Baguio Market development to be undertaken through public-private partnership


BAGUIO CITY– The city government announced the direction being considered for the proposed multi-billion re-development of the city’s public market is through the public-private partnership (PPP) scheme instead of acquiring loans from established government financial institutions to ensure the sustainable operation of the facility in the future.

Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong said despite the project undergoing the PPP scheme, it will still be the city government that will manage and operate the facility to ensure the interest of the existing vendors will be promoted and upheld.

He added the city is still awaiting the presentations of more prospective developers of the public market who earlier signified their intention to participate in the bid of the city to develop its market.

Earlier, SM prime holdings and Robinsons, two of the giant mall developers in the country, already presented their concepts on how to undertake the multi-billion market development project taking into consideration the recently approved architectural design of the said facility.

Among the options being considered by the city government in financing the project include the acquisition of a loan from government financial institutions, turn-key proposal, joint venture with established market developers and partnership with existing market cooperatives or modified joint venture.

The city chief executive claimed the city government is still awaiting the proposal of the different market cooperatives considering they reportedly committed to raise a certain amount to serve as their counterpart to the developer that will be identified by the city to push through with the long-overdue market development project.

In 1995, the city legislative body approved Ordinance No. 38, series of 1995, prescribing the guidelines, rules and regulations for the development of the city public market which resulted to the conduct of public bidding for the project and the subsequent award of the same to Uniwide Sales and Realty Resources Corporation.

However, disgruntled market vendors groups questioned the constitutionality of the ordinance and the validity of the award of the project to the aforesaid developer which dragged up to the Supreme Court over the past two decades eventually resulting in the dismissal of the case and the decision that the ordinance was constitutional and the market development contract was valid.

Under the initial terms of reference for the development of the city public market, the developable area of the market is approximately three hectares with a five-storey building with two basement levels for parking.

City officials asserted the immediate need to develop the public market as it is already left out by the other improved market facilities in neighboring first-class municipalities and component cities in the Luzon. PIO Baguio

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