San Mateo, Rizal (Filipino: Bayan ng San Mateo,
Lalawigan ng Rizal or simply San Mateo) is a first
class urban municipality of
the island of Luzon, San Mateo
is one of 13 municipalities
and a capital city that
make up the Province of
Rizal, Region 4-A of the
Philippines. San Mateo is part of the Metro Luzon Urban Beltway. Metro Luzon is composed of Region 3, Region
4-A (CALABARZON) and the nearby National Capital Region . Metro Luzon is one of four Super Regions in
is located along the western border of Rizal Province, it is bordered on the west by Quezon City, to the south by Marikina City and Antipolo
City, the capital of Rizal Province, and to the north by Rodriguez also in Rizal
province. It is approximately 24 kilometers away from
Manila and 11 kilometers south of Pasig City, the former town capital of Rizal.
According to the 2007 Philippine
, San Mateo has population of 184,860 inhabitants.
contributes 8.09% of the total population of Rizal.
with NCR, San Mateo is one of the fast-track municipalities
to the Metropolitan Manila
Development Authority and the Provincial Government of Rizal.
The municipality features many spacious
parks, tree-lined streets and roads, and industrial zones. Most of
the municipality is composed of residential areas and the other
side is composed of tons of trees, high plateaus and rocky
proximity of San Mateo to Metro Manila and the contiguous urbanization surrounding the
Capital Region, the
municipality is conurbated to the urban agglomeration of Greater Manila Area .
book Conquistas De Las Islas Filipinas, Father Gaspar de San
Agustin records the Municipality of San Mateo in 1572 as a town
annexed to Pasig.
described the inhabitants as “fierce but friendly and of quiet
disposition.” Father Juan de Medina, in his account Relacion de los
Con ventos Y Pueblos Fundados por los PP. Agustinos, likewise put
1572 as the year the Parish of San Mateo was established.
according to Miguel Lopez de
Legazpi, the first Spanish Governor in the Philippines (1571 to 1572), it was Juan de Salcedo, his nephew
who discovered the site of present-day San Mateo during one of his
expeditions to Manila from
Cebu. Accounts say that two years before he came
to Manila from
Cebu, Legazpi sent Salcedo along with 150 soldiers to
prepare the inauguration of the City of Manila. It must have been Salcedo who discovered the
town before Legazpi inaugurated Manila on June 25,
Still, another account was that of Father Cavada, an Augustinian
priest, who said that the first
chapel in the country, having the Patron Saint Matthew
was built by the riverside in
1596 south of the present Poblacion of San Mateo which was then
only a Barrio of Tondo
. Saint Matthew
thus gave to the town its name
when the chapel was set up during his feast day.
What may be gleaned from the above accounts somehow is that San
Mateo was discovered sometime in 1571, while it was in 1596 when it
acquired its first church. It may be true, too, that the Parish of
San Mateo was set up in 1572.
Aside from the controversy over the date of its discovery or
creation, there is also uncertainty as to how San Mateo acquired
its name. According to one account, when the Spaniards made a
reconnaissance of Manila’s environs, they came upon the San Mateo
flood plains and became enamored by the natural beauty of the
place. They decided to establish a community in the place and one
day, a Spanish scribe happened to stand on a mound with a book on
one hand and a pen on the other. His statue-like pose prompted a
companion to laugh and comment, "Muy" friend, the way you are now
makes you look like Saint Matthew
referring of course to the usual way the evangelist saint is
depicted in his statues. In the midst of their banter and
merriment, they decided to call the place they discovered ‘San
Another account says that the Municipality of San Mateo was so
called because of its geographical resemblance to another town in
Spain with the same name. As described by Paluzie in a geographical
book, this small Spanish town was near a high mountain (and) has a
river that flows in its center which often floods but quickly
recedes. this town is also a grazing ground for big animals and a
fishing village. Indeed, San Mateo is presently traversed by the
Maly and Nangka rivers and its flood plains may have been a lush
grazing area then.
