Davao City to build P247 million drainage project

The project, part of the P990 million loaned by the city government from Land Bank of the Philippines earlier this year,  has been awarded to David M. Consunji Inc. on a design-and-build package.

DMCI's bid was P247 million, P3 million below the P250 million allotted by the city from the loan. Duterte said the excess will be reserved for price adjustments.

Groundbreaking ceremonies were held Monday in each of the six areas identified as priority in Barangay Lizada, Toril; McArthur Highway-Tulip Drive junction; Sta. Ana– Suazo-Boulevard area; Brgy. Obrero; Lanang; and NHA Buhangin.

Duterte said it won't really stop the perennial flood problem of the city but at least address the problem in the major flood-prone areas.  

In Barangay Lizada, floodwaters could reach above waist level in some parts when rain falls heavily, said a resident who attended the formal rites in J. Ferriols Elementary School.

Floodwaters deter traffic along McArthur Highway corner Tulip Drive in Matina.

City Administrator Wendell Avisado told reporters before the groundbreaking rites that bulk of construction will be next year, but construction will start right away.

He said the contractor has to evaluate if it will construct new lines or just rehabilitate existing drainage system. "But they have to work within the P247 million budget," he said. Avisado said the City Engineers' Office conducted a pre-engineering study to assess the work needed before it opened the bidding.

Duterte told the crowd in Lizada that the project involves increasing size of the pipes.

The drainage project should solve the flood problem of the city for the time being, Avisado said. "But in the long run, we still do not know," he said, adding it depends on the carrying capacity of the infrastructure projects.

Duterte cited the "changing world" which is battling with the problem of global warming. He said global warming increases rainfall and contributes to flooding.  

Avisado also cited the increasing rate of inmigration to Davao City, which affects the demand to build more projects with greater carrying capacity.

Avisado said the present flood problem is exacerbated by the lack of coordination in the implementation of the previous drainage projects. He said there are portions of the existing system where drainage levels do not match. "So instead of draining water, it is flowed back," he said.

The last major drainage project here was in 1996, Avisado said. (Walter I. Balane/MindaNews)