(UPDATE) Malls open carparks to stranded motorists

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 27 2009 02:29 AM | Updated as of Sep 27 2009 04:17 PM

MANILA - Mall owners on Sunday heeded the call of President Arroyo to give free overnight parking to motorists stranded by floods in Metro Manila.

Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro said at least 17 malls have offered free overnight parking to motorists. He said policemen will bet at the malls' carparks to help motorists in parking and securing their vehicles.

He said the malls that will offer free overnight parking are:

Gotesco Mall Monumento
Robinson's Mall Monumento
Caloocan North Mall Monumento
SM Valenzuela
Pure Gold Valenzuela
VM Fairview
Robinson's Quezon City
Trinoma Mall
SM North EDSA
Cubao Araneta Center
SM Mall of Asia
Galleria Mall
SM Manila
Star Mall
SM Mega Mall
SM Podium
St. Francis Square

Mall chain SM Supermalls earlier said it will open its doors to customers who could not leave their establishments due to heay rains and floods brought by tropical storm Ondoy (international codename Ketsana).

Annie S. Garcia, president of SM Supermalls, said customers who could not leave SM malls due to lack of transportation or floods may stay at the malls till morning.

"Our malls are still ready to give [our customers] comfort and use of the facilities. This is an important day to help in public service," she said in a radio dzMM interview.

Garcia said the management of SM Mall of Asia gave donuts and coffee to customers who remain stranded in the mall as of posting time.

A statement texted by SM Malls Marketing Communications vice-president Millie Dizon said there were several hundred employees and customers stranded in the mall.

She said the management of SM Marikina is coordinating with Marikina Mayor Maria Lourdes Fernando and the Philippine Navy to bring stranded cars and evacuees to the mall.

Garcia said SM Supermalls is heeding the request of Mrs. Arroyo to open their carparks to stranded vehicles. She said the malls are willing to waive overnight charges for affected vehicles.