priests in San Mateo
were later formally replaced (in 1689) by the Jesuits
who as early as 1637 included San Mateo as
one of their missions, with the missions of San Isidro and Paynaan
under it. The Jesuit Order brought with them an image
of the Virgin Mary which came from the
town of Aranzazu, Nueva Vizcaya, Spain.
were the ones responsible for
building the church presently located in the Poblacion since the
original chapel set up by the Augustinians
beside the river was destroyed
during a flood. The location of the present church is in Barangay
Sta. Ana and its patron saint is the Virgin
of Aranzazu. The original images of Saint Matthew
which was housed in the old
chapel has been transferred
to Barangay Dulongbayan (formerly llaya) and is now the patron
saint of the Barangay and whose feast day is always celebrated on
Over the centuries, San Mateo has had a colorful and distinguished
history. In 1639, a pitched battle ensued between Chinese rebels,
on one hand and Spanish and native troops, on the other.
Chinese were defeated and retreated east to the Sierra Madre
Mountains, but not before burning the town and its
16, 1687, the territory and convent of San Mateo were added to
Pasig by the Augustinians,
with the headquarters and residences of the missionary at Mariquina
Two years later, the Agustinians handed
over the ecclesiastical administration of San Mateo to the Jesuits
. In 1699, the convent of St. Augustine
won in a court case against the
native inhabitants with regard to a claim over a ranch in the
district of San Mateo.
From 1696 to 1746, the town residents rebelled against the Spanish
authority in the municipality. They were forced to go to the
mountains and abandon the lowland settlement. However, in 1746, the
townspeople returned to the lowlands after having been wooed and
persuaded by the Jesuit
The independent-mindedness of the San Mateo people showed itself
again in the 15-year period from 1751 to 1765 when the natives
rebelled against Spanish governance. The residents were ordered to
surrender their weapons, but they refused. With this resistance,
the Spanish government
to reduce the town to ruins.
In 1712, the Conde de Lizarriaga, the Governor of the Islands, sent
Captain Don Lorenzo de Yturriaga together with 12 soldiers to
punish Captain Pambila, a native chieftain who was reportedly
inciting the residents to revolt against the Spanish government and
the local Spanish priest. Captain Pambila attacked the Spanish
officer, but the latter was able to parry the blow and shot the
native leader dead.
with its large size was dismembered on April 27, 1871 when Captain
General Isquierdo issued a decree separating the barrios of Balite,
Burgos, Marang and Calipahan from San Mateo and formed them into
the new municipality of Montalban .
During the Spanish Period, there was only one public school in San
Mateo and the educational advancement of the youth was very slow.
were very few feathers and the books used were limited to the
religious tracts called Eaton, Camia, Castiana and Doctrina
Christiana After knowing how to read, most students quit school
while a few who were wealthy enrolled in the friar schools in
November, 1896, during the revolution against Spain, General
Llanera of the Filipino forces made San Mateo his
And on August 6, 1898, San Mateo joined the
revolutionary government of Gen.
. During the
Geronimo’s guerilla bands from the foothills of San Mateo and
Montalban attacked the American troops in October,
However, the Filipinos were defeated. A curious twist
of history occurred when during the fighting, Gen. Lawton—the
famous general who captured the elusive Indian rebel named
Geronimo, among his exploits—was also killed by the forces of a
Filipino bearing the same name—Gen. Licerio Geronimo
. In the eyes of the
Filipino people, Gen. Geronimo became a great man for killing an
illustrious American General who distinguished himself during the
American Civil War and the
American military campaign in Cuba as well as
In northern, southern and central Luzon.
During the American Occupation. Act No. 137 of the Philippine Commission incorporated San
Mateo into the newly created province of Rizal on June 11, 1901.
In line with its policy of
fiscal economy and centralized governance, the Philippine Commission
enacted Act No.
1903 which consolidated the municipalities of San Mateo and
Montalban, with the former serving as seat of
On February 29, 1908, Executive Order No. 20
separated San Mateo from Montalban, making the former an
independent municipality. Its real divisions then included the
barrios of Ampid, Sta Ana, Guitnangbayan, Dulongbayan, Malanday,
Guinayang and Maly. However, due to constant development of the
rural areas and the increase in population, the barrios of
Guitnangbayan and Dulongbayan were divided into two sections.
