December 7, 2022

The Department of Agriculture has granted the request of the city government of Baguio to add one hectare to the eight hectares of the Baguio Animal Breeding and Research Center (BABRC) previously ceded to the latter in 2019 for its various land needs.

Last Oct. 30, the Bureau of Animal Quarantine represented by Director Reildrin Morales and Mayor Benjamin Magalong signed a usufruct allowing the city government to use 100,000 square meters of the BABRC (formerly Dairy Farm) as transfer station, south-bound intermodal terminal, location of city government offices, abattoir, and other purposes that the city government may deem appropriate subject to approval of the DA as administrator of the property.

Use of the area is for 50 years beginning January 2019 based on the deed of usufruct signed by then Agriculture Sec. Emmanuel Piñol and then mayor Mauricio Domogan.

As a condition for the use of area, the city government is tasked to protect the BABRC from intrusion of illegal settlers, allot a space for the construction of a farmer’s center in support of the Masaganang Ani at Kita project of the DA, donate to the DA-Cordillera 20 percent of lease payments within the area and 20 percent of the net income of revenue-generating projects of the city government.

The city government is also prohibited to sell, dispose, mortgage, encumber, transfer, assign, and tolerate use by a third party, or use as collateral for the LGU’s economic venture the land or any portion for the duration of the agreement.

Since 2018, the city government has been using a portion of the 80,143 square meters as waste transfer station.

Other portions have been identified by the City Planning and Development Office for the south-bound terminal but the same has not taken off, until recently when CPDO head Donna Tabangin requested the city council to pass a resolution supporting the city executive’s request for the DA to grant an additional area to jumpstart plans of developing the area beginning with the relocation of the waste transfer station within the one hectare recently ceded by the DA.

Offices planned to be built at the area are the Atab District Health Center, a state of the art abattoir, fire station, an intermodal terminal, and buffer zones. – Rimaliza A. Opiña