Manila councilors declare Sta. Ana a heritage zone
Chalk one up for heritage conservationists.
A resolution declaring part of Sta. Ana, Manila, a heritage zone was passed by the city council on third and final reading on Tuesday afternoon.
The ordinance authored by Councilor Jocelyn B. Dawis-Asuncion classified as a histo-cultural heritage/overlay zone (O-CHC) the Sta. Ana area bounded by Pasig River on the north and east, the PNR railroad on the northwest, M. Carreon and Tejeron on the west and Del Pan on the southeast.
“An O-CHC zone shall be used primarily for areas containing registered historical-cultural heritage resources that deserve special consideration for protection and conservation due to their special character, architectural value or aesthetic interest wherein they contribute to the city’s collective understanding of its historical development and cultural heritage,” Asuncion explained in her ordinance.
Sta. Ana is loaded with historical sites. An excavation site at the Sta. Ana Church yielded 11th-century Sung dynasty pottery and the church’s “camarin,” which have been declared national treasures.
The passage of the ordinance is viewed as a step toward protecting heritage-rich areas in Metro Manila.
Asuncion told the Inquirer that it was also one of the requirements for the National Historical Commission of the Philippines toward declaring the district a national heritage zone, possibly the first in the metropolis.
With the approval of the ordinance, Asuncion said they would create the Sta. Ana Histo-Cultural Planning Committee to “identify and protect the most important historic resources” in the area and draft guidelines.
Under the ordinance, no one will be able to alter or demolish a historic site or any area within the O-CHC zone without a permit from the committee.
Asuncion explained that the ordinance was aimed at safeguarding the city’s historic and cultural heritage as embodied and reflected in historic areas, places, buildings and structures.
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