House bills declaring Carcar, San Vicente as heritage zones get Senate nod

Published September 27, 2021, 5:03 PM

by Hannah Torregoza 

The Senate on Monday approved on third and final reading two local bills that seek to declare Carcar City in Cebu and the municipality of San Vicente in Ilocos Sur as heritage zones.

The Upper Chamber approved in particular House Bill Nos. 5644 and 7927, which seeks the conservation and preservation of Carcar City and San Vicente’s rich history. Once signed into law, the cultural landmarks and historical sites in both places would be preserved as heritage landmarks.

Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian, chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture and sponsor of the proposed measures, said the declaration and establishment of the heritage zones are in accordance with Republic Act No. 10066 or the “National Cultural Heritage Act of 2099.”

“Carcar, known as the Heritage City of Cebu, is home to vintage houses and school buildings that showcase the architecture of the Spanish and American periods,” Gatchalian said.

San Vicente in Ilocos Sur, on the other hand, is home to structures that give a glimpse of life during the Spanish colonial period.

These include the old San Vicente Church, an example of Baroque architecture; the Palacio del Gobernador, the Gabaldon building during the American occupation and the Spanish Baldi, structure consisting of a well and a compartment that used to collect the fermented solution of indigo that was shipped to Mexico.

The measure, Gatchalian said, mandates the Department of Tourism (DOT), in coordination with the provincial government and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and its affiliated cultural agencies, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to prepare a development plan involving the preservation, conservation, restoration and maintenance of cultural and historical sites and structures in the two areas.

He said preservation and restoration of the historical sites and buildings in the two areas would promote enhancement and sustainability of tourism.