LGUs in the Philippines

Roxas City residents urge mayor to expand probe on river promenade collapse

Inday Espina-Varona
Roxas City residents urge mayor to expand probe on river promenade collapse

RIVER PROMENADE COLLAPSE. This newly-constructed portion of Roxas City's River Promenade Phase 3 collapsed in the early hours of November 12.

Rexam Laguda

The first phases of Roxas City's Paseo del Rio opened only last February 2022 and phase 3, the collapsed portion, still has areas under construction

Roxas City’s probe on the collapse of a portion of the Paseo del Rio on Saturday, November 12, will focus on weather-proofing the new river promenade, aside from reviewing the structural weaknesses of Phase 3 of the city’s riverside promenade.

But the collapse of a 200-meter stretch of it has also resulted in residents urging Mayor Ronnie Dadivas to include Phases 1 and 2 in the investigation to preempt any other incidents.

Roxas City residents urge mayor to expand probe on river promenade collapse

Dadivas on November 13 said the city engineer’s office has started investigating the collapse, which happened past midnight. He also said an independent committee will check on the safety and structural integrity of the promenade’s Phase 3 project before any future turnover.

The city government has only paid the contractor, local firm MBM Construction, P4.34 million of the total contract price of P14.1 million, or 30.78%, according to Dadivas.

No official gave a deadline for the probe.

VIEW FROM THE TOP. Roxas City Mayor Ronnie Dadivas shows a top view of part of the collapsed portion of the Riverside Promenade Phase 3 project. (Ronnie Dadivas)

A source from the city engineer’s office, who asked not to be named as he was not authorized to speak, said the probe would also see if the promenade construction blueprint included safeguards against the frequent floods experienced yearly by Capiz province’s capital.

“We will be checking the foundations, the pilings, the pipes, and connections to existing river structures,” said the engineer in a telephone interview. “We’ll need to ensure this is weather-proof because it will be used daily by residents,” he added in a mix of Filipino and English.

FOCUS ON FOUNDATION. The probe of the collapse of part of Roxas City’s river promenade will focus on the structure’s foundation, according to the city engineering department. (Rexam Laguda)

The collapse also damaged the river control and part of the Barangay 6 drainage outfall, the source added.

“If a new storm or heavy rains come, that could give us big problems,” he said.

Several local engineers weighed in on social media conversations about the collapse.

“When we’re talking river development, you need very solid foundations, solid steel pilings,” one engineer said “You can’t just pile on, or just add to existing structures because when storms, especially with high tide, could wash that out.”

COLLAPSE. Another portion of Phase 3 of Roxas City’s River Promenade project that collapsed on November 12. (Rexam Laguda)

Capiz province, including Roxas City, suffered the most floods in Western Visayas when Severe Tropical Storm Paeng hit just before the Undas holidays. Even before the region received wind signals, days of heavy rains had already flooded many areas.

On October 29,  Dadivas showed photos of how an overflowing Panay River made major roads impassable.

Popular spot

Many residents who commented during Bombo Radyo Roxas City’s series of broadcasts on the incident questioned why a relatively new structure collapsed.

They also called on the mayor to check the bustling first phases, which host regular activities near Casa de Mercado, the refurbished city market.

Dadivas, now on his second term of office, announced the Paseo del Rio project in November 2020. He opened the first phases of the 711-2-meter promenade along the Panay River, on February 11, 2022.

In September, Dadivas showed photos of his inspection of the project, saying he was excited to have it completed soon.

INSPECTION. Roxas City Mayor Ronnie Dadivas checks construction of Phase 3 of the Paseo del Rio or River Promenade project in September. Courtesy of Roxas City government

The promenade, built on a former dumpsite on the banks of the river, begins at San Roque Bridge (TATC) towards Altavas Street towards the portion of Washington Street until Juliano Alba Bridge (Jumbo) and Premier de Mayo Street.

“Ang sadto tambakan sang basura, mahigku kag mabaho nga lugar guinhimo naton nga atraksyon nga magahatag opurtunidad kag pangabuy-anan sa magagmay nga negosyante,” said  Dadivas during the February opening. (We have turned this former dumpsite, dirty and foul-smelling, into an attraction that provides livelihood opportunities for small entrepreneurs.) – Rappler.com

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.