DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 26 June) – The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) will collaborate with the City Government of Davao to transform the Kadayawan tribal village into a “hub for culture and peace,” a move that seeks to revive the Magsaysay Park.
City Tourism Office head Generose Tecson said in an interview on Tuesday that the NCCA expressed intention to help the city improve the park by providing the necessary infrastructures while the local government plans to develop the existing cultural village, which was opened during Kadayawan celebration last year, to showcase the 11 different houses of the six Moro tribes (Taosug, Maguindanaon, Iranun, Kagan, Maranao, and Sama) and five Lumad tribes (Klata, Ata, Ubo Manuvo, Matigsalog, and Tagabawa).
She added that among the plans include improving the setup of tribal houses and developing the old abandoned amphitheater inside the park by putting a ceiling to host indoor activities such as cultural performances, dance contests such as hip-hop, and events of the artists.
“There is a place for cultural village and the (amphitheater) to encourage artists to make it a place for themselves, more like artists’ haven,” she said.
Tecson awaits plans from the City Engineering Office and City Architecture’s Office for the structural design and concept before she can complete the proposal for development of Magsaysay Park to NCAA for a P5-million grant.
She said they expect the project to begin this year.
The Magsaysay Park currently houses some of the government offices such as the Davao City field offices of the Commission on Elections, Davao City Investment Promotions Center, and Philippine Veterans Affairs Office.
Tecson added they also hope to complete the transfer of all the tents of the P10-million Asian Fruit Market from Abreeza Mall to the Sta. Ana wharf in two months.
It is being envisioned to become a “food park, souvenir shop and waiting area for tourists bound for the islands” upon its opening initially targeted in time for the Kadayawan festival this year.
She said the facility will provide a waiting area for island hoppers.
She said a P2-million budget has been approved by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority for its transfer.
The city will remove the transient houses and stores inside the park and will be replaced with food stalls, she said.
“What we want to happen, it is going to be a people’s place, a space for all of us to go to,” she said. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)