38,000 squatters benefit from Northrail relocation program
Manila (23 February) -- A total of 38,206 informal family settlers will benefit from the Northrail Relocation Program (NRP) affected by the North Luzon Railway System Project. This is in accordance with President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's order for the National Housing Authority (NHA) to implement the Rail Related Resettlement and Relocation Programs - in line with the Super Regions - Luzon Urban Beltway economic blueprint.
The Northrail Relocation Program (NRP) has been developing relocation sites for informal family settlers from the Philippine National Railway (PNR) rail rights-of-way from Kalookan City to Malolos, Bulacan.
The NRP is now being implemented in four Phases: Phase 1, Section 1 - Caloocan, Malabon and Valenzuela in Metro Manila and Meycauayan, Marilao, Bocuae; Phase 1, Section 2 - Barrio Longos in Malolos City and Calumpit, Bulacan toward the province of Pampanga; Phase 2 - Clark Air Base in Angeles City, Pampanga to Subic Bay in Olongapo City; Phase 3 - Clark to La Union; and Phase 4 - Caloocan City to Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City.
Based on the data from the NHA as of January 31, 2009, the Northrail Relocation Program (Phase 1, Sections 1 and 2) has already generated 37,945 lots, and developed 17,998 structures for the informal family settlers affected by the project.
The NRP - Phase 1, Section 1 has already reached completion with total generated lots of 18,741 and structures of 17,998 in nine (9) relocation sites in Meycauayan, Marilao, Bocaue, Sta. Maria, Balagtas, Guiguinto, and Malolos. Of this, 17,415 informal settler families have been actually relocated by the NHA.
The NRP - Phase 1, Section 2, according to NHA, is now being developed in eight relocation sites in Malolos and Calumpit, Bulacan; Apalit, Minalin, Sto. Tomas, San Fernando, Angeles, and Mabalacat, Pampanga, with a total generated lots of 19,204. The construction of structures for these lots is in the offing.
The Arroyo administration is relentless in pushing the implementation of resettlement program to protect the illegal settlers living along the railways and road projects, and provide them with safe dwelling places. The relocation of informal settlers would likewise help decongest Metro Manila and redound to more socio-economic benefits to the people.
The NRP is a component program of the North Luzon Railway System Project aimed to provide fast and reliable mass transit system from Caloocan City to Clark and the provinces of Central and Northern Luzon at an approximate distance of 80.291 kilometers. (PIA-NCR) [top]