Overflow of Marikina river due to siltation, says land developer

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Defending itself from the accusations of river encroachment, property developer Ortigas & Co. has blamed erosion and siltation for the overflow of the Marikina River during hours of nonstop rain.

The silt along the downstream of the Manggahan Floodway, if removed from the river, could fill 1,550 dump trucks of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, said Bienvenido Galang, vice president of DCCD, an engineering consultancy firm hired by the Ortigas & Co. Limited Partnership for its Circulo Verde project.

Circulo Verde is a 12-hectare residential development project in Barangay (village) Bayan, Quezon City, which is surrounded by Marikina River.

Galang said his computation was based on a recent study showing that the downstream of the Marikina River currently has 24, 985 cubic meters of silt.

This amount of silt, he said, was a result of an erosion and flashflood upstream when tropical storm “Ondoy” hit the city in 2009.

“Since then, it has not been dredged and thus, greatly diminished the carrying capacity of the river and caused its unusual flow,” Galang said in an interview.

Marikina Vice Mayor Jose Fabian Cadiz earlier claimed the river rose unexpectedly by five meters in a span of 10 hours of nonstop rain and blamed this on the alleged encroachments on the river.

City officials last week quoted an MMDA official accusing the Circulo Verde of constricting the width of the river from 150 meters to 50 meters from 1993 to the present.

Ortigas & Co. repeatedly denied their claims, saying it has not built on anything beyond the bounds of its property nor has it enlarged its property in any way.

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