues. The lack of the resources despite of the large monetary account is also one especially on education.

On the contrary, these people compliment the upcoming developments in the area because of the benefits it bring to them. Firstly, this project would help beautify the area hit by typhoon Sendong. According to them, as soon as the development of the area will commence they will be the first beneficiary of the project which will provide as there source of income. These developments would help them revive the livelihood they have lost because of the typhoon Sendong. Next, the people in the area believe that this project will somehow help improve the environment especially those part damaged by typhoon Sendong. Lastly, this project is claimed to be in collaboration with the JICA projects in connection with the dike and retaining wall. History

Now one of the most affected areas in Cagayan de Oro City during Typhoon Sendong was the Isla de Oro. History teaches us that Isla de Oro was not really formed before Cagayan de Oro became a city.According to Paulita Roa in her article in Sun Star Cagayan de Oro, this sandbar in the Cagayan River was locally known as the honasan which used to be one of the idyllic spots in town. Honasan can be reached by a boat or a raft or simply by swimming.

Years ago, the Honasan was the little paradise of the Kagay-anons, Roa added. The big and small honasan were claimed by the Salcedos and Bacas respectively. Due to heavy siltation, the small and big honasan merged and moved nearer to the bank of Burgos Street. In 1977, the honasan was finally donated to the city government. Finally a contest was made to name the island and the winning entry called it Isla de Oro. The plan was to convert the island into a tourist area but decades after, Isla de Oro became a crowded area with houses and got negative reputation as a place that was frequently hit by floods. (Roa, 2011)

Isla de Oro Profile

Isla de Oro has a land area which is more or less seven (7.0) hectares. Its land use has not been titled and is primarily owned by the city government. Before the rampaging floods brought by Typhoon Sendong, there were more or less 500 houses but now there are only about 70 houses (more or less) with 20 units occupied. Sendong flood level went as high as five (5m) meters above the ground.Golden Mile Project

Part of the city planning is its beautification and this is where the Golden Mile project comes in.

This is actually the flagship project of former city mayor Jaraula. The Golden Mile in its initial phase consists of 600 meter long walkway from city hall to the fifth (5th) Kagay-an Bridge and a one kilometer boulevard. It starts from Toribio Chaves Street to JR Borja Street.

The purpose of this project is to attract more investors and tourists, as well as to promote Cagayan de Oro River. In an interview done by Gold Star Daily to former City Mayor Tinnex Jaraula, the Golden Mile project was aimed at expanding and straightening the riverbanks to ensure a faster water flow. In addition to his interview from Gold Star Daily, Jaraulas plan was to develop a mile-long boulevard beside the river and a walkway on the other side (Carmen side) and go all the way towards JR Borja Street. Jaraula also shared to Gold Star Daily that the plan was to cut the islets and eventually erase them (the islands) for good but he ran out of time. The Golden Mile project was stopped," Jaraula told The GoldStar Daily.Moreover, this project could have been an avenue for the citys central business district. (http://cdocomerciallotforsale.blogspot.com/ p. 2, 3, 4)However, due to Typhoon Sendong, the river became swollen and the communities were flooded.Because of this, they had a hard time pursuing the Golden Mile project; especially now that the Japanese InterCooperation Agency proposed for a better flood control.JICA Flood Control The Japanese InterCooperation Agency (JICA) is an international agency which aims at helping developing countries. The JICA proposed in establishing a dike/retaining wall around the area of Cagayan de Oro River to minimize the flood towards downstream communities.

Based on a recent study done in collaboration with the JICA, the flow capacity of the Cagayan de Oro River is far smaller than the design flood of 2, 500 cubic meters per second (88, 300 feet per second). A design flood is an estimated flood design expected to reach the cubic meters mentioned by the latter. Since the river improvement is planned and analyzed, the researchers assumed that it is necessary to consider a dam/reservoir upstream to store the design flood to decrease the flood. In addition, the preliminary analysis of the researchers highlights the river improvement of the Cagayan de Oro River which can accommodate the design flood of 2,500 cubic meters per second (88,300 feet per second). The dam/reservoir together with the dike/retaining wall, is a costly beneficiary project estimated for about 17 years with the estimated amount of 11.5 billion pesos.

Improvement Plan

The Cagayan de Oro River improvement plan is composed of three (3) parts namely; alignment, longitudinal profile, and improvement method. These parts are individually relegated and incorporate to the design flood to ensure the measure that should be taken for the achievement of the purpose of the project.Alignment refers to the consideration of Cagayan de Oro in terms of its topography and land use. Longitudinal profile refers to the condition of Cagayan de Oro river bed to the bed of the Macajalar Bay. The connection of the river beds to each area may cause elevation to the river mouth area of both Cagayan de Oro River and Macajalar Bay. Improvement method focuses to the confining of flood water in the river course by dam/reservoir or dike/retaining wall to prevent overflowing of water in low areas. The shape and type of dikes are designed following the Typical Design Drawings illustrated below:

Dike Type 1

Dike Type II

Retaining Wall Type II

Phases and Target Reaches (Length) of Proposed Master Plan

The JICA project is divided into three (3) parts to track the expenses allocated for the implementation of dike and retaining wall in the Cagayan de Oro River.

The Phase 1 would approximately go for 5 years (2013-2017) with the pr