1. Geophysical Sector 

The City of San Jose del Monte is located at the northeast portion of Manila. It is bounded by the municipalities of Santa Maria and Marilao to the west and Norzagaray to the north, all of Bulacan, municipality of Rodrigue, Rial to the southeast, Quezon province lies to its east, and the cities of Quezon and Caloocan to the south. The City is approximately 42 kilometers away from Manila.

It is made up of 59 barangays, all of which cover 10,553 hectares, according to the Land Management Bureau. However, the Local Government Unit (LGU) claims an actual territorial area of 31,294 hectares; this includes the disputed areas with adjacent municipalities. The Angat Watershed Reservation, which has a land area of 18,000 hectares, is partly within the City.

The principal access routes to the City coming from the north is via the Quirino Highway and the Marilao-San Jose del Monte Road. These roads connect SJDM to Norzagaray and Marilao , Bulacan. From Metro Manila, the City may also be accessed through Quirino Highway after traversing Quezon City and Caloocan Cities. Its major links to the western municipalities of Sta. Maria and Marilao are in turn the Sta. Maria-Sapang Palay Road and Sta. Maria-Tungkong Mangga Road. The latter provides the link with the North Luzon Express Way.

The elevation of the City ranges from approximately 40-900 meters above te sea level; the relief transitions from warm lowland to cool upland as one goes eastward. This is because the City is part of the Sierra Madre mountain range. Plains and river valley flats characterize the western and southwestern quadrant of the City. The central portion and much of its eastern section is made up of undulating hills with low relief. High relief areas moderate slopes best describe its extreme eastern and northwestern quadrant. The main maps are annexed to the main document.
Slopes of three to eight percent (3-8%) are extensively found in the City, particularly on the western half of the area. Slopes of 30-50% comprise the smallest portion of the total land area. The approximate coverage of lands of each type of slope percentage is shown in Table 1-1 in the next page.

Table 1-1 The Distribution of Slope Classes and Areas Across Barangays

Level to nearly level  0 to 3 Poblacion to Poblacion I, Sapang Palay Proper, Sto. Cristo, Sta. Cruz I to II, San Pedro, San Pedro, Dulong Bayan, Muzon, and Gaya-gaya 1,789.367 17.04
 Level to gently sloping  3 to 8  San Isidro, San Roque, Kaybanban, Tungkong Mangga, Ciudad Real, San Rafael I-IV, Graceville, Muzon, Poblacion, Dulong Bayan, Kaypian, Sapang Palay Proper, Fatima I to V, Sto. Nino I and II, Assumption, Bagong Buhay I to III, San Martin de Porres, Lawang Pare, and Citrus  4,615.337 43.73 
 Sloping to undulating 8 to 18  Minuyan Proper, San Roque, San Isidro, Ciudad Real, Sapang Palay Proper, Dulong Bayan and Muzon   2,231.217 21.14 
 Undulating to rolling  18 to 30   Minuyan I to V, Kaypian, Sto. Cristo, Kaybanban, Maharlika, Tungkong Mangga, San Manuel, Graceville, and Gaya-gaya  1,430.691  13.56 
 Rolling to hilly 30 to 50  San Roque  194.3203  1.84 
 Hilly to mountainous  50 and over   Forest Zone  283.0668  2.68 
Total      10,553.00  100 

City of San Jose del Monte/Economic Profile 2014


The rivers and creeks that flow within San Jose del Monte are direct tributaries of Angat River, which flows from the Angat Reservoir. Major natural waterways of San Jose del Monte are the Kipungok, Sto. Cristo and Sta. Maria river systems. Kipungok River separates San Jose del Monte from Caloocan City and Quezon City. It is directly connected to Marilao River, which flows downwards to Manila bay. Draining to these rivers are various creeks and streams, which act as catchment areas for the surface water runoff of the City. Among these creeks are the Bigte, Kantulot, Katinga and Salamin Creeks.

Almost 47% of the City’s total land area is covered by shallow well areas or areas suitable for construction of wells with depths of not more than 20 meters. These areas are located at the City’s western peripheries. This area is located at the Midwestern portion of the City. The rest are deep well areas, which are characterized by aquifers generally located at a depth of more than 20 meters. According to the Local Water Utilities Administration, There are 384 wells in the City. The map in the next page displays the locations of some wells that tap into the aquifers of the area; the wells are shown as dots.


