BAGUIO CITY – The city government will introduce public attractions along Session Road for people to totally enjoy the closure of its uphill stretch every Sunday.
Mayor Benjamin Magalong last week tasked the City Tourism and Special Events Office under City Tourism Operations Officer Aloysius Mapalo to come up with an activity plan for the whole duration of the traffic experiment at the city’s most popular and scenic road.
The traffic experiment which started last Aug. 18 and will run for six Sundays from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. was meant to cut air pollution at the heart of the central business district and encourage walking among the residents.
The first day of closure saw people promenading along the road where pocket activities were spontaneously conducted by some groups throughout the day.
Mapalo said they intend to encourage only simple activities such as busking, chalk art and similar and unstructured undertakings for Session Road.
“Nothing fancy, nothing structured is more like it,” he said.
On Sunday, Aug.25, Mayor Magalong said Session Road will be the venue for the Mindanao fruit festival which he coordinated with former agriculture secretary and now Mindanao Development Authority Chair Emmanuel Pinol.
The mayor on Aug. 23 issued Executive Order No. 66 allowing the conduct of the activity at the premiere street based on Article 45 of the Internal rules of Procedures of the Local Government Code which allowed temporary closure of any national or local road for the conduct of industrial and agricultural fairs.
The mayor said they arranged for the delivery of crates of Mindanao native fruits like durian, mangosteen, lanzones, pomelo and others to the city to be sold at bargain prices to the city’s licensed fruit dealers who in turn will resell them to the public along Session Road.
He said this will be a one-time activity intended to help local fruit dealers and consumers avail of Mindanao fruits at a low cost and at the same time also help Mindanao farmers market their produce.
He tasked Mapalo to take charge of the arrangements with the licensed fruit sellers from the city market and other legitimate groups.
Mapalo said as per agreement with representatives of the vendors groups, 30 fruit vending stations will be strategically put up along the stretch of the road to resell the goods to the public.
Netizens welcomed the rare opportunity to participate in the fruit festival and avail of the bargain-priced crops.
“As we go on, we hope that the activities will evolve into attractions that will entice people to enjoy Session Road to the hilt,” the mayor said./Aileen P. Refuerzo