Ayala Land: True trailblazer in sustainable estates
It takes more than just a few features for an estate to be called sustainable.
While sustainability is commonly associated with preserving the environment, recycling, and going green, the practice seeks to provide solutions that meet the needs of society, and the economy, while reducing impacts on the environment in the long run.
This is why only a few companies can rightfully lay claim to being truly sustainable.
Property giant Ayala Land has always strived to be a step ahead in the sustainability movement. It’s a pioneering force that has fully understood that sustainability is an all-inclusive undertaking requiring a different kind of commitment, mindset, innovation, and even passion.
Ayala Land, after all, has long started that thrust when it began building estates—mixed-use communities that afforded residents, workers, and businesses the convenience of being near essential establishments, and the ease of accessibility to reach other destinations. These estates not only promote efficient land use but also encourage end-users to walk more, take their bikes, or commute, helping minimize pollution and conserve the environment. More importantly, an estate is able to generate quality jobs, enhance the lives of the residents, and become a true catalyst for growth.
Thus, since Ayala Land began its sustainability reporting in 2008 and had set its aggressive campaign to cut its carbon footprint in 2017, it has already set the gold standard in creating sustainable estates.
Today, sustainability remains well-ingrained in Ayala Land’s DNA—an intrinsic aspect in every business operation, every plan, and every blueprint. More than just an authority in sustainability, it has become the embodiment of healthy and inclusive developments, showing what it means to build truly sustainable estates the Ayala Land way.
MASTERPLANNED, INTEGRATED COMMUNITIES
Designed for convenience, the masterplanned mixed-use communities of Ayala Land ensure that residences, offices, retail spaces, schools, hospitals, and leisure hubs are all easily accessible within a self-sustaining neighborhood. Having all these components in a single setting affords residents and guests numerous opportunities for growth as well as prospects for their businesses.
Vermosa, a 725-hectare central business and residential district that straddles the cities of Imus and Dasmarinas in Cavite boasts a complete package of residences, malls, offices, institutions, schools, entertainment venues, government centers, BPOs and a world-class training and lifestyle destination for athletes and fitness enthusiasts. The development is envisioned to be the leading growth center in the South and continues to spur growth in the Daang Hari corridor.
Accessibility is an integral component in Ayala Land’s masterplanning, ensuring that its developments are all strategically located near major thoroughfares and key infrastructure projects.
The Junction Place in Quezon City, for instance, is ALI’s newest pocket urban development in Novaliches and serves as a link between 2 major thoroughfares—Quirino Highway and Tandang Sora. This 11-hectare neighborhood is also set to provide a great platform for homegrown small and medium enterprises with its urban location.
In the Visayas, South Coast City is a 26-hectare development in South Road Properties at the gateway of the new Cebu-Cordova bridge and is along the South Coastal Road. This prime waterside commercial zone, set to become Cebu’s premier business address, will provide a valuable platform for firms to thrive with large scale facilities for entertainment and convergence like the arena, convention center and parks.
Connectivity is another key tenet in Ayala Land’s strategy. Having public transport hubs, sidewalks, crosswalks, underpasses, and bike lanes encourages residents and guests to walk or take their bikes; minimizes disturbance; and cuts the carbon footprint of the community with fewer cars plying the road.
For instance, the Makati CBD, through One Ayala, offers a three-floor, 20,000-sqm transportation hub that serves as a terminal for north- and south-bound buses, AUVs, the future Bus Rapid Transit, and jeepneys. It also offers direct connection to the MRT. What makes it further distinct are the covered, well-maintained elevated walkways that allow commuters to safely and easily get to their respective rides, and pedestrians to reach nearby destinations like McKinley Exchange, Glorietta, and the rest of the CBD.
MULTIPLE UTILITY PROVIDERS
It’s unsurprising that Ayala Land’s estates and office buildings are preferred addresses of multinational companies, top corporations and business process outsourcing (BPO) firms, whose primary considerations are often location, connectivity and reliability of utilities including power, water and internet. That’s because a standard in Ayala Land estates is to offer multiple telecom networks while its buildings are equipped with backup power supply and water tanks to ensure uninterrupted operations.