With regard to education, it was in 1909 during the American Period
when public schools were opened in the country under the
supervision of Dr. David Burrows. San Mateo became one of the
recipients of the benefits of the new democratized system of
education when Mr. Frank Green was assigned to the town as the
first school supervisor who was assisted by two Filipino teachers,
namely, Jose Bernabe and Miguel Cristi. The English Language was
also taught in the public school. Transportation and other
facilities in the municipality were increased and repaired thus
resulting to more communication and exchange of goods and services.
During the Japanese Occupation
the Japanese Army
San Mateo, but no battle transpired between the Japanese and
Filipino forces. There were only minor encounters between the
Japanese soldiers and members of the Filipino guerilla forces.
Nevertheless, some prominent residents of the town were killed and
maltreated by the Japanese
on suspicion that they were either members or
supporters of guerillas
Upon their arrival in the municipality, the Japanese forces
recommended the appropriation of school buildings and some big
houses and used them as their headquarters. Productive rice lands
irrigated by water from the main pipe of the Metropolitan Water
District have also been forcibly appropriated and tilled under the
direct supervision of the Japanese officials. Livestock and crops
were likewise confiscated to supply the food needs of the Japanese
military in San Mateo and Montalban (now Rodriguez).
American forces landed in North of
Manila on February
3, 1945 and started recapturing the surrounding areas, San Mateo
came under the line of fire of the U.S. Forces
was continued by helped to the Filipino soldiers and guerrilla
fighters. Residents were advised by the Air Raid Warden to vacate
the Poblacion and seek refuge in Sitio Kalamyong on the west bank
of the Marikina River
. There they
built temporary shelters while the U.S. Air Force bombarded
the Japanese Headquarters in Montalban everyday.
However, one afternoon a
lamentable thing happened when a bomb carried by one American Air
Force plane was accidentally released over the evacuation area at
Sitio Kalamyong. About one hundred civilians died from the
accidental bomb explosion.
Although in the aftermath of the war the American Government
people of San Mateo for the war damages they sustained, there were
cases when the amounts received were not considered commensurate to
the sufferings endured. When municipal governance was instituted by
in San Mateo in 1799, the
town was governed by a Governadorcillo
who served for one year and
exercised the power to appoint the Cabeza de Barangay
for the same term of
one year. However, there were instances when the Governadorcillo
served for two or three
years. The first resident appointed to the post of Governadorcillo
in 1799 was Donato Sulit
while the last one to hold the post in 1895 was Ismael Amado, Jr.
who incidentally continued serving up to 1905 even after the
establishment of the Civil Government under the American Regime in
1901 when he was appointed Kapitan Municipal by the Military
Governor of the United States Army Department.
San Mateo become part of Rizal?
Republic Act No. 137 of the Philippine Commission incorporated
this town into the newly created Rizal Province on 11 June 1901.
In 1903, the Philippine Commission
"in line with
the policy of economy and centralization " as opposed to today's
policy of decentralization enacted Act No. 942 which
consolidated the Municipalities of San Mateo and Montalban, with the seat of government at San Mateo.
Executive Order No. 20, dated February 29, 1908 separated
Montalban from San Mateo, thus formalizing the latter's
status as an independent municipality.
1571 - 1572
||San Mateo is discovered as
a town annexed to Pasig.
||A pitched battle rages between Chinese rebels on one hand, and
between Spanish and native troops on the other. The Chinese are
defeated and retreated east to the Sierra Madre
May 16, 1687
territory and convent of San Mateo are added to Pasig by the
||Jesuit priests formally replace the
Augustinian priests who have evangelical
mission in San Mateo as early as 1637. They have brought the
image of the Virgin Mary that comes from
the town of Aranzazu, Nueva Vizcaya, Spain.
||Fr. Juan Echazabal, a Jesuit priest starts the devotion to our Lady of
Aranzazu from Spain and changes
the patron of the town from St. Matthew
to Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu.
||Donato Sulit is appointed as the first resident Governadorcillo of San Mateo.
