House Bill (HB) 8829, which aims to safeguard the national monuments, landmarks, and shrines from any physical obstruction, has passed its second reading at the House of Representatives.
The bill’s approval followed criticism over the construction of the Torre de Manila by developer DMCI Homes, from groups such as the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the National Parks Development Committee, Knights of Rizal, as well as concerned citizens.
The issue with the condominium building began back in 2012 when its construction drew flak from heritage groups as well as advocate, the late Carlos Celdran.
It was said to ruin the view of the Rizal Monument along Roxas Boulevard, by “photobombing” from the background.
In June of 2015, the Supreme Court (SC) issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) for the building’s construction. This would be lifted however, at a later date.
Albay Representative Edcel Lagman authored HB 8829 and said that it aims to amend Republic Act (RA) 10066 also known as the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, in order to prevent future construction projects that may “ruin the view and sightline of any national shrine, monument, landmark and other historic edifices and structures”.
Local government units will also be required to pass ordinances that protect all cultural property within their areas of responsibility.
Photo: The Manila Times