Issue of September 10, 2017
     
NEWS
Benguet
Ifugao
Kalinga
Mt. Province
 
OPINION
 

69th Courier Anniversary Issue
 
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Proposals to address lack of parking space

This is the consensus of a number of civic and businessmen associations and citizens in the city. Some years back, two areas for possible parking spaces were identified in the city. If implemented, they could help solve the vehicular traffic and parking problems. These areas are the Slaughterhouse Compound and the City Camp Lagoon. The Slaughterhouse Compound and the City Camp Lagoon are now occupied by commercial and residential buildings and can no longer be converted into parking areas.

So may we respectfully propose the following alternative parking lots: The Bureau of Plant Industry and the Dairy Farm or Bureau of Animal Industry compounds. Both facilities were released from operation by the national government. The functions of the BPI should be transferred to Benguet State University which has the facilities and expertise to implement its projects and programs. The Dairy Farm could be transferred to a similar compound in Kabayan, Benguet, which is more appropriate for the industry.

There are still some areas in the City Camp Lagoon that can be converted into parking lots. There was also a proposal to construct a multi-story parking building at the former site of the City Auditorium, but the proposal did not push through.

According to information from contractors and real estate companies, all these projects can be constructed on “Build-Operate-Transfer contracts,” so the City of Baguio can be spared from expenses for the construction.

Other areas that could be developed to parking areas are the Happy Glen Park. Without compromising the existing government structures, the perimeter could be developed to accommodate vehicular parking.

Likewise, the former entrance of the Camp John Hay in front of the Nevada Square and the Panagbenga Park could also be developed into a parking area.

The former PNR Compound at the Utility Road which has not been used for a number of years could also be developed as a parking area.

We propose that if the BPI and Dairy Farm will be developed into parking areas, a number of coasters or mini buses should be franchised to service tourists and visitors from these parking areas and bring them to designated tourist places. The bus service will start at intervals of 10 to 15 minutes. Since the buses will not pick up passengers, they will use side streets to reach their destinations and will not use main streets. They could start at Camp John Hay, Mines View, Wright Park, Baguio Cathedral, SM, Malcolm Square, Burnham Park and proceed to Dairy Farm and BPI. Another bus line could also start from the BPI. This system could be a “win-win” solution to some of our parking and traffic problems.

The tourists and visitors will be happy to pay a minimal fee for the shuttle system. They can easily visit the tourist spots in the city without the hassle of bringing their vehicles.

The proposed project can be offered to private companies on a “Build-Operate-Transfer” contract and can be tracked because it will not be funded by the government.

We hope that the proposals will be given serious consideration and can be implemented as soon as possible if proven feasible.

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