SC order halting Torre construction worries developers

 

The Chamber of Real Estate and Builders’ Associations Inc. (Creba) warned on Thursday that the temporary restraining order slapped against the controversial Torre de Manila condominium project was sending the wrong message to investors who wanted to support the country’s economic development.

Aside from expressing its support for one of its members, DMCI Homes, which is also the project developer, Creba said that TRO had exposed one of the major stumbling blocks faced by the real estate industry.

“The local government units (LGUs) are sometimes not properly attuned to the realities of the bigger picture. Their concerns are mostly parochial and hamper the overall growth or overall development. A case in point would be the Torre de Manila project wherein the developer, despite having all permits in place, is being penalized,” Creba president Noel M. Cariño told reporters in a briefing yesterday.

“We feel this is a concern that should not be taken lightly because we would like to believe we are governed by the laws and regulations that are in place and as long as you follow these laws and regulations, then you should be protected… This is a very dangerous situation for developers and for investors as the TRO sends [the] wrong message to every body,” he added.

The Supreme Court last month issued an order temporarily halting the construction of the 49-story Torre de Manila which critics assailed for ruining the sight line of the Rizal Monument. The order stemmed from the September 2014 petition filed by the Knights of Rizal which wants the building demolished.

Creba national chair Charlie A.V. Gorayeb added that they were hoping the high tribunal would decide in favor of DMCI Homes which went ahead with the project after securing all the necessary permits and requirements as mandated by both local and national laws.

“We’re just pinning our hope on the honorable members of the Supreme Court who we hope and pray will see the light, so to speak, at the end of the tunnel… The government must put its act together so we in the business community would not find ourselves in a compromising situation. Billions (of pesos) have been poured into this project only to be stopped by reasons that are not within the company’s radar when it started planning the project,” he added.

Creba is the recognized umbrella organization of some 4,000 firms, individuals and associations directly or indirectly involved in land and housing, construction, allied industries and various related professional fields.

 

By: Amy R. Remo

Philippine Daily Inquirer | July 10, 2015

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