CLARK, Pampanga — AlloyMTD Philippines, the contractor of the 9,450-hectare New Clark City, is expected to complete the 40-hectare sports complex by Aug. 31, ahead of the government’s target of Oct. 15.
“We are on track of meeting the actual deadline set by the government of finishing it by Oct. 15. And we are actually eyeing to meet our self-imposed deadline of Aug. 31, or within the next 73 days,” AlloyMTD President Patrick Nicholas P. David told reporters on Wednesday.
“We just want to be ahead of the curve,” he said, noting that work on the project began on March 15, 2018.
To recall, Malaysian firm MTD Capital Berhad won the bid to develop a 220-hectare National Government Administrative Center (NGAC) in New Clark City. AlloyMTD is the Philippine unit of MTD Capital.
Phase 1 of the project involves the construction of the sports complex — the venue of the Southeast Asian Games, which will run from Nov. 30 until Dec. 11, 2019. It will have an open field stadium with 20,000 seats, an aquatic center with 2,000 seats, and an athletes’ village.
According to Mr. David, they have 8,000 workers assigned to the project. Construction is on-going seven days a week.
Meanwhile, Mr. David noted some countries have approached the company to inquire if their athletes can train at the sports complex, in preparation for the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.
“We were also approached by some countries to train their athletes here before heading to Tokyo for the Olympics,” he said, without identifying the countries.
Parts of the complex will be opened to the public, while majority of the facilities will be available by reservations, Mr. David said.
There are five phases of development for the NGAC project, which was patterned after Putrajaya in Malaysia, and Sejong City in South Korea. The government is planning to transfer some department offices and agencies to Clark, in an effort to decongest Metro Manila.
“The government offices in Manila are scattered all over the city, and for the public, it’s very difficult for them if they have to deal with several ministries, to go from one place to another…You know I think, we own the land, it is available, it will be accessible through rail, train, highways, so I think it really makes sense to consider moving here. In fact Indonesia is going to move their capital outside of Jakarta,” Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said.
As an example, Mr. Dominguez said the Department of Agriculture (DA), located in Quezon City, is not very accessible for farmers.
“For instance, why should the DA be in Metro Manila? How many farmers can they actually access there? Not a lot, di ba? That’s just one example,” he said. — Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio