BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan emphasized that the proposed put up of multi-level parking structures in designated parking areas in portions of the 34-hectare Burnham Park complex is geared towards effectively and efficiently addressing the current problems of the local government on the lack of sufficient parking spaces around the central business district area.
Domogan claimed that the stand of Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat against the put up of multi-level parking structures within Burnham Park is a product of the alleged wrong information that had been reaching her office that is why it is best for the concerned local officials to clarify the matter with her.
He asserted that the existing parking areas at the old city auditorium and the Ganza areas have been designated as parking areas for a long period of time.
“The plan of the local government in the old city auditorium and Ganza areas is to put up a multi-level green parking structure capable of accommodating more motor vehicles so that the implementation of no-parking along major streets within the park will be realized as part of the efforts to help reduce air pollutants in the park,” Domogan stressed.
He explained the put up of multi-level parking structures in the designated parking areas within the park will help in easing the parking woes of motorists and generate additional income to augment the city’s resources being infused for the overall operation, administration and management of the park.
“We should understand that the local government is now heavily subsidizing the operation, management and administration of Burnham Park because the income generated from the existing concessionaires in the different parts of the park is not actually sufficient to defray the annual budget required to sustain the park’s operation, thus, the local government is using other sources of revenues just to guarantee that the park will be in shape,” Domogan stressed.
He disclosed that the annual income generated by the local government from the existing concessionaires is around P12 to P18 million while the city is spending some P35 to P40 million just to maintain, operate and administer the park with least infrastructure development.
Previously, the tourism department had been providing an annual subsidy to the local government for the operation, administration and maintenance of the park but the same was eventually scrapped that left the city to solely produce the funds required for the maintenance of the decent state of the premier tourist destination.
According to him, the proposed design of the multi-level parking structure to be built in the lot of the old city auditorium will involve the so-called green architecture pursuant to the efforts of the local government to incorporate green engineering to the designs of structures that will be built in the city.
He remains optimistic that Secretary Puyat will clearly understand the issues and concerns of the local government relative to the operation, administration and maintenance of the park so that whatever her misgivings about the implementation of proposed developments inside the park will be effectively and efficiently addressed by having a clear picture of the real situation in the park.
By Dexter A. See