PPMC, PCG ink agreement for Poro Point Lighthouse rehab

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union, May 4 (PIA) — The Poro Point Management Corporation (PPMC) inked on Saturday, April 28, a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) to repair and rehabilitate the Poro Point’s iconic lighthouse and ensure economic and tourism development where the lighthouse stands in the Poro Point Freeport Zone (PPFZ).

The MOA allows the PPMC to make vital development efforts of the Poro Point Lighthouse which is part of the PCG’s ‘Adopt-a-Lighthouse’ program that encourages third party participation in the preservation and maintenance of culturally valuable lighthouses in the country.

The agreement stated that PPMC will not only make necessary repairs and rehabilitation of the said lighthouse, but rather, it has to prepare a program of work for the project, and also rehabilitate the shotgun house used by the keeper of the lighthouse turning it into a museum. As planned, the works should be completed in time for the next ‘Sillag Festival’ in 2013.

The development aims to draw investors and tourists in the area who wish to witness the 76 feet high lighthouse erected by the PCG way back in the 1970’s. At present, it is one of the oldest yet functional lighthouses in the country.

It serves as beacon for ships and boats plying the sea at night. Bounded on the west by the west Philippine sea and on the east by the San Fernando bay, its apex is the highest elevation of the peninsula, and allows an unobstructed view of the panoramic landscapes and seascapes of the province.

At the lighthouse, one can experience the beautiful sunrises and sunsets La Union is known for, while overlooking the undulating greens of the beautiful ‘The Cliffs Golf Course’ of Thunderbird Resorts and a coastline of pristine white sand. Atop the Poro Point Lighthouse, a tourist gets a glimpse of the best that Poro Point can offer.

The lighthouse is solar powered and its light can reach as far as 10 nautical miles.

It was emphasized during the MOA signing that the lighthouse is a historic landmark of the North Luzon. In comparison, the lighthouse serves as a beacon to guide boats safely to shore, while the PPFZ serves a beacon for development in the whole North Luzon.

PPMC will allocate funds for the project and ensure that the rehabilitation and maintenance of the lighthouse will be in collaboration with the PCG which has jurisdiction over the facility.

PPMC Chairman Ives Q. Nisce said that the said rehabilitation of the Poro Point Lighthouse is but a first step for future efforts to highlight La Union as a tourism and investment arena.

“We are confident that other groups will follow our lead and replicate rehabilitation and development efforts in their areas in the province,” Nisce said

PCG Vice Admiral Edmund Castor Tan highlighted that stakeholder’s effort in burden sharing with the government in so far as development efforts is concerned is important. “It enhanced mutual capacity to fulfil one goal for the common good.”

PPMC President and Chief Executive Officer Florante Gerdan said that preserving our heritage sites would contribute to increase in tourist arrivals, and eventually increase in investments as well as business opportunities for the local entrepreneurs.

“So we preserve our past to open doors for our future,” Gerdan added.

The signing was entered into by PPMC President Gerdan and PCG Vice Admiral Tan with the presence of PPMC Chairman Nisce and PCG Northern Western Luzon Commander Leopoldo V. Laroya, together with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) executive officials and board of directors headed by Chairman Felicito Payumo and President and Chief Executive Officer Arnel Casanova.

PPMC, is a subsidiary of the state-owned BCDA which seeks to develop economic hubs that bring employment to thousands of Filipinos. (JCR-PIA 1 La Union)

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