Wednesday, May 27, 2009 [ sunstar.com.ph ]
By Debra Magallon-Estero
FILINVEST Land Inc. (FLI) is determined to begin the development of its project at the South Road Properties (SRP) early next year despite Capitol’s move to bring up the FLI and Cebu City joint venture to a congressional inquiry.
“The (deal) is a good way for Cebuanos to feel proud.... This is going to be the next global city in the Philippines,” Tristan Las Marias, FLI vice president for the Visayas and Mindanao, said in a press conference yesterday.
He said it is better to focus on how to help the Cebuanos benefit from the SRP and for the local economy to improve.
“Given the opportunity, this will translate to more jobs, more taxes and better services,” he added.
Las Marias, however, believes that the political issues raised against the company’s investment in SRP have become fewer.
By the end of this year, he said FLI is also expected to complete the master plan for the whole 40-hectare parcel of land that is covered by its joint venture with City Hall.
“As soon as the master plan and the permits are granted, then we are ready to break ground,” he said.
Under the contract of the FLI-Cebu City joint venture, the development master plan for the property is to be approved by the City Council within 10 to 12 months after the contract signing last February.
FLI has committed to invest P25 billion on the development of the property, spread over 20 years.
Las Marias said that based on the master plan, the property will be mainly multi-residential type of development.
Since the growing international trend is toward the creation of eco-cities, the design will also adopt environment friendly components.
The still-to-be-named project, said Las Marias, will have fewer roads, more pedestrian lanes and central parks where people can converge.
“It will also be a self-sustaining multi-residential project,” he said, adding that within the property, there will be schools, church, central terminal stations and commercial areas.
FLI engaged the services of foreign consultants and international master planners for the development design.
“We want (the development) to have an international flavor to sell it not just locally but also internationally,” said Las Marias.
He also said that FLI is open to talk to other developers that have plans to invest there to accommodate offices and businesses. He added that this will result in an integrated land use and a complimentary product mix at SRP.