Reinvigorated, not rehabilitate, Baguio

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BAGUIO CITY – A number of awardees of the Search for Outstanding Citizens of Baguio (SOCOB) are suggesting to the city government to use the term reinvigorating Baguio instead of rehabilitating the city considering that the latter connotes a negative condition of the city and unfair to the achievements of previous administrations.

Councilor Betty Lourdes F. Tabanda, a previous SOCOB awardee, pointed out the use of the term rehabilitation connotes decay in the current state of the city which is not the case, thus, the best term to use to describe the implementation of various development projects by the present administration is to reinvigorate Baguio to make it better.

She stated that the current state of Baguio City is already good and what needs to be done is to make it better through the proposed big-ticket projects thus reinvigorating the city and making the same much better in recognition of the accomplishments achieved by previous administrations of the city government.

Raffy Chan, an architect 2004 SOCOB awardee, asserted that concerned government agencies and the city government need to revisit and reconstitute existing polices, rules and regulations governing the construction of high rise buildings because the proposed moratorium on the put-up of high rise structures is in violation of the rights of the people over their properties as enshrined in the Civil Code of the Philippines.

He added that legitimate property owners have inherent rights over their properties that is why imposing a moratorium on the same is a legal question and that the proposed length of the proposed moratorium is also too long.

Chan asserted it seems the prevailing problem in the city is due to inconsistencies in the rules thus the city government must revisit and reconstitute the rules and align the same with the present thrusts of the current administration instead of punishing private property owners by prohibiting them from introducing the appropriate development in their properties pursuant to established regulations.

The architect, who was previously recognized as an APEC and ASEAN architect, disclosed that professionals and ordinary citizens who work to earn a living in the city should not be made to suffer the problems on inconsistent rules and regulations considering they are contributing to the overall development of the city thus problematic rules should be stricken out and not the people simply earning a living for their families.

Raquel Verzosa, a SOCOB awardee last year, said there is always room for improvement in the city and programs, projects and activities that will contribute in uplifting the current state of the city will be a welcome development and Baguio should not be exempted from sustaining the growth and development achieved over the past several decades.

She stipulated that priority development projects to be implemented by concerned government agencies and the city government will be welcomed by the people, provided that these can improve the current state of the city’s environment and the living condition of the people in the different barangays.

By Hent
Photo by Armando M. Bolislis