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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Development of a land use databank for community and regional planning : a case of the Philippines Calabia, Gerardo S.

Abstract

This thesis on the development of a land use databank for community and regional planning in the Philippines has two main objectives. The first is to show that a planning databank is an indispensable component in the present day urban and regional planning process. The second is to propose how the databank concepts may be introduced in the Philippine planning approach to community and regional development. In attempting to achieve the first objective, Chapters I to III of the thesis focused on the problem of lack of accurate, adequate and relevant planning data; on the various concepts about land and land use and their relevance to the establishment of a land use databank; and on the databank case studies to find out how a planning databank is actually established, maintained and used for planning purposes. Present day urban and regional analyses have continuously relied on vast amounts of data. However, because the data needed for such analyses were not organized, because the vast files of data from various sources lacked comparability for adequate analysis, and because data were not updated for current usage, planning research objectives were rarely realized. The planning databank is a fairly recent tool to remedy the problem of lack of accurate, relevant and adequate planning data. A planning databank may be defined as a "system which employs an electronic computing facility to develop information from a relevant set of data derived from various sources", or it may mean simply as "an organized method of using data for a specific purpose." Since the planning databank concept is still new, even by American planning experience, introducing this concept to the Philippines would be limited by many "cultural barriers." Chapter IV attempted to single out these "cultural barriers". The beliefs among the citizen that data being collected will be used against them, as for example, increasing their taxes; inter-agency suspicion among the possible sources of data; and lack of technical skills considered adequate to operate a planning databank, were possible hindrances to the establishment of a databank in the Philippines. Another is lack of awareness in the Philippines for physical planning. In view of the "cultural barriers", it was decided that a more realistic approach to the establishment of a land use databank in the Philippines should include the following assumptions: First, that there exists an awareness among the national, provincial and local officials regarding the need for physical planning in the community or region. If the condition prevails, then the databank concept may be introduced on a cooperative basis between the Country's Regional Development Authorities and the regional communities. Second, that there is national government financial assistance for acquiring the needed electronic data processing equipment and for maintaining the databank's major operations. Without the financial assistance from the national government, the financial requirements for the system may be excessive for the Regional Authorities to bear. The proposed databank followed the enumerated sequence of computer-oriented activities: (a) identification of generalized categories of data considered essential for effective community and regional planning; (b) inventory of data sources and data; (c) development of information record format and code; (d) data collection and data collection priorities; and (e) data file creation, maintenance and retrieval. The proposed databank also include the necessary administrative arrangements, as well as research and decision-making management scheme. The planning databank is a long-range solution to the problem of lack of reliable and adequate planning data. The major activities involved, such as data collection, data file creation and maintenance, and data retrieval must be conceived as a continuing process.

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