By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat
The P13.16-billion National Government Administrative Center (NGAC) at the New Clark City broke ground yesterday.
The event was attended by high-ranking government officials led by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade, DPWH Secretary Mark Villar and BCDA President Vince Dizon graced the ceremonies together with local officials led by Tarlac Governor Susan Yap and Capas, Tarlac Mayor Reynaldo Catacutan.
MTD Capital Berhad of Malaysia won the bid to build the government hub in Tarlac, according to the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).
BCDA said that MTD submitted its proposal and underwent the Competitive Challenge process.
Phase 1 of the 200-hectare National Government Administrative Center involves the development of back-up offices of various agencies to ensure continuous business operations and services for the people in case of disaster or national calamities. There will also be a one-stop-shop for all the businesses located in Region 3.
Phase 1A, which will consist of sports facilities, will be completed in time for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games which the Philippines will be hosting.
These facilities include a world-class Sports Complex with an Aquatics and Athletics Center will be completed in less than two years and will serve as a venue for the athletics and water sports event of the 30th SEA Games scheduled on the last quarter of 2019. The Stadium shall have a seating capacity of 20,000 while the Aquatic Center shall have a seating capacity of 2,000.
Once completed in 2019, the project’s Phase1B will commence for the construction of additional government office buildings, government housing units, and support service facilities on a 20-hectare land.
Aside from this, small-scale retail and services facilities including banks, health centers, and hotels will be put up in adjacent zones.
New Clark City, BCDA’s most ambitious project to date, is a new metropolis that will rise within the Clark Special Economic Zone, in Capas and Bamban, Tarlac.
It is envisioned to be the country’s first and only smart and green city, which will feature mixed-use real estate developments, an agro-industrial park, and a food processing terminal.
Also present in the ceremony were Senator Joel Villanueva, Representatives Karlo Nograles, Albee Benitez, Pia Cayetano, PMS Head Ferdinand Cui, Undersecretaries Rene Solidum, Cathy Cabral, Karen Jimeno and Finance Assistant Secretary Paola Alvarez.