April 27, 1871
Mateo initially with its large size is dismembered when Captain
General Isquierdo issued a decree separating the barrios of Balite,
Burgos, Marang and Calipahan from San Mateo and these are formed
into the new municipality of Montalban .
||Ismael Amado Jr. presides over San Mateo as its last Governadorcillo. He incidentally continues
serving up to 1905 even after the establishment of the Civil
Government under the American Regime in 1901 when he was appointed
Kapitan Municipal by the Military Governor of the United States
||General Llanera of the Filipino forces make San Mateo his
headquarters during the revolution against the Spanish
August 6, 1898
||San Mateo joins the revolutionary government of Gen. Emilio
||Gen. Licerio Geronimo’s guerilla bands from the
foothills of San Mateo and Montalban attack the American troops during the Philippine-American War.
June 11, 1901
Mateo is incorporated into the newly created province of Rizal through the Philippine Commission Act No.
137 during the American Occupation.
||Act No. 942 of the Philippine Commission enacts the
consolidation of the municipalities of San Mateo and Montalban with San Mateo serving as the seat of government in
line with its policy of fiscal economy and centralized
||Lucas Santiago serves San Mateo as its first mayor.
February 29, 1908
||San Mateo becomes an independent municipality under Executive
Order No. 20 which separates San Mateo and Montalban .
June 25, 1983
||The Catholic Church of San Mateo began to be comprised by the
newly-established Roman Catholic Diocese of
||San Mateo soars from being a fourth class municipality
in 1993 to a first
class municipality under the term (1992-2001) of mayor
Crispin "AMO" Santos.
1997 - 1999
Mateo bags the title of "The Cleanest and Greenest
Municipality" of Rizal.
||Filinvest Land Incorporated (FLI) initiates
shaping of the high life at Timberland
Heights with the formal launching of this premier
mountain resort town, initially offering Mandala Residential Farm
Estates 1. It is nestled above the mountains of San Mateo.
Parish of Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu is proclaimed as a
Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Aranzazu by the
Vatican, being the only church in the Philippines under the title of Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu and
only sister-parish of the Basilica of Aranzazu in Spain.
||The Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Aranzazu is canonically
||San Mateo reaches population of over
August 11, 2007
||Budgetlane Sulitmarket, a member of Philippine
Amalgamated Supermarkets Association Incorporated (PAGASA Inc.),
opens to the public. It is located along Gen. Luna
Avenue in Barangay Ampid 1.
||San Mateo achieves the record of "longest parade of
kakanin" in its history.
December 19, 2008
San Mateo opens with the inauguration of Rizal governor Dr.
Casimiro 'Jun' Ynares III, San Mateo's government officials lead by
mayor Jose 'Paeng' Diaz, the officials of Puregold,
and its main celebrity endorser Boy
Abunda. Other TV personalities and rock band also
performed in the late afternoon for the grand opening and
celebration. It is strategically located along the intersection of
Gen. Luna Avenue and Batasan-San Mateo Road in Barangay
The town lies on a valley called the Marikina Valley. The Marikina River runs through the western
portion of the municipality, while Nangka River runs through the
south, bounded by Marikina
San Mateo has lush trees in other high
There are 15 barangays
in San Mateo.
||District of Rizal
||Population (2007 Census)
||2007 Population Density (/km²)
Dulong Bayan 1
Dulong Bayan 2
Guitnang Bayan 1
Guitnang Bayan 2
The Town Seal
The seal of the town of San Mateo shows “Bayan ng San Mateo”
written on a white ribbon at the upper portion of the seal. The
white ribbon symbolizes cleanliness and pure intention of the local
government for its constituents.
The 15 small stars in the upper border represent the 15 barangays
that comprise the town of San Mateo. The Sun's rays represent
liberty and freedom and the eight (8) provinces where San Mateo
3 big stars are for Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
The colors red, white and blue represent
the three colors of the National flag.
The field of the seal is the blue color, which is attributed to
royalty, the ruling hierarchy, and is the official color of the
At the center of the seal are four important symbols, which
manifest the primary aims of the local government (i.e. health,
justice, education, and livelihood).
