Pampanga will light up with kaleidoscopic lanterns and vibrant traditions for this Yuletide season.
We can surely count on a province that beats with heritage, artisanship and dynamism. The locals refuse to be doused by tragedy—not by the worst volcanic eruption nearly three decades ago, and certainly not by today’s economic plunge.
Pampanga’s own history attests to its resilience and potential. The province rose to become a center of culture and economy, also relying on its natural and manmade assets to reel in tourism. A young, industrious and enterprising population promises a steady ascent. Among the provinces in the Philippines, Pampanga consistently posts some of the highest numbers in gross domestic product and average annual family income, among others.
All these indicators emboldened Ayala Land Inc. and Leonio Land to partner in transforming a 1,800-ha land into the integrated mixed-use development Alviera. As if an ode to Pampanga’s hardiness, this takes shape in Porac, a town once devastated by the Pinatubo lahar flow in 1991.
Launched in 2014, the urban development is complete with spaces for residence, retail, industry, learning, nature and recreation, like a mini Pampanga. Nature tempers the project, with 40 percent of the area preserved for forest and nature trails. The estate is subdivided into four districts: City Center, Greenbelt, East and West.
City Center is the central business and lifestyle district housing corporate offices, retail and commercial spaces, and residential developments such as Ayala Land Premier, Alveo and Avida. The 300-ha Greenbelt cuts across Alviera. Its main draw is the La Salle Botanical Gardens, which features themed patches, greenhouses, libraries.
East District will include a commercial hub, residential communities, educational institutions such as Holy Angel University, and eco-industrial parks. Taking advantage of the rolling terrain, high elevation and lush greenery, the West District will focus on the leisure and tourism components. It will host themed hotels, wellness centers, recreational developments, retail spaces and residences with awesome vistas.
Far larger than the 950-ha Makati central business district and 24-ha Bonifacio Global City, Alviera will transform into a thriving epicenter with 20,000 office and industrial workers, 65,000 residents, 20,000 students and 500,000 visitors upon the development’s full completion. That secures a huge footfall for existing and future locators.
Conducive business environment
With some 430 ha allotted for commercial lots, the estate offers adequate spaces and a conducive business environment to begin an entrepreneurial pursuit or expand the business, especially for those raring to cover the northern part of Luzon.
The East District has two 32-ha industrial parks that can cater to Peza and non-Peza light-to-medium industries. These include food manufacturing, assembly, packaging, logistics and warehousing. Monde Nissin and Badan Building Materials Corp. are now operating. East Commercial is the estate’s first commercial hub. With 20 generously sized lots, the 7-ha development is fast selling out. The few remaining lots are listed at P129 million to P226 million.
More opportunities to set up shop will open up soon. Commercial properties will cover 23 percent of the estate in the next six years. Alviera has a bullish forecast of 14-percent compound annual growth rate over three years, comparable to that of the Makati central business district.
Already in 57 growth centers with its 29 estates, Ayala Land isn’t making a wild guess. In its joint venture with Leonio Land, it finds great potential for business in the location. The North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX) and Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) link it well with the north and south.
Only 1.5 hours from Metro Manila, Alviera is considered a strong alternative—even one that is more livable, sustainable and resilient. It is also under an hour away from the cities of Angeles and San Fernando, Clark International Airport and Subic Freeport Zone. More projects are poised to further boost its accessibility.
Along with the rest of Central Luzon, Pampanga is speedily bouncing back from the pandemic. In an online forum on Oct 29, National Economic and Development Authority OIC-Regional Director Agustin Mendoza noted signs of recovery. Employment rose from 72.7 percent in the first quarter to 89.7 percent in July. Consequently, regional unemployment decreased to 10.9 percent in September from 27 percent in April. Economic activity is also picking up.
Once again showing resiliency and potential, Pampanga can be a takeoff point for entrepreneurs who want to be more. Alviera sets them up for guaranteed success, history attests.
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