BAGUIO CITY – Officials of the Cordillera office of the Department of Public works and Highways (DPWH-CAR) and the local government agreed to jointly prepare the overall rehabilitation plan of the city-owned Baguio Convention Center to start the initial facelift of the facility from the P180 million allocation from the 2018 annual budget of the public works department.
During a recent meeting, DPWH-CAR regional director Nerie D. Bueno and Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan agreed that the architects of the agency will work on the overall rehabilitation plan of the facility while the technical personnel from the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) and other interested designers, together with Councilor Maria Mylene Victoria G. Yaranon, who is an architect, will provide the necessary inputs from the local government so that by November, the plan is ready for the agency to know of the required funds needed for the facelift of the city-owned property.
Bueno said the P180 million allocated for the repair and rehabilitation of the Baguio Convention Center is just for the first phase of the project because the agency will continue appropriating amounts until the completion of the overall rehabilitation plan.
DPWH-CAR is scheduled to bid out the repair and rehabilitation of the city’s premier convention facility by December pursuant to its policy of bidding-out the project short of award until funds from the national government will be released early next year.
Bueno informed Mayor Domogan, Councilor Yaranon, City Building Official Engr. Nazita Banez and City Benguet Officer Leticia Clemente that DPWH authorities gave a special treatment in providing funds for the facelift of the Baguio Convention Center because of the city chief executive’s request for the agency’s help to improve the condition of its 42-year old convention facility.
Mayor Domogan emphasized the need for the technical personnel of the DPWH-CAR, the local government and interested designers to closely work together for the completion of the overall master development plan to avail of the initial funding provided by the agency specifically to be used for the repair and rehabilitation of the convention center.
While the repair and rehabilitation will be limited to the facility’s existing footprint, he claimed part of the overall plan that should be prepared must include provisions for underground parking, put up of the necessary rain harvesting facility, the re-designing of the main convention hall with possible mezzanine and the improvement of the electrical and plumbing systems among others to provide a modern convention facility for residents and visitors.
DPWH-CAR and local government technical personnel, including representatives from the private sector and the academe, initially started the ground work for the preparation of the overall rehabilitation plan of the city-owned property with the assessment of the structural integrity of the building before proceeding with the preparation of the design for the huge project that will be funded by the agency through a multi-year appropriation depending on the contents of the rehabilitation plan.
By Dexter A. See