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Resettlement site readied in northern Cebu town

/ 12:02 AM May 27, 2014

CEBU CITY—At least 128 houses will soon rise on a new resettlement site in Barangay Paypay, Daanbantayan town, for the survivors of Supertyphoon “Yolanda.”

The $2-million project will benefit 750 displaced families and is being undertaken by the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) in partnership with France-Philippines United Action (FPUA), Habitat for Humanity, the municipality of Daanbantayan and the provincial government.

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It aims to build typhoon- and earthquake-resilient houses, said PRC chair Richard Gordon during a visit to Cebu province on May 16.

Gordon also said four multipurpose buildings would  be erected to house health centers and day-care centers.

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Daanbantayan Mayor Augusto Corro said the 1.3-hectare land in Paypay was donated by his younger sister Elaine.

Gordon and Corro led the groundbreaking ceremony on May 16. They were joined by Don Lee, FPUA committee chair and Lafarge Holdings Philippines Inc. president; Cyril Rocke, president of the French Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, and PRC secretary general Gwendolyn Pang.

“This is our long-term commitment for the people in Daanbantayan,” Rocke told reporters.

Houses that will be built in the area will be resistant to earthquakes as strong as Intensity 8 and can withstand wind velocity of 275 kilometers per hour, Lee said in a press conference.

These will provide “much cooler roofing” for the beneficiaries, he said.

He pointed out that a special cement called “Kapit-Balay” would be used. The cement makes use of fly ash, a byproduct of coal-fired power plants and an additive to allow “good workability, smoother finish, enhanced durability and better strength,” he explained.

Lee said the houses were expected to be completed within the year.

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Charlie Ayco, chief executive officer of Habitat for Humanity, said the humanitarian group would oversee the construction of the houses as well as provide contractors, foremen and volunteers.

The roads on the way to the area will be concreted and a drainage system will be installed, Ayco said.

The Paypay project is the second resettlement area in the town. The first is located in a 5,400-square-meter property in Barangay Agujo.

The provincial government donated the lot. It will accommodate 75 houses, the funding of which was donated by members of the French business community.

Construction in the “French Village” for 300 displaced residents will be finished by September. The beneficiaries have been living in danger zones and are awaiting relocation.

At least 3,000 families were displaced by Yolanda in Daanbantayan.

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