More time needed for Baguio market development

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BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan admitted that it will take the developer a longer period of time to implement the planned rehabilitation of the city public market as it has to adhere to the existing processes prescribed by prevailing laws, rules and regulations and the consultations with the affected stakeholders.

The local chief executive pointed out that what is being awaited is the final ruling of the Supreme Court (SC) on the motion for reconsideration filed by the concerned groups of market vendors that questioned an earlier ruling by the High Court upholding the constitutionality of Ordinance No. 38, series of 1995 prescribing the guidelines for the development of the city public market and the validity of the market development contract that emanated from the local legislative measure.

“Earlier, the management of Uniwide Realty Sales and Resources Development Corporation signified its intention to pursue the development of the city public market pursuant to its 20-year old contract as the company has some partners to bankroll the implementation of the project.

The company also assured its willingness to submit to the city government the revised plans and programs of work in order for the structure to be built will be compliant to the prevailing situation.

“The market development plan has to go to a tedious process pursuant to existing guidelines, rules and regulations. It is not true that we are rushing the said project as the revised plans and programs of work will have to pass the scrutiny of the city council and that the city will also be consulting with the affected stakeholders on how the development will be undertaken,” Domogan stressed.

It can be recalled that the market development plan emanated from the Baguio Market Vendors Association (BAMARVA) through Resolution No. 1, series of 1993.  Further, the BAMARVA submitted to the city government Resolution No. 2, series of 1993 submitting their conceptual development plan for the city market that served as the basis of the city council in passing the ordinance that prescribed the guidelines for the market development.

Prior to the scheduled bidding process, Domogan cited city officials reached out to the group of market vendors and encouraged them to organize a cooperative or corporation which should have been the partner of the city in the implementation of the market development plan but the schedule of the bidding came and there was no group f vendors that participated in the bidding, thus, the award of the project to Uniwide sometime in August 1996.

The market development contract was questioned before the Regional Trial Court (RTC which declared the constitutionality of the ordinance and the contract until the SC rendered a decision upholding the RTC ruling which favoured the city government.

Aside from the review of the plans and programs of work, he cited the developer is first obligated to build the relocation site of vendors within the Slaughterhouse Compound before starting the project by phases but it will still depend on the outcome of the consultations with the vendors and the approval of the council on the plans.

By Dexter A. See

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