City gov’t revives plazas, parks as center of family recreation

The Iloilo City Government has revived its thrust to have parks and plazas as family recreation areas as it opened the first of four children’s playgrounds at the Plaza Libertad on Monday, April 8.

“I am so happy to see children playing. This will now be the center of their activities,” said Mayor Jose Espinosa III following the launching of the playground.

Among the children seen playing at the playground were pupils of the Montes Elementary School, a nearby public school where the mayor completed his elementary grades.

Espinosa said he would like to revive the tradition when plazas and park were once a destination for families.

“We would like to renew the interest of our residents in our plaza, which used to be the focal point for families, especially during weekends,” he said.

The PHP1.9 million playground has a swing, slides, seesaws, playground climbers, playground tunnels and rubberized floor. The materials were sourced from Malaysia and Singapore, City Engineer Roberto Divinagracia said.

“It was personally chosen by the mayor from among hundreds of proposals,” Divinagracia said.

Next week, Espinosa said they hope to also open three more playgrounds in plazas of Molo, Jaro and La Paz districts.

The city government is also trying to identify areas for other plazas. Iloilo City has seven districts, each has its own plaza.

The playground will be supervised by the city government’s child-minding center (CMC). A safety officer will also be assigned to look into the children who are playing at the facility.

Espinosa started the revival of the plazas by having them adequately illuminated, saying he feels sad seeing that the plaza prior the revival was dark and some portions were occupied by “ukay-ukay” sellers.

“Currently, families can stay in plazas as long as they want because they are now well-lighted,” the mayor said.

In addition to children’s playground, the city government is also planning a space for senior citizens or a senior citizens’ park. It will be provided with facility where the elderly can also exercise.PNA

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