Mayor Marcy bats for intercity cooperation to address flooding in Marikina

To address the issue of flooding in Marikina City, Mayor Marcelino "Marcy" Teodoro said on Monday, May 23, that the local government is willing to cooperate with neighboring cities to form agreements on land-use and calamity response.

In an interview with DZRH, Teodoro said that talks between and among local government units (LGU) are important to implement more effective solutions to the flooding issue.

"At the regional level, referring to the immediate areas here like Antipolo, Montalban, San Mateo, naguusap-usap kami on how to regulate quarrying, conversion ng mga properties dito – marami kasi naco-convert to residential, ginagawang subdivision – 'yung density requirements hindi naco-comply (At the regional level, referring to the immediate areas here like Antipolo, Montalban, San Mateo, we have been conducting talks on how to regulate quarrying, conversion of properties, many of which are being turned into residential subdivisions, and there is failure in compliance with density requirements)," Teodoro said.

Teodoro also said he plans to initiate an interoperability initiative between cities in terms of responding to calamities, noting the creation of a single cluster for rescue and recovery.

The Marikina LGU has been in communication with both the Pasig and San Juan city governments to enable capacity-sharing activities in times of crises such as shared use and acquisition of equipment, he added.

Aiding in the conservation and protection of the Masungi Reserve located at the Marikina Watershed is also included in the LGU's plans to ease the grave impact of typhoons in the city.

"Ang pinakamalaking hamon ngayon ay ang perennial flooding sa Marikina. Mayroon tayong integrated flood control programs na in-implement using a whole of government approach, na 'yung mga project ng national at local ay synchronized natin (The biggest challenge facing the city is perennial flooding. We have integrated flood control programs that we're implementing using a whole of government approach wherein the projects of the national and local are synchronized)," Teodoro said.

To date, Marikina City has two pumping stations constructed and maintained by the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) located at the Provident Village in Barangay Tañong.

The city government conducts its own maintenance activities for its local pumping station in Barangay Concepcion Dos, regulating its water level and carrying capacity.

Dredging operations to widen the scope of the Marikina River are also on-going.

On March 9, the responsibilities of the dredging activities for the Marikina River Restoration Project (MRRP) were turned over to the Flood Control Management Cluster of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Unified Project Management Office (UPMO).

These operations by the Task Force- Build Back Better (TF-BBB) were announced on Feb. 17, 2021. The TF-BBB turned over the MRRP to the Marikina local government on July 21, 2021.

Bamboo trees have also been planted to mitigate erosion of the riverbanks with the help of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

According to Teodoro, the local government acquired five fully-functional dredging machines since the start of 2022.

With these equipment, the city is able to operate independently from national agencies in maintaining the ideal width and depth of the river.