Issue of October 8, 2017
Mt. Province

Panagbenga Flower Festival
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LT farm village to benefit from improved landslide-free road
by Ma. Imelda Isabel Zabala

Farmers and residents of Barangay Alapang, La Trinidad, Benguet will now be delivering their goods to the market without worrying about road obstructions during rainy days.

Drawing to a close is the construction of a 1.76-kilometer slope protection designed to protect the agricultural area as well as residential lots of 3,735 direct beneficiaries of sitios Alapang Proper and Atoy. The total project cost is P4,086,000.

Engr. Elsa P. Gaspar, a rural infrastructure engineer assigned in Benguet, said prior to the construction, the road was narrow and it had no drainage canal and slope protection. During rainy months, landslides obstructed the road carriage way, blocking the barangay roads to the national highway.

Farmers experienced production losses and high spoilage rate of their products reportedly due to landslides in critical portions of the road. Residents, on the other hand, complained that the soil erosion prevented them from using the road.

According to the proposed subproject, the lack of slope protection of the access road contributed to high post-harvest losses and isolation of the barangay due to landslides and road closures.

The slope protection funded by the Philippine Rural Development Project is aimed at increasing the soil’s resistance to erosion, reducing postharvest losses due to impassable road caused by erosion by at least 10 percent, increasing agricultural production area by 10 percent, and providing immediate protection of exposed areas.

The subproject was evaluated and expected to bring economic benefits such as increase in agricultural production area by 10 percent, benefits of additional workday, and savings in transportation losses. 

Production losses will be diminished for saleable crops such as Chinese cabbage, lettuce, broccoli, pechay, mustard, chayote, coffee, and cutflowers particularly rose and chrysanthemum.

Alapang residents are optimistic that the structure will jumpstart the development of their barangay.

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