12 January 2021 - Source: Myanmar Times

A public shelter will be constructed in Dala township in the Yangon Region with the help of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The project is scheduled for completion within eight months the management of the bank's Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), said Daw Kyi Kyi Myint, chair of township municipal committee.

"The project will be implemented with the financial aid of $190,000 from ADB. The building will be constructed on state-owned land and so there will be no cost for land," she said.

The operation will start in February and is slated for completion in October. The Yangon Region government, Yangon City Development Committee, ADB and ADPC selected the area from 33 townships within the municipality.

They selected Dala township, which near the mouth of the Yangon River. Having many nearby creeks, the township is prone to many natural disasters, including flooding.

"Most of the people living in Dala are working-class people or squatters. There are very few shelters for natural disasters. If we construct a public shelter, many people can use it when they are in trouble or need shelter," she said.

The shelter will be built on an acre wide land at the Ant Gyi ward, and it will become the first public shelter amongst 45 townships of Yangon. It will be two stories high. Water will be stored under the building, as Dala is famous for its water shortages. The construction team also plan to install a solar system for electricity.

The shelter is designed to accommodate 500 people including children and the elderly, with full facilities, including dining rooms and accommodation.

There are 54 villages in the area with a population of 180,000. Above all 15,000 squatters currently live in Dala township. With the lack of steady buildings, residents rely on monasteries during natural disasters.

"Here, houses are crowded and a lot of people share small dwellings. And transportation is not good. When the disasters hit, the shelter could help residents to get temporary assistance," she added.

U Htwe Tin, No. 2 constituency MP of Dala township agrees with her, saying that a shelter is truly needed for the residents of Dala when they face fires or flooding. "I welcome this brilliant idea. Now, whenever we experience a disaster we have a place to stay for a while," he said.

ADB has installed a total of six water purifiers with a JFPR-ADB grant – three in the western part of Ant Gyi ward, two in No (6) ward and one in 11/14 ward. Moreover, the project will also fence the ponds for drinking water and arrange the systematic collection of garbage around the township.