CEPMO told to set guidelines on the operation of businesses at the Botanical Garden


Amid water shortages experienced in different parts of the city, the Baguio Water District (BWD)
has recommended to the city officials the collection of additional environmental fees from tourists in order to fund the construction of additional rainwater harvesting facilities. During the Baguio City Council’s regular session last June 26, Engr. Salvador Royeca, BWD General Manager, said
the demand for water in the city increases more than 20% during the peak season where there is
an influx of tourists.

This period also turns out to be the driest period in the country where supply of water is low. To close the gap between the demand and supply, Royeca said one of the solutions is the construction of an additional rain water harvesting facility which can be funded through the collection of environmental fees from tourists. According to Royeca, 20% of the tourists stay in commercial establishments like hotels and inns while the 80% stay in residential areas.

Royeca said the problematic areas in the city are Pinsao Proper, part of Fairview, part of Campo Filipino, Pinget, West Quirino Hill, part of Middle Quirino Hill, part of East Quirino Hill, part of San Luis Village, Upper Quezon Hill. These areas had experienced water shortages as a result of the decline in water sources primarily due to the absence of sufficient rain to recharge the aquifers.
To improve the water supply in these problematic areas, an augmentation project was implemented which included the activation of a transmission line from old Lucban to Pinsao Area and the
newly-commissioned Malvar 2 Deepwell along Malvar St.

As an effect of the El Nino phenomenon, the reservoir along Km 8 has dried up, affecting the water supply in Apugan, Adiwang, Dontogan, PNB Ville, Poblacion (Tuba), Suello Village, Crystal Cave,
Teachers Village (ATAB), Marcos Highway, Chapiz, Upper Rock Quarry, Sto. Rosario, Imelda Barangay, San Vicente, Dr. Carino, Montinal, General Lim, QM, and Bengao (Bakakeng Central), among others. To remedy this, repiping, bypassing and rehabilitation projects were likewise
undertaken to boost water supply in areas near Baguio General Hospital.

Royeca further recommended that the carrying capacity of the city be considered in the future
programs and projects of the city government. This recommendation concurs with the study conducted by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) which showed that the
city’s environmental carrying capacity has long been breached due to the unabated increase of population through the decades. Meanwhile, the city council has called on the City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO) to come up with guidelines on the operation of businesses at the Botanical Garden.

The parks management authority is tasked to formulate and review policies and guidelines for the management of the parks and recreation areas in the city and coordinate the planning and preparation of the overall concept and master plans of all parks and recreation areas in the city.
This developed after complaints by concessionaires at the park against Lawrence Mendoza, also a tenant at the Botanical Garden, for his “noncompliance” and “unethical business practices.”
The concessionaires alleged that Mendoza had put up new stalls at the View Deck and rented them out without the approval of the city government.


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