HSAC orders BF Parañaque gates opened to public; homeowners push back

Anna Cerezo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 07 2022 08:19 AM | Updated as of Aug 07 2022 09:04 AM

MANILA - BF Homes Subdivision in Parañaque has been ordered by the Human Settlements Adjudication Commission (HSAC) to ease its stringent security measures.

In an HSAC ruling dated July 29, BF Federation of Homeowners’ Associations Inc. (BFFHAI) was instructed to open five of their gates to all motorists and to stop collecting sticker fees as well as entry fees for delivery service providers.

According to the Writ of Preliminary Injunction, vehicles must be given “unobstructed passage” through the subdivision’s gates along Aguirre Avenue, Elizalde Street, El Grande Avenue, Concha Cruz Street, and Tropical Street.

Prior to the HSAC ruling, Elizalde gate was exclusive to residents while Concha Cruz entry was reserved for those with BFFHAI and Friendship stickers. The other gates required visitors to leave their identification cards upon entry.

The HSAC, which was reconstituted from the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) by virtue of Republic Act No. 11201, is a quasi-judicial agency mandated to adjudicate disputes relating to real estate development, homeowners associations, and appeals from decisions of local and regional planning and zoning bodies.

HOMEOWNERS PUSH BACK

Although the order may be welcomed by motorists who can now use the former gated community to cut their drive short from Paranaque to Las Pinas or Muntinlupa City, as well as visitors who frequent the area’s bustling string of restaurants and bars, some residents slammed the decision. 

Tarpaulins have been scattered in the area rejecting the ruling and invoking their right to “regulate access to the main roads” of the subdivision through BFFHAI.

Several homeowners argued the now more relaxed security may compromise their safety and privacy. 

Bea Bravo, a resident of BF Homes, shared that she noticed security guards were no longer stationed at the aforementioned gates. 

“I don’t feel safe in our neighborhood anymore as anyone can easily go in and out of the village. Leaving IDs somehow deter crimes like riding in tandem. But now, that it’s free for all. I feel mas magiging rampant ang incidents of crime,” she said. 

“May pamilyang nagbabayad ng mortgage sa BF Homes because of the security tapos biglang gano'n,” Yag Santiago, another resident, said.

A possible traffic build-up also concerns some residents with the public's access to the subdivision.

BFFHAI said it has filed an appeal at the Court of Appeals.