LIMA sets expansion

    An aerial view of The Outlets at Lipa, AboitizLand’s first commercial development in Luzon.

    AboitizLand Inc. is expanding its township in Batangas amid sustained interest in its properties across segments industrial, residential and commercial. Rafael de Mesa, first vice president for operations, said developers are turning outside the big cities for their projects while investors will be more selective in the next 12 to 18 months in choosing where to put their money.

    At a virtual conference of the Urban Land Institute on June 30, De Mesa said the shift to areas outside big cities has been observed in its own projects which are mostly in the provinces.

    De Mesa cited as a prime example its LIMA township in Batangas which has not only addressed the needs of the stakeholders within its proper ty, but also those in the surrounding communities.

    The industrial zone is complemented by a business district that houses Lima Park Hotel, a 138-room four-star hotel, Outlets at Lipa an outdoor mall and Lima Exchange which houses the city’s transport terminal.

    De Mesa said Aboitiz Land is embarking on the next phase of development which will include further industrial expansion and the transformation of the business district. He said the company will soon begin construction on a LIMA sets expansion multi- building business process outsourcing complex, and will begin selling commercial lots.

    There has also been strong demand for housing in the area , as shown by its own residential community, The Villages at Lipa, which is now under construction. Understanding the need to develop housing to serve all segments of the market, AboitizLand will also be developing dorms, as well as rental apartments with its own brand, which it will be have been expanding aggressively in Metro Manila.

    “As we expand the property and add new components, the right blueprint that takes into consideration economics and other factors, such as utility infrastructure development planning acquisition and sustainability is extremely important,” De Mesa said.

    Aboitiz Land sister companies provide the power and water and sewage infrastructure.

    “There’s nothing like having a cohesive and flexible plan, but until it’s battle proven, you will never know the extent of its effectiveness,” De Mesa said.

    “We have been put to the test in various times in just the last six months from a typhoon at the end of last year to a volcano to start the year. And now this global pandemic. But we’re happy to say that our blueprint has been effective as business interruption at Lima was minimal. Although some of our locators experienced disruption to their workforce and supply chain, it was only minimal,” De Mesa said.

    Since acquiring LIMA in 2014, AboitizLand has transformed it into a 700-hectare mixed-use estate, with the anchor LIMA Technology Center hosting 111 locators. Its manufacturing and warehousing operations generate more than 50,000 jobs in export-driven production industries.

    An aerial view of The Outlets at Lipa, AboitizLand’s first commercial development in Luzon.