Parañaque’s livability and business ratings soar

From the Paranaque Public Information Office:

Not only has Parañaque redeemed its old glory, it continues to make a name as a livable city and an investors’ haven.

In the past, particularly from 1995 through 2004, under the administration of the mayor at that time, actor-comedian Joey Marquez, this locale used to be known as a neglected city with garbage-strewn streets and sluggish economy.

This was when an infamous anecdote circulated in the whole country and abroad putting Parañaque in a bad light: Q: “How do you know if you are already in Parañaque?”. A: “When the stench of trash reaches your nostrils, otherwise when you see a 3-storey high mountain of garbage in an open dumpsite and uncollected trash on the streets.”

In recent years, however under a kind and caring city administration of Mayor Florencio Bernabe, Jr., Parañaque City rose to prominence. Today it has gained renown as a clean, healthy, peaceful and progressive community that is, as its seal of office proclaim, Dedicated to God.

Promptly attending to the needs of his constituents particularly the more serious lack and responding to the challenges of the rapid urbanization that it taking place, the local chief executive built schools, day care centers, health centers and other essential facilities in barangays where there used to have none.

Collaborating with the Maynilad Water Services and neighboring LGUs, a steady supply of clean potable water now flows to the BF Homes Subdivision, the country’s biggest subdivision which had been waterless for more than 25 years as in other parts of the city.

In the area of socialized housing, Parañaque has established 30 Gawad Kalinga villages which is the second best record in the National Capital Region.

Parañaque now has less fires and a low crime rate, owing to the diligence and dedication to duty by the Bureau of Fire Protection and the Philippine National Police, values which are enhanced by Parañaque City Government’s support to these protective services in form of fire trucks and protective safety equipment; transceivers; police patrol cars and motorcycles; arms and ammunition; and monitoring and surveillance equipment including closed circuit television (CCTV).

In 2008, the city government received the Award for Healthy City with Good Dynamics and Award for Creative Development in Healthy Cities from the Alliance for Healthy Cities and the World Health Organization. In 2009 it was honored with the Galing Pook Award for its innovative Adult-Friendly Reproductive Health Services. This year, it was declared Urban Health Champion by the World Health Organization and the Department of Health.

Adopting business-friendly policies, including the implementation of City Ordinance No. 014 series of 2007, declaring the Parañaque-part of the bay reclamation area as a Special Investment District and offering tax holidays and incentives, he won the confidence of the business sector and in the process ignited business activity.

In 2007, Parañaque hit the limelight along with other LGUs as it ranked sixth in the list of “Top Metro Cities” in the PCCRP-AIM (Philippine Cities Competitiveness Ranking Project-Asian Institute of Management). Observers were quick to note that even as a neophyte, Parañaque fared well with long-time LGU participants. In the same study, Parañaque was ranked 1st in the roster of “emerging cities” and was fondly referred to as a “Most Promising City”.

Large-scale development is now unfolding at Parañaque’s new frontier by the bay promising great business prospects and more than 250,000 jobs for the city’s residents. It will contain hotels, international schools, theme parks, offices, shopping malls, golfing greens, an “entertainment city” seaside homes and other mixed uses.

“The people of Parañaque, together with the whole nation stood witness to the unsurpassed progress and development our city has achieved in such a short span of only six years. What used to be a dream is now a reality.”, Mayor Bernabe said. (Public Information Office)

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