Baguio completes plan for southwestern growth corridor

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The city completed the comprehensive master development plan for the proposed southwestern growth corridor in the city to help decongest the central business district.

The proposed southwestern growth corridor will be located within the 10-hectare property at the Baguio Dairy Farm ceded by the agriculture department to the city government for its high impact development projects towards decongesting the city proper.

Arch. Donna R. Tabangin stated that the ceded property will host the Atab isolation center and district health center, the fire sub-station, the inter-modal terminal, the city’s modern abattoir and the relocation site for the city’s temporary waste transfer station.

Initially, the proposed Atab District Health Center will be funded with P20 million from the public works department to put up an isolation facility to be eventually converted into the Atab District Health Center to replace the present  building located along the road-right-of-way of the Sto. Tomas Road.

Further, the construction of the fire sub-station of the Baguio Fire Department will be funded by the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) which has an allocation for this purpose and the counterpart of the local government is the 500-square meter property where the structure will be built.

On the other hand, the city government will provide the more than P100 million required for the proposed city modern abattoir within a 1-hectare portion of the ceded property to be relocated from its present slaughterhouse located right at the central business district area.

However, the put up of the inter-modal terminal within a 5-hectare portion of the property will be implemented through the private public partnership (PPP) scheme enshrined under the city’s Public Private Partnership for the People (P4) ordinance with a lone proponent being evaluated by the P4 Selection Committee.

Aside from the aforesaid projects, the city government plans to relocate the existing waste transfer station to the western portion of the property upon the approval of concerned government agencies so that the area being proposed to serve as sites for the programmed projects could be maximized.

Tabangin pointed out that one of the important components of the site development at the southwestern growth corridor are buffer forests in vacant spaces to balance the conflicting facets of development in the area.

She claimed the proposal to put up buffer forests in vacant spaces was one of the recommendations of the agriculture department to help maintain the forest cover of some portions of the property.

On the other hand, the city government, through the City Social Welfare and Development Office, is also currently dealing with the informal settlers that have occupied some portions of the property for them to vacate the occupied areas once the city starts the implementation of the big-ticket projects in the area as they admitted that they actually do not own the land where their structures are built.

The 10-hectare area of the Baguio Dairy Farm is part of the 94-hectare property of the agriculture department reserved as part of the Baguio Animal Breeding and Research Center to help in the overall development of the agriculture sector in the Cordillera.

The inter-modal terminal will serve as the terminal for south-bound buses to decongest the Gov. Pack Road area from parked lowland-bound buses to free the road from the daily congestion once normal activities resume in the area. By Dexter A. See

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