City closes various roads for 2022 Panagbenga events

City closes various roads for 2022 Panagbenga events

City officials approved the temporary closure and use of various roads in the city as venues for the programs and activities lined up for the 2022 Panagbenga or the Baguio flower festival subject to clarifications and future amendments.

Under Ordinance No. 19, series of 2022, Session Road from SM rotunda to the area in front of Mercury Drug, both lanes, will be closed to vehicular traffic from March 20 to midnight of March 27, 2022 for the conduct of the simplified Session road in Bloom.

Further, from March 20 to midnight of March 27, 2022, portion of the adjoining roads and streets of Session road such as Gov. Pack road, Assumption |road, Fr. Carlo Loop, Calderon St., Perfecto St. and Mabini St. will also be closed for main stage, emergency ingress and egress and for garbage collection trucks, for emergency ingress or egress for delivery trucks, vans of pavilion owners and for garbage trucks among others.

In the case of Mabini St., the ordinance stated that it will remain open for vehicular traffic to serve as an alternate road for motorists wanting to patronize the displays by the exhibitors in the Session road in Bloom.

Earlier, the Panagbenga Organizing Committee requested the local legislative body for the temporary closure and use of various roads in the central business district area as venues for the different programs and activities lined up for the celebration of this year’s Panagbenga on various dates.

Under Republic Act (RA) 7160 or the Local Government Code of the Philippines, the local legislative body is empowered to close the roads and streets in their respective areas of jurisdiction to be used for various programs and activities of the local government when the duration is more than 7 days.

Based on the data from the Panagbenga Organizing Committee, more or less 200 stalls will be allowed to operate during the week-long Session road compared to the previous 500 stalls that occupy the whole stretch of the city’s main thoroughfare.

Organizers of the annual celebration of Panagbenga and the local government recently agreed to tone down the events for this year’s festivities as part of the ongoing gradual and safe revival of the heavily impacted local economy primarily because of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID) 2019 pandemic over the past 2 years.

Aside from the traditional opening ritual that was held at the Panagbenga Park along South Drive, other activities that had been lined up for this year’s Baguio flower festival include opening of the Panagbenga landscaping competition or Gardenscapes by participating landscapers, landscaping exhibition, Handog ng Panagbenga sa Pamilya Baguio, Let A Thousand Flowers Bloom, kite flying contest, fitness activities, band performances, Panagbenga Dance Competition, Session road in Bloom, Panagbenga flower Tee Golf tournament and the closing fireworks display.

Panagbenga is the city’s annual crowd drawing event that serves as the city’s primer tourism event that entices foreign and domestic visitors to visit the Summer Capital at the time when flowers produced by cut flower farmers in nearby towns of Benguet are in bloom as flowers are one of the primary produce of farmers in nearby Benguet. – Dexter A. See