Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) has approved the business plan for the third stage of San Miguel Corporation’s (SMC) P24-billion Bulacan Bulk Water Supply Project (BBWSP).
According to a statement, the MWSS Board of Trustees already approved the Updated Business Plan (UBP) that the Luzon Clean Water Development Corporation (LCWDC), the third concessionaire of the MWSS covering the whole Province of Bulacan, submitted this year.
The approval of the UBP will allow LCWDC to commence the design and engineering stage of the third stage of BBSP, which is one of the region’s long-term water security projects identified by the MWSS and is meant to provide treated bulk water to 24 water service providers in Bulacan province. LCWDC is a consortium of San Miguel Corp. and K-Water Resources Corp.
Prior to the approval of the UBP, MWSS Chairman and OIC Administrator Reynaldo Velasco established a UBP Review Committee (URC) to ensure that LCWDC’s future direction and priorities are in line with the BBWSP Concession Agreement (CA) and that its strategies benefit Bulacan as a whole.
The URC looked at the investments for new assets to be developed, cash requirements to meet operational investments, and cost-cutting strategies for the entire project life-cycle.
The MWSS Board, on the other hand, was concerned with the improvement of quality of life, the assurance of continued water supply even during calamities, and environmental protection, given that the groundwater resources in the service area have already been depleted.
The MWSS Board’s approval of the UBP signals that the water districts will continue to pay low tariffs, resulting in low end-user fees for the Bulakenyos.
Meanwhile, the UBP covers the technical, financial, and operational aspects of BBWSP Stage 3, including the construction of extension lines to be connected from the existing Stage 1 and 2 systems as well as the construction of pumping station to provide supply to Pandi and Hagonoy, as well as augmentation of the supply to Sta Maria (Stage 2) and Bocaue (Stage 1) Water districts.
The plan also covers the construction of a Norzagaray Modular Water Treatment Plant inside the MWSS Bigte Compound with pipeline connection to existing waterline to supply the beneficiary barangays of the Municipality of Norzagaray. The treatment plant will have a capacity of 10 million liters of water per day (MLD).
At the same time, as part of the Stage 3 of BBWSP, LCWDC will also consutruc an initial 50 MLD water treatment plant, expandable to 100MLD, at San Rafael, Bulacan, that will abstract raw water downstream of Bustos Dam, as well as pumping station and around 34 km of primary pipelines ranging from 500mm to 1100mm diameter.
Since 2019, the water districts covered by BBWSP Stage 1 and 2 – namely San Jose Del Monte, Marilao, Bocaue, Meycauayan, Obando, Balagtas, Santa Maria, Malolos, Bulakan, Calumpit, Guiguinto Plaridel, plus the Paombong Municipality – have been enjoying the lowest bulk water charge in the country.
By Madelaine B. Miraflor
Published September 14, 2021, 5:03 PM