Preserving landscapes and open spaces seen as key to 'Green Cities'- experts

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 20 2018 06:18 PM

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MANILA - As Metro Manila experiences a building boom, concerns are being raised about the effects of the disappearance of open spaces and green spots. 

Experts warn that eliminating green parks and open spaces results in what is known as an urban island heat effect, which makes urban areas uncomfortably warm. 

"It brings discomfort not only for the people walking in the streets but also for the people in buildings," said Architect Amado de Jesus, vice chairman of Philippine Green Building Initiative. 

The lack of open spaces also diminishes the quality of life for residents of urban areas

"It's been proven that proximity to parks lessens stress levels for citizens and workers," said urban planner Paulo Alcazaren of PGAA Creative Design. 

To help keep cities green and sustainable, the International Finance Corporation, a sister organization of the World Bank, partnered with the Department of Public Works and Highways to develop the Philippine Green Building Code. 

"If we can adapt the right green building standards, we can lock in energy and water savings for the future generation with very minimum upfront cost," said Yuan Xu IFC country manager for the Philippines. 

Experts say applying the green building code is key to making better and more livable cities.