GREEN, OPEN SPACES
Ayala Land has made it a point to integrate parks and open spaces in all its projects as these serve multiple purposes. In some locales, open spaces serve to foster native and endemic plant species. In in-city developments, pocket gardens offer a much-needed breathing room, fresh air, and recreational spaces where residents can safely converge. Overall, open spaces help improve the air quality as well as the health and well-being of residents.
Case in point is the upcoming 35-hectare Parklinks, poised to become the greenest urban estate in the metro. A whopping 50 percent of this expanse will be developed into open spaces that include a 3-ha central park, an esplanade, river park terraces, running and bike trails and riparian gardens. It will also have zones with gardens, waterfront entertainment, as well as an outdoor amphitheater.
At the onset, Ayala Land builds with the future in mind, ensuring that it designs with respect to nature. For example, taking stock of the country’s vulnerability to typhoons and flooding, all Ayala Land developments are integrated with storm water management and retention systems.
Nuvali—a vibrant 2,290-hectare eco-city in Sta. Rosa, Laguna—has a multi-functional lake that serves as a catchment for stormwater run-off, a water reservoir and rainwater catchment basin, as a fire reserve, and as a medium for alternative transportation in the estate. On other days, it also serves as a leisure spot for guests in the area.
SAFETY AND ESTATE MANAGEMENT
Good governance, ample security measures and estate management have long been key components in every Ayala Land masterplan. This is the reason why its estates and urban developments remained thriving centers where businesses continue to flourish and land values appreciate. At the same time, these communities offer safe, secure and conducive space to raise families.
A cursory look at the established districts of Ayala Land will reveal how it’s able to maintain, safeguard and enhance its estates to cater to the changing needs of end-users. It also ensures the presence of trained security and emergency response personnel within estates.
PRIMING LOCALES AND COMMUNITY EVENTS
Social sustainability is another important aspect. It’s vital to have spaces for community engagements and activities as these help foster a sense of place, cohesion, and belongingness.
This is why Ayala Land continues to pour in a lot of resources and efforts to prime its estates and boost community relations. It invests in multipurpose open spaces and amenities such as clubhouses, swimming pools. It regularly hosts placemaking events and activities to keep the community engaged.
Take for example the 1,800-hectare Alviera in Porac, Pampanga, which features Sandbox—a sprawling adventure destination that offers fun attractions and exciting outdoor activities for the entire family.
LOCAL JOB GENERATION
In every location, Ayala Land has always been known to spur economic activity and fuel progress. That’s because in building complete, fully integrated communities, Ayala Land generates opportunities for employment and enterprise. Constructing the estate alone demands workers onsite, while the presence of multinationals and local firms, retail and dining establishments can create jobs that will enhance the quality of lives of residents. For entrepreneurs, the high foot traffic in estates will offer a platform for businesses to thrive.
The 17.5-hectare Gatewalk Central in Cebu, for example, is expected to generate 1,300 jobs during construction, projected to increase to 9,000 once the mall and office are operational, while the 14-ha Mactan Seagrove is
seen to create some 13,000 jobs once fully developed.
All these components have contributed significantly to Ayala Land’s stellar perfor mance and prowess as a property developer—one that could be measured through land value appreciation, price increases in the secondary market, apart from its impact on both the community and economy.
Data from Leechiu Property Consultants showed commercial land values in Makati City have remained resilient despite the pandemic, even registering a double digit CAGR on the back of a healthy office and residential take-up. From 2016 to 2022, Makati recorded a 12 percent CAGR. The Lobien Realty Group meanwhile reported that land values of commercial properties in Makati range from P400,000 to P1 million per sqm.
Similarly residential properties within the Makati CBD remain to be most coveted, commanding prestige, prominence and among the highest prices in the market today. LPC data showed that average capital values of residential projects in Makati as of last year stood at P465,000 per sqm, recording a CAGR of 4 percent even during the pandemic years 2020 to 2022.
The same goes for Ayala’s newer estates. Prices of residential units in Altaraza have already appreciated, recording a 7 to 10 percent CAGR, while the value of its commercial lots have grown by 165 percent over a span of eight years. Commercial lots in Alviera meanwhile have seen a 53 percent value appreciation in a short span of three years.
Indeed, there’s more to an estate than just features. Sustainability demands commitment and continuing pursuance of measures to ensure that communities will continue to be healthy, livable, accessible, safe and complete just like Ayala Land estates. This only goes to show that truly, not all estates are created equal.
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