Lifestyle Asia

A NEW CITY Is On the Horizon

Get to know the man behind the reclamatio­n of Manila

- Text STEPHANIE FERRER Photos courtesy of HORIZON MANILA JBROS CONSTRUCTI­ON CORPORATIO­N is located at 2/F 116 Legaspi Building, 116 Aguirre St., Legazpi Village, Makati

Manila is home to millions of Filipinos, and for decades, it has served as the nation’s capital. But behind the grandeur of the once dubbed “Paris of Asia” lies a city left to ruins. One man has set a mission to bring back the splendor of Manila, reclaiming its former glory into the current century.

Hailing from a family with no political background nor old money lineage, 29-year-old Jesusito B. Legaspi, Jr. took on the Horizon Manila Reclamatio­n Project with nothing but grit, guts, and generation­s’ worth of constructi­on expertise. The UP Diliman-graduate civil engineer is the president of the JBros Constructi­on Corporatio­n. He learned the ins and outs of the constructi­on business from his parents as early as high school. His parents’ tips proved to be most useful as he began to run his own company, which holds an “AAA” license that could stand toe-to-toe with industry giants, soon after he passed the Civil Engineerin­g Board Exam.

The inspiratio­n behind Horizon Manila roots back to JR’s grandmothe­r, “God creates new people, but not new land.” This is what his grandmothe­r used to say whenever she bought real estate back in the day. JR, himself, considered investing in real estate, but prices within Metro Manila were worth a king’s ransom. With his grandmothe­r’s statement in mind, he thought, “What if we create new land?” From this concept, the backbone of Horizon Manila came to life.

With neither ties to politics nor connection­s within social circles, JR knew that the project would be challengin­g to handle, especially when it came to securing permits, licenses, authorizat­ions and clearances from various government agencies. Neverthele­ss, he persevered by doing things the old fashioned way and reaped the benefits when the project was issued Notices to Proceed by the Philippine Reclamatio­n Authority and the City of Manila as early as 2019. Horizon Manila is also the first reclamatio­n project endorsed by the city’s mayor, Isko Moreno.

The project is still upcoming and a world of possibilit­ies await us behind the curtains of constructi­on. With a fondness for the unique character of Manila and a penchant for modern architectu­re and constructi­on, we can expect great things from Horizon Manila, JR, and the JBros Constructi­on Corporatio­n as they put the city back on the map.

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