Burnham pedestrianization pushed

LOCAL architect Raffy Chan has proposed to pedestrianize Burnham Park.

Chan, who leads R.G Chan and Associates, submitted a P740-million five-story building plan at the old auditorium as an answer to lessen pollution and decongest Baguio City's traffic.

Chan's proposal, dubbed as the "Green Park Project," boasts of a rainwater harvest facility, solar panels, green roofs, a Materials Recovery Facility, BERDE accreditation, parking for 890 cars, and a 6,000-square-meter space available for commercial use.

"I am a Baguio boy and I felt a need for me to come forward," Chan said, adding the proposal is based on what is currently needed by the city, seeing first-hand its obstacles.

Chan proposed three scenarios at Bunham Park if and when his proposal is chosen: a partial closure of the park to traffic, a full closure of the park to traffic, or maintain the status quo the city is adapting today.

Chan said there are now over 600 cars parked at Burnham and the parking facility will rid the park of vehicles, making it a green zone, allowing pollution to lessen and people to walk.

During the second public consultation for the Burnham Park parking structure, Chan countered the P800-million proposal of Alexander Cruz, chairman of XRC Mall Developer Incorporated, for a multi-level parking that can accommodate 500 cars and 15 tourist buses, commercial mall with a pasalubong center and at least a 100-room hotel.

Councilor Edgar Avila, committee chair for urban planning, lands and housing, convened talks with the committee on public works headed by Councilor Mylen Yaranon and the committee on traffic and transport legislation led by Councilor Benny Bomogao on the multi-level parking facility at Burnham Park, specifically at the old auditorium grounds.

The consultations will discuss a parking facility and its design at the space of the old auditorium only in accordance to the University of the Cordilleras 2010 Burnham Master Development plan, which was donated to the City.
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