11:56 PM (Manila Time)
Date: Jan. 20, 2003
By Jerome Aning
Inquirer News Service
groups have asked the Department of Environment and Natural
Resources to declare Arroceros Forest Park a bird sanctuary
in a bid to prevent the Manila city government from constructing
a building for teachers on the site.
watcher Mike Lu said the park is the only bird site in Manila,
adding that his group had spotted seven bird species, which
have made the park their home.
the park a bird sanctuary would also require that the park
be left undisturbed.
another move by other environment and conservationist groups
determined to block construction on the park, the National
Historical Institute was asked to declare the Arroceros Forest
Park historical and forbid any construction on the site.
and historical researcher Tina Testa said her group has asked
the NHI to declare the park historical since it is part of
the Parian, which is the site of Manila's first Chinese community
and trading center.
the Parian already existed in the area even before the Spaniards
explained that Arroceros got its name from the portion of
the Pasig's riverbank where grain merchants from provinces
unloaded rice for distribution. Arroz is rice in Spanish,
year, the NHI declared the nearby Mehan Gardens a national
historical landmark because it was the site of the Parian
and the city's first botanical garden.
Winner Foundation, the park's developer, have asked the help
of environment and conservationist groups to stop the city
government from building on Arroceros Park.
week, Atienza said that City Hall is determined to construct
a teachers' building despite Winner's opposition.
president Regina Roces-Paterno said the 15-year development
the park expires in 2013. She said the 3,500 trees on the
park would not be able to stand full public opening and the
construction of a building at this time.She said the development
of the park is only in the second phase (2002-2007), which
provides for the park's partial opening to the public and
secondary planting to protect it from erosion.
insistence to build on the park is based on his contention
that it was bought for 65 million pesos using the city's special
education fund. He said it is just fair that the teachers
benefit from it.