By: Dolly Yasa
BACOLOD City – The 81st charter day celebration of this city kicked off on June 18, 2019 with the inauguration of the P400-million Simplicio A. Palanca Passenger Seaport Terminal at the BREDCO Port, Reclamation Area here.
Mayor Evelio Leonardia led the inauguration of the port facility together with lone district Rep. Greg Gasataya, Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, Councilor Em Ang, BREDCO President John P. Alonte, BREDCO director Willie Au, and Ms. Nena De Leon.
Leonardia said that the port is a catalyst of change that would further spur development and progress in the city.
He added that the project is an example of a successful collaboration with the private sector.
A midnight countdown was held on June 17 at the Bacolod Government to usher in the 81st charter day
It was capped with a fireworks display.
The P37-million Bacolod Esplanade was also inaugurated and opened to the public Monday evening.
Meanwhile, port manager Romeo Casela said the state-of-the-art passenger terminal is 100 percent operational.
It has a prayer room, restrooms, and other amenities like x-ray machines for baggage. It is also fully air-conditioned and houses food stalls.
Casela said they employed 31 security officers and spent P7 million for security cameras. The Philippine Coast Guard will also assist them with their K-9 dogs.
The port facility can cater to about 3,500 passengers daily. The average number of fast craft passengers is about 2,700 daily while the rest board 2Go vessels plying Manila-Bacolod routes.
He also said that the passenger terminal is about 10,800 square meters, three times bigger than the passenger terminal in Iloilo City.
Casela further said that they are constructing a separate terminal for roll on-roll off vessels because these have different mode of operation scheme.
They hope to finish the port by the end of July or August 2019.