New Clark City: The Philippines’ Next Big Metropolis

MUNI > TRENDS

As the present administration tackles on different developments which target the improvement of the country, one specific project seen to be the future of the Philippines is New Clark City.

The New Clark City project is one of Bases Conversion and Development Authority’s (BCDA) big-ticket projects under the government’s “Build, Build, Build” program. BCDA is a state-run agency created in 1992 mandated to help strengthen the armed forces while building great cities.

New Clark City will be the Philippines’ first smart, green, and resilient metropolis. Located in Capas, Tarlac, this 450-hectare project is envisioned to be a hub of agro-industrial activities, cutting-edge technology and logistics companies, well-equipped backup government centers, and world-class sports facilities.

Last January 23, 2018, the National Government Administrative Center (NGAC) project, one of the components of New Clark City, broke ground. NGAC has a budget of Php 13 billion. Once done, it will hold satellite offices of different government agencies to make sure that operations and services continue in case of disasters or natural calamities.

Phase 1A of NGAC also includes an ongoing 40-hectare construction of world-class sports facilities to be used for the Southeast Asian Games in November 2019. Meanwhile, other notable components of New Clark City are mixed use industrial real estate developments, Philippine Sports City, food processing terminal and international food market, mixed income development housing, and agro-industrial park.

To push forward with their numerous projects, BCDA has engaged in public-private partnerships. BCDA has tied up with urban planning and engineering firms AeCom, Nippon Koei and Philkoei International Inc.  to help the vision for New Clark City be a reality. On February 12, 2018, BCDA and Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation for Transport and Urban Development signed a memorandum of cooperation with urban, industrial, and infrastructure consulting firm Surbana Jurong of Singapore to start the full development of New Clark City.

In addition, the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) also granted construction firm AlloyMTD Philippines a Php 9.5 billion loan for the development of NGAC. BCDA President Vince Dizon also said that to help fund the Clark City development, BCDA will sell up to 60 hectares of real estate in Taguig City near the financial district of Makati, where land prices are at a record high.

Department of Finance (DOF) secretary Carlos Dominguez III added that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Fund for International Development (OFID) has offered financial assistance to the administration’s “Build, Build, Build” project as well. Meanwhile, this coming May 29, bidding for New Clark City’s electricity and water supply will take place at the BCDA office in Bonifacio Global City.

According to BCDA, New Clark City is a strategic investment opportunity. It can help create jobs and decongest key cities like Metro Manila. This project can also change the way we build and develop our cities.

“Bold and confident, this modern Philippine city will be our new face to the world. We believe we can redefine and make our standards fit with our modern needs and achieve authenticity in our cities,” Architect Royal Pineda of Budji+Royal architectural firm said about New Clark City.

New Clark City will also be designed to withstand calamities. “The objective is not simply to build a disaster-resilient city, but rather a successful, innovative and economically competitive city that  is also disaster-resilient,” said Benjamin Preston, a researcher at RAND Corporation, a non-profit, global policy think tank.

With the rise of New Clark City, growth and progress are within reach.

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