ROBERT MAXIMILIAN SAND
Metro Manila is aware of the pitfalls of its rapid urbanization. This tension is reflected by exclusionary spatial patterns, urban congestion, poor public transportation and a noticeable lack of sanitation infrastructure. Extreme socio economic disparities as a direct outcome and high vulnerability to natural and anthropogenic risks are the characteristics of this urban development.
Valenzuela lacks open space and parks. Driven by an agenda which prioritises economic growth, the city replaced mangrove forests with fishponds which are now heavily contaminated and have severe effects on the environment. Concurrently the city is exposed to climate change causing the raining season to occur with more severe flooding while drought looms during dry season. Rivers overflow more frequently due to insufficient water shed management while water extraction causes land subsidence. These consequences are faced by marginalised groups of society.
Manila Delta Park is a tool to upgrade the existing water shed management by using long-term synergies that become an inclusive approach. The region as a whole is prone to natural hazards hence the design leaves the realm of a singular city and offers a decentralised grand scale scenario for the extended area of the capital and the involved stakeholders
The hydrological proposal creates a green buffer to bolster the urban fabric. Superfluous floodwater is lead into minor flood plains and channeling it into a wide delta plain. This natural flood detention basin is an eco-system-based adaptation to flooding. The park is to restore the native biodiversity while at the same time it allows for the recharge of aquifer systems. It is none the less to cater as the biggest urban open space for the citizens of Valenzuela.
Manila Delta Park is integrating risk management into the urban development planning and stresses the importance of zoning. Understanding this city as a currently economic-thriving and grey cluster, the proposed design will invigorate the blue, the green and the colourful spaces of Valenzuela