Areza Estate delivers modern downtown in Lipa
Written by: Din M. Villafuerte
Pedestrian-friendly streets, mixed-use low-rises, a green streetscape and engaging architecture are just a few of the features that Lipeños can look forward to at Areza, Lipa City’s newest integrated estate by Ayala Land Inc. (ALI). But there is more beyond the surface.
The up-and-coming estate, at almost 100 hectares, is envisioned to be Lipa’s new downtown when it reaches completion. Its masterplan takes inspiration from the way old Spanish towns were planned, wherein the main components—which include a city hall, a church, market and residential spaces—surround the main plaza.
Areza will similarly have all these components—commercial establishments, shophouses, as well as retail and institutional components—filling this masterplanned community and turning it into a dynamic new downtown fit for Batangas’ first-class component city.
Since city halls are a vital part of any downtown because these are central to community building, among the first structures that were launched within the Areza estate is the new Lipa City Hall. ALI turned over 5 hectares of the estate to the city to be the site of the new administrative building.
The Lipa City Local Government Office commissioned renowned architectural firm Budji + Royal to spearhead the creation of the new city hall. Ar. Royal Pineda explained that the new Lipa City Hall is designed to “bring back the land to the people.”
Trees and gardens will surround the building while spaces are intended to be airy and benefit from natural light, making it pandemic-ready. The pedestrian-friendly area will also house an amphitheater at the center where people can gather for bigger events, as well as a performance hall.
To represent Lipa City’s 72 barangays, the new city hall will comprise 72 elevated blocks. Underneath these are pocket gardens and parks where people can walk and enjoy outdoors. The lobbies will be grand but not enclosed and the hallways will be comfortable and spacious.
Another valuable addition at Areza is the Lipa Trading Center. Spanning 1.6 ha, this will serve as the regional food terminal or “bagsakan” of local produce and various other food products.
The Lipa Trading Center is seen to streamline the regional food distribution network that would eventually result in lower costs, high profits and better products. Set to benefit from it are farmers from Lipa and the rest of Calabarzon Region as well as traders, wholesalers and retailers, institutional buyers such as restaurants, hotels and resorts, and at least 21 organized farmers’ groups.
The regional food hub is expected to spur trade and commerce as well as create businesses and job opportunities for the people of Lipa and its neighboring towns. It is set to be fully operational by 2024 while the new Lipa City Hall is targeted for completion by 2025.
Areza will also accommodate a 1.4-hectare fresh market. Here, shoppers will find a modern, clean and organized wet and dry market offering affordably priced products.
The estate’s commercial business district, meanwhile, will offer multi-purpose lots for offices, retail spaces and commercial and institutional establishments. This area is seen to further boost Lipa’s economic growth by attracting new developments to the city.
Beyond establishing their presence in various metro centers, Ayala Land’s objective has always been to shape self-sustaining neighborhoods which guarantee progress not only to its stockholders but more to its stakeholders. Its aptitude for integrating residences, offices, commercial centers and even industrial hubs into one masterplanned development has created thriving growth centers from which the public is able to benefit from.
Through Areza, ALI brings to Lipa its expertise in creating vibrant and future-proof communities. The industry leader takes its vision to reality as it continues to enrich the quality of lives of more Filipinos and become a strong partner in nation-building by developing sustainable estates.
Soon, the City of Lipa will take pride in its own integrated community that is set to become among the most dynamic, modern and progressive economic centers in South Luzon.
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