Mayor Not Against Declaration of Historical Sites in the City
May 16, 2015
BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio Domogan is looking forward to have a clearer and more precise historical sites declaration in this mountain resort.
The city government here is currently dealing with two issues involving the historical sites being declared by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).
Recently, Burnham Park was declared as a national heritage site aside for the on-going improvement of the city hall grounds.
Domogan stressed and reiterated that the city government does not oppose the declaration of heritage sites, however decries that the city hall was kept in dark and needs to be enlightened.
He disclosed during his weekly forum that in a letter dated May 6 of the NHCP, they said that the city hall and areas surrounding the building such as the parking and flagpole areas are included in the building landscape and therefore form part of the city hall. Also, city hall bears an NHCP marker thus signifying the same that it is a heritage and historical building.
Dr. Maria Serena Diokno of the NHCP stressed that the fencing and improvement of the city hall grounds would be acceptable provided that they do not obstruct the view and prominence of the structure and enhance the overall architectural integrity of the site.
Meanwhile, since the city is still planning to have an off-street parking facility at Melvin Jones, NHCP requested for a copy of plan and development of burnham park for the NHCP’s approval.
In response to the said letter, Domogan assured that the on-going city hall improvement will not in any way cause obstruction of the view but instead enhance and improve the city hall grounds and at the same time protecting and securing the safety of city hall.
On the other hand, Domogan recently formed a TWG to evaluate the possibility of developing an off-street parking area at Melvin Jones.
“We are not opposing the declaration of historical sites in the city, but we have to follow what is required under Republic Act 10066,” said Domogan.
“The City Hall building was declared under the old law. However, under R.A. 10066, the city government did not comply with the requisites in declaring the city hall building as historical site because there was no public hearing and there was no resolution of the city government for the declaration of the city hall building,” added the mayor.
For the meantime, the city council invited representative of the NHCP, National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-CAR) on May 18 to shed light relative the on-going construction project at the city hall./Jho Arranz