              In the modified Corona Climate Classification System, the City is under the Type I climate. This implies that the dry season of San Jose del Monte, and the Province in general, is usually from December to April. On the other hand, the wet season is from May to November. The dry season usually coincides with cool weather while the wet season is associated with the tropical storms and afternoon thunderstorms. Out of all tropical cyclones that pass through the country every year, about 16% pass through the area.

              The City experiences a tropical climate, which is Am in the Koppen-Geiger climate classification. This means that there is significant rainfall for the most of the year whicle the dry season is relatively shorter that the wet season. With an average annual temperature of 27.6°C, the City has mean monthly figures that range from 25.6°C in January and 29.6°C in May. The climatological factors behind such temperature patterns produce 2,637 mm of annual precipitation.

              The mean annual relative humidity is 75%. The highest level is normally during the months of August to September. The monthly mean is 83%; the lowest is in April with only 66%.

            The two wind systems of the Northeast Monsoon (October to April) and Southwest Monsoon (May to October) affect the City every year. The Northeast Monsoon originates from the Asiatic winter anti-cyclones and attains maximum strength in January. On the other hand, the Southwest Monsoon originates from the Indian Ocean. The annual average wind speed is three meters per second (3m/sec).

            Cloud cover is highest in the month of June and the lowest in January. As the City is along the Sierra Madre mountain range, orographic precipitation makes the skies over cloudier than towns west of the City.

            About climate change, there shall be changes in temperature from 2020 to 2050 average in from 0.9 to 2.1°C. The projected percentage change in rainfall for the same period shall be from -23% to 23.6%; this means that the dry months shall become a lot drier while over wet months there shall be longer and heavier rains. Extreme weather events such as typhoons shall be more frequent.


1.6.1. General Land Use


            Growing commercial, residential, and light industrial areas, are found all over the City at major road intersections and along major thoroughfares. However, the bulk of the City’s built-up areas are mostly located west of Quirino Highway at the primary level to gently sloping 0-8% terrain. Most of the City’s schools, government institutions, commercial developments, industries, and other urban amenities are located within this section. The largest contiguous built-up area is located at Sapang Palay Resettlement Project area, followed by the conurbation in Tungkong Mangga and Muzon.

            A high-density commercial strips that follows the Quirino Highway (yellow line) divides the City into heavily built-up western section, and the largely agricultural eastern section (Map 1-2 and Figure 1-2). Such pattern can also be seen in the land cover map included in the map pack.

            The developments east of Quirino Highway are mostly scattered residential areas and agricultural lands. However, there are also few subdivisions that are located some distance away from Ciudad Real and are taking advantage of its secluded and rural atmosphere. These are the Blessed Sacrament Seminary and an Augustinian convent.

            The clusters of built-up land uses found throughout the City are dominated by residential uses such as those associated with gated communities, socialized housing, and row houses. These clusters, together with the built-up areas located along primary and secondary transport corridors, produce an overall pattern of sprawl (Figure 1-3).

            In between the built-up clusters are pockets of agricultural lands, which are continuously converted into built-up uses. Planted in these agricultural lands are various crops such as rice and corn. The clustering pattern for both built-up and agricultural uses is also partly due to the decisions made by the settlers with regard to the hilly conditions that dominate the city’s topography. Most of households in the western half of the City opted to convert their lands to residential uses while other maintained the farms. This left upland uses, such as those pertaining to forest use, more common towards the easternmost zones of the City (Figure 1-4).

            Most vegetative outgrowths are located at difficult to build areas. But there are instances when these vegetative outgrowths are integrated within the built-up areas, usually found in the west, are a number heavily vegetated areas. Supplementing these is   a number of mini forest projects of the City Government. The City Agriculture Office maintains a 1.65-hectare Mini Forest Project in Barangay Muzon along the San Jose del Monte- Marilao Provincial Road and a mahogany planting site.

Residential Land Uses

            San Jose del Monte currently has more than a hundred private subdivisions located in various barangays. The most prolific developer in the City is Palmera Homes, Inc., which has subdivisions located in Barangays Sto. Cristo, Muzon and Kaypian.