These are some of the notable events in San Mateo:
||Place of Event
Ampid Fiesta: Sombrero and Walis Festival
Kawan Holiday (Kab Scout of the Phil.)
July 21 and 22
All of public schools in San Mateo
San Mateo Festival: Parada ng Kakanin
San Mateo Plaza and San Mateo Municipal Hall Stage
Guitnang Bayan: Parada ng kakanin
Nuestra Señora De Aranzazu Church
Dulong Bayan Feast
Dulong Bayan Chapel
Barbara Villas 2 (SBV2) Fiesta
Barbara Villas 2
Image:Diocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu.jpg |
Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Aranzazu
Image:San Mateo Municipal Hall.jpg |
San Mateo Municipal Hall
Image:Plaza Natividad.jpg |
- Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Aranzazu (Nuestra Señora
The industrial establishments found in San Mateo are classified as
light to medium industries
shops and motor
are among the predominant industries
found within the municipality. Other
industrial establishments are relatively small scale, like leather
craft and kiskisan
. Moreover, agri-business establishments
which include poultry
do exist within the municipality.
Various products are being manufactured in San Mateo. In fact, a
group of different factories
along Kambal Road, Barangay Guitnang Bayan 2. This includes SM
Rubber, Jolly Food Corp., First Win Corp., and Evans factory. A
warehouse is also situated at
Patiis Road corner GSIS Street (Daang Tubo) in Barangay Dulong
Bayan 2. San Mateo also primarily manufactures gravel
together with other construction supplies that are found in
hardwares distributed all over the municipality.
Commerce and Trade
The Central Business District is strategically located amidst the
concentration of settlements. A major commercial area starts from the
vicinity of the public market, bounded by the national road going
and Street of Daang Bakal in Barangay Guitnang
This commercial zone is a conglomeration of
financial institutions, a public market, restaurants/small
eateries, retail stores and the like.
Another area, which may be considered as major commercial area, is
within the vicinity of De los Santos Street corner Gen. Luna
, in Barangay Ampid 1. Other commercial areas extending to St.
Mattheus Medical Hospital near the boundary of San Mateo and
City are located near Puregold San Mateo (formerly the
Producer’s Market) at Barangay Banaba and another at the corner of
Patiis Road and Gen.
, in Barangay
San Mateo has many bank branches like Metrobank
, Premiere Bank
, Mechants Bank,
Banco San Juan
, Marikina Valley-San
Mateo (MVSM) Bank, Bank
of the Philippine Islands
, RCBC Savings Bank
Banco Rodriguez and the Real Bank (a thrift bank). Many ATM
machines in San Mateo are provided with security system such as
anti-crime alarms. Security guards are also monitoring the premises
of the banks in San Mateo for the safety of the customers.
Utilities and Communications
Power services in the town are provided by the Manila Electric Company, Inc.
, except in the mountain barangay of Pintong
Bukawe. There were 23,189 customers in San Mateo as of March 1999.
Of these, 27,115 or 95.37 percent residential customers while
commercial, industrial and streetlights number 971 (4.19 percent),
36 (0.15 percent), and 67 (0.29 percent), respectively. The
municipality of San Mateo had a total demand of 55,355
megawatt-hours in 1998.
The main source of the municipality’s water supply are deep wells,
pump wells (operated by Manila Water
open wells, springs and other ground
resources. Some of the elevated parts of the municipality
are under watershed
since the topography is characterized by rolling to mountainous
From 0.65%, San Mateo's water sanitation
reached 100% on 2006 through the operation of Manila Water
North Manila Septage Treatment Plant
Completed and started operating on May 2007, the Manila Water
North Septage Treatment Plant is
located in Barangay Guitnang Bayan 2. This treats 586 cubic meters
of septage a day.
Sto. Niño-Silangan Water
About 42,000 residents are expected to benefit from continuous
water supply once Manila Water’s
water supply project in San Mateo, Rizal gets completed.
