• New, safe settlement to rise in Tondo

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    FORMER tenants of a dilapidated tenement in Tondo, Manila will have new and safe homes soon, Vice President Jejomar Binay said on Thursday.

    According to Binay, the National Housing Authority (NHA) will construct four 5-storey buildings to replace the dilapidated Diosdado Macapagal Tenement.

    The agency expects the New Vitas Low Rise Buildings, which will consist of 240 units, to be completed within a year and a half.

    Binay, who is also the housing czar said, former occupants of the tenement will be given priority to avail themselves of housing units.

    “We assure you that the new building to be constructed will be safe and decent for living,” said Binay during the ground breaking ceremony.

    In 2011, NHA relocated 570 families living in the rundown building. Nineteen opted to avail the Balik Probinsya Program; 445 were resettled in Towerville VI in Brgy. Gaya-Gaya, City of San Jose del Monte, Bulacan; and 106 were given homes in other resettlement sites.

    Binay recalled that former residents had been reluctant to evacuate the condemned 7-storey apartment building.

    Built in 1963, the old tenement was declared “unsafe, high-risk, ruinous, and dangerous to its tenants” by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

    NHA General Manager Chito Cruz said the New Vitas Low Rise Buildings will occupy 4,598 square meters of land area. Each unit will have a floor area of 22 to 24 square meters.

    “The new tenement is only one of the various housing projects that the agency is currently undertaking,” Cruz said. RITCHIE A. HORARIO

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