08 June 2021 – The city identified three potential parking sites within the Burnham Park complex to address the parking problems within various portions of the city’s premier tourist destination and the central business district area.

Under the proposed Burnham Park master development plan, City Planning and Development Officer Arch. Donna R. Tabangin disclosed that the proposed parking areas in the complex will include the parking slots that will be designated under the Baguio City youth convergence center, below the Baguio tennis court which will be subject for upgrading and near the city creative center, aside from the site of the old city auditorium.

She claimed that the proposed parking areas will be able to accommodate a huge volume of motor vehicles, including public utility jeepneys (PUJs) and taxis, to put order in the parking problems in various portions of the park as the same will be in line with the proposed overall development of the tourist destination.

For his part, City Administrator Bonifacio dela Pena stated that it will be the local government that will fund the put up of the parking structure near the proposed creative center and the one that will be situated under the tennis court while the parking under the Baguio City youth convergence center will be jointly funded by the public works department and the city.

In the case of the parking structure that will be constructed in the site of the old city auditorium, he stipulated that the same will be offered for the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) and that adjustments are currently being worked out with the different offices of the local government to ensure the feasibility of the endeavor once the city will be able to tap its partner for the said project.

Earlier, several proponents have submitted offers for the put up of parking structures at the Ganza parking area and at the city orchidarium.

However, the city administrator stipulated that the proposed parking structure at the orchidarium will be transferred to the old city auditorium as part of the proposed creative center but additional stories are needed to ensure it is attractive to potential investors.

The city is currently finalizing the comprehensive master development plan for Burnham Park to be submitted to the State-owned Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) to support the future release of the P480 million earlier requested by the city government to upgrade some portions of the park.

The proposed rehabilitation and upgrading of Burnham Park were supposed to be implemented last year but the funds earlier earmarked for the project were realigned to Heal As One to mitigate the effects of the ongoing Corona Virus Disease (COVID) 2019 pandemic.

TIEZA officials assured city officials that the agency can raise the funds for the upgrading of Burnham Park once the ongoing restrictions on the movement of tourists in the country will be relaxed by the inter-agency task force for emerging infectious diseases. – Dexter A. See