STA. CRUZ, Laguna, Apr 5 (Mabuhay) — President Benigno S. Aquino III led Friday the launching of the Laguna Lake flood control and river protection project that will shield communities along the lake from raging flood waters during rainy seasons.
Upon arriving at the project site, the President was briefed by Secretary Neric Acosta, the Presidential Adviser for Environmental Protection and Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) general manager, about the flood control project.
Acosta said the P180-million flood control project in Sta. Cruz is the first to be implemented and other four projects in several other locations along the Laguna Lake rim will also soon start.
The government is prioritizing the Sta. Cruz flood control project following the visit of the President in the area after the onslaught of habagat in Laguna, Acosta said.
Sta. Cruz was heavily affected by the flooding and had the largest number of hectarage affected as well as families devastated by flood waters, he added.
Acosta said they expect the Sta. Cruz flood control project to be completed by November or December this year. They also target to complete the entire flood control system along the lake by April next year, he added.
The Sta. Cruz flood control project launched by the President involves the construction of river control structures with reinforced concrete river walls on steel sheet piles. The DPWH will also excavate earthen embankments to widen the river and increase its flood conveyance capacity, according to a project briefer.
It is designed to restore damaged river walls, extend length of slope protection and balance the habitat and recreational function of the area. The project design includes rock grade stabilization, rock bank protection and the use of bio-engineering techniques.
The government is implementing the flood control project based on the memorandum of agreement between the LLDA and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
The LLDA and the DPWH have P780 million to complete the project that will rehabilitate and construct river control structures in Sta. Cruz, Mabitac, Sta. Maria, Binan, and San Pedro.
The P780-million fund is part of the P5 billion allocation approved by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) board chaired by the President.
The government allocated P5 billion for the Metro Manila Flood Management Master Plan that establishes the roadmap for a sustainable and effective flood control management of the DPWH in cooperation with the LLDA and local government units (LGUs). (MNS)