            There are also at least six resettlement projects of the National Housing Authority within the city. Some of these resettlement projects consist of the 752 hectares Sapang Palay resettlement Project (SPRP) in Sapang Palay, the Towerville Resettlement Project in Barangay Minuyan /Sto. Cristo, the Pabahay 2000 Housing Project in Barangay Muzon and the Liberty Upgrading Project in Barangay Gumaoc. The SPRP site, was subdivided in 1991 and is now comprised of Sapang Palay Proper, Fatima I to V, San Rafael I to V, San Pedro, Sta. Cruz I to V, San Martin I to IV, Bagong Buhay I to III, Sto. Niño I and II, Assumption, San Martin de Porres, and Lawang Pare. The subdivisions and resettlement projects are elaborated in the social sector subsection on housing.


             Institutional uses in the City are usually associated with government, educational, and religious activities. Prominent among these uses are those done in the sites and vicinities of the City Hall (with St. Joseph the Worker Parish beside it), Iglesia ng Diyos kay Kristo Hesus (with the Christian Ecclesiastical School in Gaya-gaya), and our Lady of Lourdes Grotto in Graceville (Figure 1-6).


            Industrial activity in San Jose del Monte is still not very extensive. Only a few industries can be found in various areas within the City. Major industries in the area include marble production, feed mills, manufacturing, construction, and food processing. Such industrial situation is elaborated in the chapter on the local economy (Chapter 4).


            The major economic activities of San Jose del Monte are in agri-business manufacturing, and wholesale and retail trading. Commercial developments are scattered all over the various areas in the City. The commercial economy of SJDM is currently gravitating towards different nodes. These nodes have bustling commercial atmosphere distinct from the other areas of the City. They are characterized by the presence of numerous and contiguous commercial establishments. Residential areas and subdivisions of various types are typically found in their vicinity.

            The recreational land uses are described and explained in the last section of the chapter on the local economy.

1.6.2. Urban Land Uses

            The urban land use clusters in the city are held together by the attraction of various nodes with important functions. These nodes usually have tertiary industries dominating their centers, which are serviced by the City’s best and well-travelled thoroughfares. The said nodes of activities in San Jose del Monte are the following:

Poblacion Node

            The most outstanding features of the Poblacion are the City Hall and the Roman Catholic Church. Small business establishments including restaurants, sari-sari stores, bakeries, bookstores and the like that serve the needs of the people that frequent these two structures are found within the vicinity. Residential areas with its accompanying institutional and commercial land uses that are served by narrow streets, surround this node.

Tungkong Mangga Node

            The node in Tungkong Mangga is the commercial district located in the intersection of Quirino Highway and the Sta. Maria –Tungkong Mangga – Muzon National Road. Tungkong Mannga appears to be the most progressive commercial node of San Jose del Monte. Many of the City’s banks – BPI Family Bank, Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company, Philippine National Bank, BDO, Chinabank Savings, PSBank, Eastwest Bank, Planbank and Landbank – are located in the Tungkong Mangga Area. Its 86 Pawnshop/Lending Investor establishments are also mostly located in Tungkong Mangga, Muzon and the northernmost barangays in the former Sapang Palay Resettlement area. Of the city’s markets – two public markets and many other private markets – four are in Tungkong Mangga.

Muzon Node

            This node is the commercial district located in the intersection between the Sta. Maria- Tungkong Mangga Provincial Road (Bocaue Provincial Road) and the San Jose del Monte- Marilao Road. Located within this area is the South Triangle Wet and Dry Market, the Philippine Business Bank, RCBC, Country Bank, Planbank, a number of pawnshops and lending investors, other business and light industrial establishments including bakeries and pharmacies.

Sapang Palay or “Sampol” Node

            The node in the Sapang Palay Resettlement Project (SPRP) is located along EVR Ave. where the Sampol Market is situated. This node primarily serves the 29 barangays at the northwestern portion of the city. Within the area are various agribusinesses, wholesale and retail trading and manufacturing establishments, including the Emerald Bank, BDO, Sta. Maria Rural Bank, HBC, Policarpio Market, Victory Mall and Puregold.

            Aside from these nodes, commercial, agri-business and other establishments are also found in linear fashion along the major thoroughfares of San Jose del Monte.

