By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat
The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and its partner MTD Philippines Inc. is on track in finishing the world-class facilities in New Clark City before the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games open in November 2019.
“Phase 1 of the National Government Administrative Center in New Clark City has significantly progressed since it broke ground January this year,” BCDA President and CEO Vivencio Dizon said.
“This proves that government is true to its promise of building quality infrastructure within set deadlines,” he added.
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 disasters or national calamities.
Phase 1A will house the world-class Athletics Stadium, Aquatics Center, Athletes’ Village, and government housing which will soon benefit thousands of athletes and government workers. By the end of 2019, we will see the National Government Administrative Center completed and fully operational.
Phase 1B will involve development of more government buildings, residences and other support facilities that will commence in 2020.
The government center in New Clark City is part of President Duterte’s plan to decongest Metro Manila by decentralizing state offices from the capital.
Such move will also spur economic growth in the regions as government continues to develop areas outside Manila.
Meantime, Filinvest Land, Inc.’s (FLI) 288-hectare mixed-use industrial area in New Clark City is also in the works with the groundbreaking in early 2019.
FLI’s industrial area is envisioned to be future-ready and sustainable as it will adopt a vibrant “live-work-play” environment.
BCDA and China Gezhouba Group Company Limited (CGGC) also partnered to develop a 500-hectare mixed-use industrial park in New Clark City.
Both parties signed an agreement in November 19, 2018 during the visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping. This is anchored on Philippine and China’s program for cooperation on industrial parks.
Provision of reliable water and power utilities in New Clark City is also well underway. The city is set to have the lowest water and power rates in the country which will surely attract locators, businesses, and residents.
BCDA signed a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) with the PrimeWater consortium for water and wastewater services, which submitted the lowest bid of Php9.45 per cubic meter.
PrimeWater’s offer bested the P11.00 per cubic meter bid by the Manila Water Company.
For power distribution in New Clark City, BCDA targets to sign the JVA with the winning partner by early 2019.
The Meralco-Marubeni Consortium submitted the lower tariff bid of P0.6188 per kilowatt hour, besting the P0.9888/kwh proposal of the Aboitiz-KEPCO Consortium.
The Meralco consortium will undergo a post-qualification process before the award.
The Asian Development Bank acted as BCDA’s transaction adviser for the national government center’s power, water and wastewater infrastructures.
New Clark City is the country’s first smart, green, and resilient city, and BCDA’s most ambitious project to date. Upon full completion, the city will be the symbol of a modern and inclusive Philippines.