PROS Architects and Planners

Manila Transit Center for Refugees

Project Title & Location
MIA, Pasay City


United Nations High Commission for Refugees
Geneva, Switzerland

Project Completion


Associated Firms

GALHIA Architects
Design Management & Development Corp
Design Coordinates, Inc
Amalgamated Project Management Services

Services Provided
- Architectural Programming
- Architectural & Engineering Design
- Construction Management

With the defeat of the United States of America in the Vietnam War in 1975 an exodus of refugees, generally called "boat people" ensued. In the 1980's the number of refugees was large enough to require a massive international program for their processing prior to their relocation to recipient countries.

One of the largest processing centers was located in Morong, Bataan Province. With its establishment, the construction of a Transit Center beside the Manila International Airport became a necessity. The purpose of the refugee transit facilities was to provide up to 800 refugees at a time with temporary resting facilities before embarking on the final leg of their journey to permanent recipient countries.

The most appropriate location for the transit center was the 1.7-hectare lot of the Philippine Aerospace Development Corporation. The facility was a large unobstructed area in order to allow the refugees to stay in a single area. This increased visibility for ease of supervision and better control by personnel. Another essential requirement was for the whole area for sleeping be regularly water-flushed after occupancy. Feeding was done with the distribution of food packs that was served in a covered area which double as an assembly area. Allocated areas were as follows;

Men's Quarters- 864 sqm
Women's Quarters- 64 sqm
Toilets- 432 sqm
Adm & Food Distribution- 816 sqm
Total- 3,408 sqm

The facility was financed by the UN High Commission for Refugees and was operated by ICM-CIM.