Urban Flood Disaster Risk Areas of Cagayan de Oro, Philippines: A look into its implication to the city's built areas

Urban Flood Disaster Risk Areas of Cagayan de Oro, Philippines: A look into its implication to the city's built areas

Noel Cornel Alegre

In December 2011 typhoon Sendong (Washi), one of the last depressions that visited the Philippines in that year, caused unexpected flush floods in the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. For both cities these floods were the most devastating since the hard hit areas are the communities along the major tributaries.
 In Cagayan de Oro, many realizations surfaced after the flood. One of these realizations is the fact that Mindanao, especially Cagayan de Oro, is no longer free from the effects of devastating typhoons. For so many years, Kagay-anons and most of the people from Mindanao took pride of being located in a typhoon free area of the country. Because of this idea, "disaster risk management" is not embedded in the previous City Land Use and Development Plans (CLUP).
The disaster brought by Sendong was an eyeopenner for the City and Provincial planners. After the flood the Provincial Board of the province of Misamis Oriental called for the town and city Mayors for a review and necessary revisions in their respective CLUP and zoning ordinances. Cagayan de Oro responded on the call by mandating the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) to spearhead in the review of the CLUP. By the month of March until May 2012, the review was facilitated by the regional office of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA 10). Since Cagayan de Oro City has not submitted its long overdue development plan to the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB), the activity was a chance for the reformulation of the CLUP. This time, the plan has the slant on "disaster risk management".
This study initially presents the perspectives of the CLUP prior and after Sendong. It will also presents the planned flood disaster risk areas in Cagayan de Oro as mapped by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and its implication to the present build areas of the City. Further, from the informations gathered, a recommendation will be forged for a workable risk reduction mitigation in case the same catastrophe recurs.

Noel Cornel Alegre
Assoc. Prof. at CINREX-Capitol University
Capitol Institute for Research & Extension (CINREX)
Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines