Villages, not just houses | Inquirer News

Villages, not just houses

/ 09:15 AM August 16, 2014

HANS SY (left), president of SM Prime Holdings Inc., leads the groundbreaking ceremony in Concepcion town in Iloilo province for a 200-house village for survivors of Supertyphoon “Yolanda.” NESTOR P. BURGOS JR.

CONCEPCION, Iloilo—Since February, Manilyn Costorio has been staying with her husband and two children, ages 5 and 3, in one unit of a bunkhouse in Concepcion town in northern Iloilo province.

Their house at the town center was among those destroyed by strong winds and storm surges brought by “Yolanda” when the supertyphoon ravaged wide areas in the Visayas on Nov. 8 last year.


Five months pregnant with her third child, Costorio dreams of having a house again, and this will soon come true. Her family is among the 1,000 in the Visayas that will be permanently relocated in villages for typhoon survivors.


The one-hectare villages are being put up by SM Group through SM Cares with land donors and other partners.

In Concepcion and Bogo City in Cebu province, the villages will have 200 houses each. A similar community will rise in Ormoc City in Leyte province on a property donated by the Codilla clan.

In Tacloban City, 400 houses will be built on a 2-ha lot by the Archdiocese of Palo in Barangay New Kawayan, according to Marissa Fernan, vice president of SM Prime Holdings Inc.

Hans Sy, company president, led the groundbreaking for the SM Cares village in Concepcion on Aug. 9. “It feels very good to be able to help out,” Sy said.

The whole project will cost about P260 million. Each single-story house costs P200,000, with a provision for a second level. It has a floor area of 20.25 square meters and a lot size of 23.25 sq m.

The houses are designed to be typhoon-resistant and can withstand wind velocity of up to 250 kilometers per hour without major damage, according to the SM Cares website.


Each village will also have a school, a playground and a basketball court as well as  livelihood and community centers. A 5-meter-wide road network, perimeter fence and utility are provided.

Fernan said the livelihood component of the project would be provided by  Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc., in coordination with  SM Group.

Beneficiaries are obliged to help take care of the village, including the painting of the houses, beautification of the community, planting flower plants in the vicinity and maintaining cleanliness and peace and order.

Under the project guidelines, no individual titles will be issued to prevent syndicates from taking advantage of and selling the houses. But succeeding generations of the beneficiaries can inherit rights to the houses.

The first SM Cares Village was launched on Dec. 22 last year in Barangay Polambato, Bogo, one of the northern areas in Cebu that were heavily damaged by Yolanda.

Heirs of Wenceslao and Margarita Briones-Fernan donated the 1-ha lot and another hectare near the relocation site for two six-room school buildings that will be donated by  SM Foundation.

Construction of the houses started in May, said Marissa Fernan, a scion of the land donor. The village is set to be inaugurated on Nov. 9, a day after the first anniversary of the typhoon, in ceremonies that will include the turnover of the houses to beneficiaries.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

In Iloilo, the relocation village will rise in Barangay Bacjawan Sur in Concepcion, 109 kilometers northeast of Iloilo City. The property was donated by Ilonggo philanthropist Ruth Tirol-Jarantilla.

TAGS: bunkhouse, disaster, supertyphoon

© Copyright 1997-2024 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.