The Supreme Court, granting the original action for mandamus filed by the political party Social Justice Society (SJS) and Manila residents Vladimir Cabigao and Bonifacio Tumbokon, ordered the immediate removal of the oil depot as stipulated in City Ordinance No. 8027.
From the balita.ph:
The SC held that "there is nothing that legally hinders Mayor Atienza from enforcing Ordinance No. 8027."
As the father of the city, the SC added, Atienza should protect the safety of his constituents.
"The City Ordinance No. 8027 is a measure enacted pursuant to the delegated police power of local government units to promote the order, safety and health, morals and general welfare of the society," the SC said.
Ordinance No. 8027 reclassifies portions of the Manila districts of Pandacan and Sta. Ana from industrial to commercial, and directs certain business owners and operators, including Caltex (Philippines), Inc., Petron Corp., and Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp. to cease from operating their businesses within six months from the ordinance’s effectivity date.
The ordinance was approved by the Manila City Council on November 28, 2001 and took effect on December 28, 2001.
The oil depot covers about 26+ hectares (with another 9+ hectares further up river). That's an area half the size of Salcedo Village in the Ayala CBD, so that's a lot of commercial real estate.
Of course it's a brownfield, and will require major cleanup before it can be redeveloped. Luckily we don't have to reinvent the wheel, there are models for redevelopment of decomissioned oil terminals.
I hope the city government sees this as something more than just another major real estate deal. It could be a great opportunity for generating market rate and affordable housing, providing much needed open spaces and community amenities, and opening up the Pasig River waterfront.
More about this story from Manila Bulletin.