US inaugurates new embassy annex facility in Manila-A A +A
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
IN AN important symbol of America's commitment to an enduring friendship with the Philippines, United States Ambassador to the Philippines, Harry K. Thomas, Jr., along with other US Embassy representatives "cut the ribbon" on a new annex facility in Manila today at an event that was attended by representatives of Manila City Government and officers of the Ayala Group of companies, including Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, chairman and CEO of Ayala Corporation, Bernard Dy, Executive Vice President, of Ayala Land, Inc., and Dante Abando, President of Makati Development Corporation.
The inauguration of this annex, designed and built by Makati Development Corporation, is the culmination of a six-year, two-phase project totaling $166 million, that included the construction of three annex facilities, a utility building, access control structures, and a parking garage built on the existing US Embassy complex.
The new annex incorporates numerous sustainable features, most notably solar reflective roofing, the use of indigenous trees and shrubs for landscaping, and on-site treatment of wastewater that is reused for irrigation. Combined, these features conserve resources and reduce operating costs. The new facility has been registered with the US Green Building Council for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) certification.
Speaking at the event, which was "star-spangled" with the presence of Filipino talents Stephanie Reese, Zendee, and Jett Pangan, Ambassador Thomas said: "These improvements in US Embassy facilities in Manila mirror the state of US-Philippines relations: our relations are dynamic, growing, and adapting with the times and to the needs of our two peoples. "And," he quipped, "as our relationship with the Philippines has grown and matured, so too, have our square footage requirements!"
The new four-storey building is the last of the three new main office annex buildings that the Department of State is constructing for the US Embassy in Manila as part of six-year facilities improvement project. Two other new buildings inaugurated in 2011, currently house the Embassy's Consular Section, and the Department of Veterans Affairs offices and out-patient clinic.
The building inaugurated today will be the workplace for representatives of 24 different Embassy Sections and US Government agencies, including the United States Agency for International Development, the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, and several law-enforcement agencies. It will also house the Public Affairs Section, and the Thomas Jefferson Information Center. (PR)