The City of Sto. Tomas has improved in terms of infrastructure during the three terms of incumbent Mayor Edna P. Sanchez, according to Sto. Tomas City Engineer Ruel R. Padullo.
When Sanchez started her first term back in 2013, Padullo said her early infrastructure projects focused on the widening of roads and bridges to ensure that Sto. Tomas could offer greater and easier mobility to its constituents.
The first years also involved the building of some 1,048,080 linear meters of line canals for various barangays, Padullo said.
He added that corollary to this, the need to address the water needs of the 30 barangays that composed Sto. Tomas City necessitated the installation and repair of the city’s water system.
Next came the vertical projects, which involved the construction of two-story school buildings for Barangays Sta. Elena, San Miguel, Santiago, Sta. Clara, and San Roque under the city’s Special Education Fund.
Mayor Sanchez likewise prioritized the setting up of facilities for the Organic Training Center in Sitio Jordan, San Vicente. In particular, this involved the construction of the office building with training hall of the Techno-Demo-Farm-Agri-Park.
The Agri-Park was developed into an agri-tourism site in 2020. Free range chicken were raised, a pond for azolla was constructed and rip rapping was started.
On top of these projects are the standard construction of multi-purpose halls and covered courts for various barangays. Today, all the barangays have new barangay halls.
“These projects had an allocation of Php153 million. While the mayor’s priorities changed in terms of the infrastructure programs over the years, the objective is still the same and that is to promote development within the city,” Padullo said.
While most of the mayor’s infrastructure projects could be considered substantial, Padullo shared four projects that were regarded by Mayor Sanchez as major projects. The first is the rehabilitation or improvement of the public market.
“This is the place where our residents go to for almost all their needs. The city government was able to provide additional broad stalls to serve our buyers and sellers better. Out market is now a one-stop shop,” he said.
Another major project is the construction of the bridge in Barangay San Vicente which solved the flooding problem in the area. It also functions as an alternative route for motorists who want to avoid the traffic along the highway.
“The city government likewise came up with a 205-unit housing program for residents from Poblacion I, Poblacion II and San Isidro Sur who were displaced by the Philippine National Railway project. This will ensure that they will be relocated to a place where they can continue to enjoy comfortable lives,” Padullo said.
The last major project that Sanchez initiated was the rehabilitation and widening of the access roads from Barangay San Pedro to Barangay Sta. Maria.
“As the National Shrine of Padre Pio is one of the City of Sto. Tomas’ tourism spots, this access road provides an alternative route for our visitors,” he said.
Now that Sanchez is in the last few months of her third term as mayor, Padullo said his office is concentrating on completing the following projects:
- Construction of the Rural Health Unit in San Miguel
- Rehabilitation/re-blocking of City Market Road and Parking with asphalt overay in Barangay Poblacion II, III and IV
- Development of a memorial park in Barangay Poblacion III and in San Roque
- Installation of energy efficient street lighting system for Poblacion I, II, III, IV in Barangay Sta. Anastascia, San Rafael and Santiago
- Completion of the multipurpose covered court for Barangay Sta. Elena, San Francisco and Sta. Cruz
- Improvement of Multipurpose Buidling for Barangay San Isidro Norte and Poblacion III
“The whole administration has been very supportive all throughout the years and if we look back, I can attest that Sto. Tomas City has improved so much. Yes, there is still a lot to be done and we will not stop there. We will ensure the continuity of service for the betterment of the city,” Padullo said.