Environmental planners’ roles in urban dev’t, housing cited

Environmental planners’ roles in urban dev’t, housing cited

Human Settlements and Urban Development Secretary Eduardo del Rosario

MANILA – Housing czar Secretary Eduardo del Rosario cited the significant role of environmental planners in pushing sustainable housing and urban development in the country.

Del Rosario said the planning expertise of these environmentalists could be useful in the government’s future housing and urban development programs.

“Environmental planners play a key role in enhancing human settlements and urban development in our country, especially amidst the coronavirus pandemic,” del Rosario said during the virtual celebration of the Philippine Institute of Environmental Planners’ (PIEP) 51st founding anniversary and 29th National Convention on Saturday.

Del Rosario said the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) has been pushing for close collaboration with all stakeholders, particularly with the private sector, in crafting human settlements and urban development programs.

He said the government targets to maintain strong linkage and partnership with the environment planners—as DHSUD moves toward a 20-year housing and urban development strategic plan and roadmap aimed at providing adequate and affordable housing units for all Filipinos.

“As we craft our 20-year National Housing Roadmap, we welcome inputs from our partner-environment planners to enhance our flagship program BALAI – or Building Adequate, Livable, Affordable and Inclusive Filipino communities,” del Rosario said.

Meanwhile, del Rosario said this year’s PIEP’s anniversary theme: “Rethinking the PIEP Agenda Beyond its 50th and Engaging Environment Planners in the Context of Covid-19 as the Way Forward” is a “very timely” advocacy as the country continues to grapple with the pandemic.

Del Rosario cited the “need for better collaboration and pro-active planning” in pushing for an inclusive policy framework within the housing sector while addressing the challenges posed by the current health crisis, rapid urbanization issues, and climate change.

“Now that all of us are still adapting to the ‘new normal’ brought about by the pandemic, rethinking or reviewing our programs, both short and long terms, is indeed inevitable,” he said.

PIEP is the sole accredited professional organization by the Professional Regulatory Board of Environment Planning.

PIEP’s national convention coincides with the 71st World Town Planning Day.

Delegates include urban and environmental planners, architects, engineers, real estate practitioners, developers, environmental scientists, academics, planning officers from both national government agencies and local government units, and emerging planners in the country and overseas.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte signed into law Proclamation No.847 on Nov.15, 2019—”declaring November 8 of every year as the Environmental Planning Day of the Philippines.” (PNA)

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