A PROPOSED P1.2 billion Spark Samar Sports City complex is set to transform the Samar province into a world-class sports destination following the project’s groundbreaking ceremony at Barangay Lagundi, Catbalogan City, on Wednesday, July 20, 2022.

“Funded under General Appropriations Act 2022, this will soon be implemented and I assure you that there is a big fund for this project in the succeeding year,” said Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH)-Eastern Visayas Regional Director Allan Borromeo.

“The complex will be a center for sports development, culture and the arts, open to all Samarnon. We will need your support for the completion of this endeavor. Let us work together for the realization of the dreams of all our Samarnon athletes and artists,” added Governor Sharee Ann Tan.

According to the governor, Architect William Ti, Jr. of WTA Architecture and Design Studio “delivered a top-notch design that complimented our Spark Samar Development Agenda, adding special elements from around the province that fit well into our plans.”

DPWH-Eastern Visayas disclosed that the project has an initial allocation of 1P80 million for its first phase, which includes the construction of its foundation and initial structures.

“We will work hand in hand with both provincial and city government to realize this project,” said Borromeo in a statement.

This multi-year project is located on a 16-hectare land in the said barangay and will feature an 8,100-seating capacity stadium complex.

It will also house different outdoor and indoor sports, a museum, a business process outsourcing (BPO) campus, a commercial strip, hyper courts, a football and track field, an amphitheater, a skatepark, and even a hotel and residential subdivision.

“The Spark Samar Sports City project aims to spur economic development in Catbalogan City through hosting and featuring major sports events like Palarong Pambansa. The sports complex is also expected to be the main and spacious avenue for festivals and other celebrations that will highlight the diverse culture of Samar province,” Borromeo said.

“The concept integrates public amenities and facilities that address a bigger spectrum of social, cultural, and economic development objectives for the community,” the WTA Architecture and Design Studio added.

Meanwhile, Tan said they started researching the possibility of a sports complex in Samar more than three years ago.

“Studies were made as well consultations with various architectural firms to ensure that we find the right partner who can execute our vision for the perfect stadium,” the Samar governor said.

The ground groundbreaking ceremony was also attended by Samar 2nd District Representative Reynolds Michael Tan, Vice Governor Arnold Tan, Architect William T. Ti of WTA Architecture and Design Studio, provincial and city officials, and other DPWH-Eastern Visayas officials. (SunStar Philippines)