DUMAGUETE CITY – Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo and Silliman University President Ben Malayang III officially signed the Memorandum of Agreement that will pave the way for the development of an eco-park at Silliman University.
Both Mayor Remollo and President Malayang assure that once completed, the new facility will still be open to the public while fishing and other livelihood activities will also be permitted so that people will learn the value of maintaining the place for their economic well being.
City Tourism Officer Jacqueline Antonio and former DENR Secretary Dr. Angel Alcala served and signed on as witnesses.
Both officials also vowed to provide regulations in the use of the eco-park and the beach front so that even if it becomes a new tourist destination, it will not suffer the same fate as that of Boracay.
Councilors Lilani Ramon, Alan Gel Cordova, Karissa Tolentino, City Administrator Ricardo Gonzales Jr., Assistant City Administrator Dinno T. Depositario, City Legal Officer Doram Dumalagan, Dr. Hilconida Calumpong and Ms. Jane Belarmino, Vice-President for Development were also present during the ceremony.
The development of the area known as Silliman University Beach to and “Eco-Beach” is proposed as an extension of the SU-IEMS’ interpretive facility, Silliman University Beach is the only remaining public beach in Dumaguete City heavily used by residents and visitors , reaching 700 persons per weekends, for swimming relaxation, fishing, vending etc. As a result as much as 20 sacks of garbage are collected every week. The sea up to half a kilometer from shore is contaminated with coliform bacteria from humans and animals, from the Mojon Creek, the sewers from houses and huts.
There is barely any space left for strolling as the beach is littered with huts of vendors, tables, benches and boats.
The proposed Eco-Beach design mitigates the above-mentioned problems. It offers an information area and view decks, a boardwalk that extends into the half hectare mangrove garden of the institute, vendor’s huts and picnickers sheds, boat docking area, and a Fisher’s Cove where Bantayan fishers can mend their nets, fix their boats or vend their catch. The green and environment-friendly design was developed by Architecture students of the College of Engineering and Design building on the concepts of the faculty, staff and students of IEMS, with inputs from the wider SU community, the Local Government Unit of Dumaguete City and Barangay Bantayan.