Malaybalay in 2011-2020: Portrait of the growing “city within a forest”

MALAYBALAY CITY – (Bukidnon News Dispatch/08 Sept.) Two of Malaybalay’s five urbanizing barangays in 2000 will now be considered “urban areas,” according to the draft of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) of the city for 2011 to 2020. But one barangay identified as “urbanizing” 10 years ago, will be categorized again as a “rural barangay,” according to the list obtained by Bukidnon News from the City Planning and Development Office this week.

According to the list of the proposed new roles of the city’s 46 barangays, barangays Sumpong and Casisang are now considered “urban barangays.”While the city is urbanizing, 29 of its 46 barangays are still considered rural and will remain as such in the proposed revision of the land use plan.

Of the 29, 18 barangays have been identified as areas where agriculture can co-exist with forest protection, buffer zone or watershed areas. In the 2000 to 2010 land use plan, there were 26 barangays considered to be “agricultural.”

The 11 poblacion barangays, in the current CLUP, are classified as “commercial, recreational, institutional, and residential” areas. In the proposed CLUP for the next 10 years, the poblacion barangays will also become “business district” and “urban center.” Barangays 1 and 9 will also be considered as “ecotourism areas.”

Barangays Aglayan, Bangcud, and Managok will be joined by Brgy. San Jose in the group of four “urbanizing barangays.”

At present, Aglayan, at the crossing of roads leading to Lantapan and Cabanglasan towns along the proposed Iligan to Butuan East-West Lateral highway, is considered a “residential, institutional, and commercial transportation hub”. It is also presently an “agri-industrial” area.  The barangay is the site of the city’s biggest grains centers. The city government is eyeing to make Aglayan an “agri-industrial center” in the next 10 years.

Managok, in the city’s rice farming Basakan area, presently residential, institutional, tourism, and agric-industrial in the city’s zoning descriptions, will become an “agri eco-tourism” and “grains center.”

Bangcud, where the present classification is “residential, institutional, and tourism,” the list of proposed new roles said it will also be the “institutional research center.”  Bangcud is the site of the DA’s Regional Crop Protection Center and the Summer Institute of Linguistics.

Brgy. San Jose, home of the famous Benedictine Monastery of Transfiguration, which is presently classified as a “residential, tourism, commercial, industrial, and institutional area” is eyed as a “major commercial hub.”

Brgy. Kalasungay, which has been classified as an “urbanizing barangays” in 2000 CLUP, is proposed to be reverted as a “rural barangay.” It is presently a residential, cultural, agri-industrial, and institutional area. In the next 10 years it is eyed as a residential haven and agri-forestry center.

Two barangays, Caburacanan in the city’s Upper Pulangi area and Kibalabag, where Malaybalay City sources its potable water through city hall’s water system, are the only two barangays eyed to be exclusively for “watershed” purposes in the proposed CLUP.

Caburacanan’s present classification is “agricultural.”

In the 2000 land use plan, there were 12 barangays identified to be agro-industrial or areas where agricultural plantations thrive. In the proposed revision, only seven are classified as “agri-industrial” with four barangays, namely Aglayan, Cabangahan, Magsaysay, and Patpat, classified as “agri-industrial” only.

The city appears to be poised for its greening efforts, too. From nine barangays identified in the last decade for watershed/buffer zone/ forest protection, the new CLUP is proposed to have 21 barangays classified for the same category.

Also, the proposed revision envisions Malaybalay as a more active tourism player with nine barangays being projected as tourism, eco-tourism or agri tourism destinations. In 2000, there were only four villages eyed for tourist destinations.

Two barangays, Dalwangan and Kalasungay were classified as “cultural areas” in 2000. But none were considered “cultural” in the proposed revision.

Engr. Jorge Cabañelez, the city’s zoning administrator-designate, told Bukidnon News, the “future role” identified in the proposed revision is not meant to alter the present role.

“It is an addition to the existing classification,” he added.

He clarified that the zoning classifications were based on the zoning clearances they issued in the past 10 years and the level of economic activity in the barangay.

Cabañelez said they expect to complete the revision of the city’s land use plan before the end of the year. They will propose the revisions to the city’s zoning ordinance by October, he said. (Walter I. Balane)

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