Road Right of Way Clearing Gains Ground in Southern Leyte

Thursday, May 26, 2016

About 212 structures have been removed from road sides along major thoroughfares in Southern Leyte as the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) steps up drive to recover the road right of way.

Of the 212 structures removed, 100 of these were along Junction Himayangan-Silago-Abuyog Boundary Road, 74 in Boundary Southern Leyte-Maasin-Macrohon-Sogod Daang Maharlika, 16 in Liloan-San Ricardo Road, eight in DaangMaharlika, seven in Bato-Bontoc Road, and six in Abuyog-Silago Road.

The newly-removed obstructions consists of172 makeshift structures and 40 concrete structures. As of May 2016, about 9,066 structures are targeted for demolition by DPWH Southern Leyte office. At least 1,057 of these structures are categorized as “doable” and 8,009 are long term.

As of May 23, at least 2,058 notices have been served to property owners, urging them to voluntarily demolish their own structures or else the government would take legal actions to clear national roads.

“We are heading orders from Secretary Rogelio Singson to strictly enforce the removal of obstructions and prohibited uses within the road right of way of national roads,” said District Engineer Ma. Margarita C. Junia.

So far, no single case has been filed at courts as property owners voluntarily remove encroachment after two or three notices, according to Junia.

Considered as obstructions within the right of way are all kinds of private and permanent structures such as buildings; houses; shanties; stores; shops; sheds; posts; canopies; billboards; signage; advertisements; fences; walls; railings; basketball courts; garbage receptacles.

Other common obstructions are plants and plant boxes; driveways and ramps occupying or protruding to the sidewalk; humps; construction materials (gravel, sand, cement, lumber, steel bars, waste materials, etc.); and vehicles and equipment that are junked, parked, and occupying or protruding to the sidewalk or shoulder.

Prohibited activities within the right of way include vending; repair of vehicles; disposal of household, commercial, industrial wastewater and sewage; raising of animals; washing and drying of clothes, crops, and other similar items; and sports and related activities.