Davao City, JICA to undertake new drainage plan study

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/09 January) – City officials and representatives from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) are in talks for a new study on the drainage plan of the city.

City Planning and Development Office head Ivan Cortez said the study will include a thorough look at the movement and behavior of the city’s riverways and waterways.

He said he is optimistic the project will push through as JICA responded positively when the city proposed it during their meeting in August 2016.

“The proposal was taken very positively by JICA that it will be undertaken in the city. They will just have to finish some of their projects before they proceed with this,” he said.

Once approved, JICA consultants will begin the work within the first quarter of this year.

Cortez said the city needs this kind of project since it is growing fast with the entry of new investors.

“We have low-lying areas and most of these are found in the urban district, the poblacion area. If we want to protect some of the investments already on the ground, we need to have a modern approach with our drainage projects,” he said.

Last year, city engineer Joseph Felizarta said they met with JICA representatives and the Department of Public Works and Highways to discuss the upgrading of the city drainage masterplan.

He said the masterplan needs updating to include the rivers and canals in the suburbs to come up with a better plan for anti-flooding infrastructure projects.

He said the masterplan upgrade will be conducted within the year.

He said the masterplan may include actions on the informal settlers along the riverbanks, which are considered to be a danger zone.

He said JICA has chosen the city because it is easy to implement a project here.

The JICA chose the city as the sole recipient of a P4-million technology which converts throwaway cooking oil to biodiesel.(Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)