The project, dubbed as Sto. Niño-Silangan Water Supply Project, is
divided into two phases: Phase 1, which will serve barangays Gulod
Malaya, Sto. Niño and portion of Silangan, and Phase 2,
which will serve the whole of Silangan and the elevated areas of
Parang in Marikina.
The project involves the construction of pumping station and
reservoirs and the laying of 25 kilometers of water lines including
mainlines and will benefit twelve existing subdivisions occupying a
total land area of 27 hectares.
Started in October 2007, the water project is expected to provide
ample water supply to meet the 15 to 20 million liters per day
(MLD) demand of the more than 13,000 households in the area.
Telecommunications serve as a major link, within the sub-sectors
and among other sectors of the economy, in the population centers
and hinterlands. It also serves as a catalyst for growth and
development. Telephone (Fixed landline & Wireless), & DSL
Broadband Internet services are being provided by the Philippines
Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT
PT&T and Digital
. While cellular phone services
are provide by Globe Telecom
, Smart Communications
, and Sun Cellular
San Mateo Sanitary Landfill
In 2008, a proposal to build a 200-hectare sanitary landfill
within the jurisdiction of two barangays
was met with resistance by several environmental groups. The
was to be constructed on
ground area within a protected forest.
Bucking opposition by environment activists, the operator of the
San Mateo waste dump is ready to give it a go. Andy Santiago,
president of the San Mateo Sanitary Landfill and Development Corp.,
said it has given the green light for the 19-hectare facility in
province to do
San Mateo is also known to be home of several residential areas
including middle to high end real estate
villages and subdivisions.
San Mateo has a variety of conveyances that provide the residents
with ready means of transportation. These are public utility
jeepneys, buses, tricycles, pedicabs and even airconditioned
Tamaraw FX taxis are operating in the town. These facilitate the
movement of people and goods to Metro Manila and nearby towns of Rizal.
three jeepney terminals in San Mateo, one at San Mateo-Rodriguez Boundary, Maly, one at Modesta Village, Barangay
Sto Niño, and another at Tierra Monte, Barangay Silangan,
Transportation routes passing San Mateo, are Montalban-Cubao
(jeepneys), San Mateo-Cubao (jeepneys), Marikina-San Mateo
(jeepneys), and Commonwealth, QC-San Mateo (jeepneys) thru the San
Mateo-Batasan Bridge . These routes traverses Quezon City, Marikina
City, San Mateo and Rodriguez
Jeepneys are the most common form of transportation within the
municipality because of its convenience and low fare as compared to
other forms of transportation. Other modes are tricycles and
pedicabs which are used mainly to transport people and goods where
regular jeepney routes are not available.
The Marikina Auto Line Transport Corporation (MALTC) buses are the
public utility buses that mainly operate in San Mateo. They are
ordinary-type buses which provide safe travel to passengers.
some private buses that transport people who work at the Fortune
Tobacco Plant and other nearby factories in Marikina City.
Sign of Timberland Heights
A View of San Mateo and Metro Manila from the Mountains of
San Mateo in Timberland Heights
Bright Sky at Timberland Heights
9 Waves Resort Wave Pool
9 Waves Resort Kiddie Pool
Green Nature Resort
Manahan Building in Barangay Ampid 1
De Los Santos Street Junction
Timberland Sports and Nature Club as seen from Barangay
Dulong Bayan 2
Monterey Hills Subdivision, Barangay Silangan
OLOPS Ville, Barangay Gulod Malaya
Barbara Villas 2, Barangay Silangan
These are San Mateo's sister cities or municipalities with strong
relationship and partnership.
- The Peak Life, December 2007 Issue. A Publication of Timberland
- Jorge C. Mateo. October 23, 2007. "Metropolitan Waterworks and
Sewerage System (MWSS) Regulatory Office". 
- August 22, 2007. "DENR Updates"
- July 1, 2008. "P320-M water supply project in San Mateo, Rizal
now underway". Manila Water
- DJ Yap. January 10, 2009. "Plan to Build New San Mateo Landfill
Hit". Philippine Daily Inquirer
- Gigi Muoz David and Erika Z. Vizcarra. February 2, 2009. "San
Mateo Dump gets the Green Light". Manila Standard Today