            What is the typology of such urban land use clusters? What general trends can be identified across the many nodes and subnodes in the city? As seen in Figure 1-7, there are some urbanizing clusters organized around households concentrated on farming and other agricultural uses, such as those in Barangay San Isidro (diagram 1). In Muzon, another typical urban land use cluster is the medium-to high-density residential land use combination that usually displays a gridiron pattern (diagram 2); these are usually found on the western half of the city. Next, informal residential urban clusters are characterized by housing units that exhibit more sinuous and organic settlement patterns, as seen in Minuyan Proper (diagram 3). In the fourth diagram, institutional land uses anchor the urban growth in the cluster; while it may not display the same density as those in previous two types, this type of urban clustering endures the land use  changes throughout the city due to the prime importance of the City Hall, church, and other institutions. Commercial and inter-town transport activities make the fifth cluster type grow in importance through the decades (diagram 5); Tungkong Mangga is the first in the said cluster type. The sixth diagram displays a future type of urban cluster: the high-end residential area. This cluster, while not seen as a high-density area in the foreseeable future due to its pricing, shall be attracting urban land use change in its peripheries in the form of commercial strips, institutional land uses, and recreational places.


            The identified places included in the Network Protected Areas for Agricultural and Agroindustrial Development (NPAAAD) of San Jose del Monte are located in Barangays Gaya-gaya, Graceville, Muzon, Dulong Bayan, Sapang Palay Proper, Kaypian, Tungkong Mangga and Kaybanban. These are mostly planted with rice. These NPAAAD areas are part of Strategic Agriculture and Fisheries Development Zones (SAFDZ), which total to 831.83 hectares. Meanwhile, the total forestland in the city amounts to 161.94 hectares; these forestlands are in the east of the city, as indicated in the land cover map shown before. The rest of the land area is devoted to areas of waterways and lands that are alienable and disposable (A&D).


            In the Philippine Fault Zone (PFZ), the seismic situation of the city is greatly connected to the dynamics of the Valley Fault System (VFS). The VFS runs from the Bulacan Portion of the Sierra Madre mountain range; through the National Capital Region  (NCR); and southwards to the provinces of Laguna, Cavite, and Batangas (Map 1-3). According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, the fault system is due to move anytime with respect to historical records and geological studies; an orange circle indicates the relative location of San Jose del Monte.

            According to the Metro Manila Earthquake Impact Reduction Study (MMEIRS), in the event of an earthquake along the fault system there shall be a great amount of destruction in Metro Manila and surrounding cities and municipalities. The ground shaking and liquefaction that the earthquake shall induce shall have immediate impacts such as loss of life and catastrophic destruction of public infrastructure.

            In relation to seismic movements such as earthquakes, the risk of ground ruptures and ground shaking is particularly present in the city and surrounding areas. The potential ground rupture areas are highlighted in red lines in the east part of the city (Map 1-4). In Map 1-5, the ground-shaking hazard for the city is registered at approximately 7.5 to 8 in the PHILVOLCS Earthquake Intensity Scale (Destructive to very Destructive); this means that the earthquake can cause many well-built buildings to collapse. In addition, bridges and other infrastructure will be severely damaged while cracks and large fissures will appear.

            Meanwhile, according to the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), the city is prone to two types of geohazards: mass movement and flooding. The risk of mass movement in the form of landslides covers a large part of the city; the level of susceptibility associated with the risk was classified by the MGB as “low susceptibility”, which is highlighted in the map as the yellow-colored areas. Medium to high susceptibility to landslides (green and red areas) become more common in the northern and eastern sections of the city. On the other hand, flooding is more possible in the northwestern portions of the city where the local drainage systems connected to the Sta. Maria River traverse; these were classified by the MGB as “low to moderate susceptibility” areas, which were highlighted in peach color (Map 1-6).

            With regard to erosion and situation, these processes are more observable in the eastern parts of the city- the hilly and mountainous areas of Barangays San Isidro, Paradise III, San Roque, Tungkong Mangga, Ciudad Real, Kaybanban, Minuyan Proper, and Sto. Cristo. In those areas, the combination of the effects of slope angle, lack of vegetative cover, and gravity intensify the physical/mechanical weathering of the recent alluvium.  The sediments are then transformed into load and carried into the central and northeastern parts of the city towards the higher order streams and water channels and intensify situation. In these eastern parts of the city, land cover change due to suburbanization is the dominant factor in inducing erosion.