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32 stores, houses up for demolition

Thirty-three houses and establishments, including several street barbecue eateries, at the corner of C. Bangoy Street and Roxas Avenue have been served with notice of illegal construction.

“Based on the conducted relocation survey by the City Engineer’s Office, it was found out that the area is within of the city government property (and) the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP),” said Engr. Cirinia Grace Catubig, the officer-in-charge of the Office of the City Building Official.

The establishments do not have proper building permits despite staying in the area for decades already.

According to Catubig, aside from commercial establishments, there are also residential buildings, some are even used as boarding houses.

She said those establishments and houses were used to be owned by pioneering employees of the fire bureau. “Eventually, they had the establishments for rent,” Catubig said. The property is beside the Bangoy station of BFP and the Philippine Red Cross-Davao Chapter building, just in front of Freedom Park (Clifford Park side).

The building official said they issued the notice last Aug. 5. Most of the concerned residents received it just within the week.

Based on the notice, the buildings violated the National Building Code of the Philippines (PD 1096) and the Republic Act No. 7279, also known as “Urban Development and Housing Act.

According to Catubig, they gave 15 days from the receipt of the notice to voluntarily remove or demolish the structure.

Catubig said they are ready to issue the second notice that will give them another five days.

“The next move thereafter is to endorse them to the City Engineer’s Office for the Recommendation for Demolition said,” she added.

According to Catubig, some of the affected residents already went to her office and affirmed that they are willing to cooperate, recognizing that they really are within the property of the city government.

Nida Artiola, a renter in the area with a small store for 30 years, said she is willing to comply with the order but pleads for help from the local government.

“We have stayed here for three decades already. My children grew up here. If the demolition will be pursued, we have no choice but to comply. However, although we are just renters, we call for the city government to help us with the relocation.

The owners of these establishments are retired fire officials and they don’t need the relocation,” Artiola said.

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