KORONADAL CITY – The city government is gearing up for the development starting next year of three major commercial property projects here by the private sector.
City Mayor Eliordo Ogena said on Thursday the preparations have continued to gain ground for the construction of the planned branches here of the SM and Robinsons malls, and membership shopping S&R.
He said SM is currently finalizing their land acquisition while Robinsons has already started the initial site development and will likely start the actual construction phase in the coming months.
The mayor said S&R representatives visited early this week their newly acquired site in preparation for the project’s implementation.
“We are optimistic that these developments will go full swing by next year,” he said in a briefing.
Ogena said the Robinsons Land Corporation, the owner and operator of the nationwide chain of Robinsons Malls, initially planned to start the construction of the mall complex last year but was slowed down by the onset of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
The planned three-story shopping mall, which would be the company’s eighth in Mindanao, will be constructed in an 8.3-hectare property in Barangay Zone 2.
The site development area covers 3.8 hectares while 1.67 hectares were allotted for future expansion. The total construction floor area covers 99,862.31 square meters or nearly 10 hectares.
For the SM mall, Ogena said the city government has helped settle a previous conflict between the owners and tenants of the 16-hectare site along the national highway in Barangay Sto. Niño.
The property, which comprises two lots, is situated near the city hall complex and several other emerging commercial areas.
He said they already drafted a compromise agreement among the involved parties, specifically SM, the land tenants, and the brokers.
Once realized, Ogena said they expect the upcoming projects to bring in more opportunities for the people, especially in terms of jobs.
He said the local government may negotiate with the involved companies to prioritize local residents for their human complement and also allot other slots for those from the nearby localities.
Ogena said these developments complement the growth projections of the city, which is a component and the capital city of South Cotabato province, and the regional seat and center of Region 12 (Soocsksargen).
The city already has three shopping malls -- the homegrown KCC and Mall of Ace Centerpoint, and a Gaisano branch.
“This city is a small city that is fast growing…a small city with a big dream. We are continually trying to put in place the necessary infrastructure to ensure that our growth will become faster,” he said. (PNA)