NHI experts survey 7 Dagupan landmarks

A team of experts from the National Historical Institute (NHI) arrived in Dagupan City on September 1 to gain new insights and perspectives about the city by visiting its 7 historical landmarks.

 The NHI group, headed by supervisor for history research Lorelei Deviana and history researcher Maria Luisa Valerio, both architects, surveyed the 7 sites as jointly recommended by the Dagupan Heritage Commission and Metro Dagupan Culture and Arts Council (MDCAC).

 Priority in their list of landmarks was the home economics building at the West Central Elementary School which General Douglas MacArthur used as temporary headquarters after landing at the Lingayen Gulf, in fulfillment of the “I shall return” promise he had made before leaving the Philippines for Australia to spearhead Allied preparations for the liberation of the Philippines and other Asia-Pacific countries from the Japanese. Next on their priority list was the Gabaldon Schoolhouse, also found at the West Central.

 According to Nora G. Siapno, MDCAC chairman, the history experts were amazed upon seeing the century-old buildings still standing erect and even survived the devastating earthquake 16 years ago.

 ”This is a major boost in our tourism landscape. Dagupan will surely benefit from the institute’s much needed expertise – assisting the city executives educate its citizenry and stakeholders on heritage conservation and preservation,” Mayor Lim said during the group’s courtesy call on him at his City Hall office.

 Other landmarks they toured were the City Hall, PNR station, Spanish and American stations, ancestral house of the De Venecias in Tambac and the landing site of General MacArthur in Bonuan Gueset, which is now a subject of controversy due to a landowner’s claim of ownership of the vicinity.

 ”We should follow great cities of the world where preservation, conservation and restoration of old structures are high on their priority list. Tourism has earned these cities enormous sums of money,” stressed Carmen Prieto of the heritage commission.

 Before departing, the NHI group thanked the city government for its warm reception and hospitality.Leziel T. Cayabyab

1st national Luzon agribusiness meeting set August 17

A meeting on the First North Luzon Agribusiness Quadrangle will take place in Leisure Coast, Dagupan City on August 17.

Presidential management staff (PMS) director general and designated champion for the North Luzon Super Region Arthur C. Yap will preside in the said meeting. Yap, whose mother is a Dagupeña, was the former secretary of the Department of Agriculture.

The meeting aims to discuss with local government units the commitment of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to develop North Luzon as an agribusiness quadrangle as announced in her 2006 SONA and determine various areas of cooperation.

During the affair, various government agencies will report on the status of on-going programs in the Super Region as well as discuss measures to ensure their effective implementation.

Dagupan City Mayor Benjamin Lim along with the city officials and other local executives are expected to attend the meeting and participate in the discussion of agribusiness projects.

The one-day meeting will tackle farm-to-market road projects, irrigation projects, post harvest facility, energy projects, airport projects, seaport projects and road and expressway projects.

Mayor Lim is expected to bring up for discussion the proposed Bangus Processing Plant, the flagship agribusiness program of the city. (CIO/Leziel T. Cayabyab)

2 LGUs want to replicate city programs

Afterwards, the group proceeded to the material recovery facilities (MRFs) of Barangay IV and Barangay Herrero-Perez to observe their implementation of R.A. 9003 or the solid waste management act.

According to Renomeron, he plans to replicate in his municipality the city’s MRFs, butterfly garden and communal nursery after their visit to the two barangays.

 The group also toured the city’s major river systems in barangays Pantal and Calmay where city agriculturist Emma Molina discussed the zonification and regulation of fish pens and fish cages in the city.

 Moreover, Mayor Codilla expressed his interest in learning more about the city’s dredging and declogging operations to minimize the recurrent flooding in some areas of Ormoc City.

 City tourism OIC Dea Que, city agriculturist Emma Molina and waste management division chief Reggie Ubando served as tour guides.

 Before departing, the two mayors thanked the city government for the warm reception and hospitality extended to his group.

 At present, a total of eight lakbay-aral groups have visited Dagupan City this year alone. Others were Sasmuan, Pampanga; Pilar, Capiz; Santiago, Isabela; Zamboanga City; Lakewood, Zamboanga del Sur; and Bayog, Zamboanga del Sur. (Leziel T. Cayab