P4.8-M tower reasonably priced

THE P4.8 million Halandumon tower at corner Gonzaga-Gatuslao Streets, Bacolod City. (Bacolod City PIO Photo)

By: Dolly Yasa and Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – The City Engineer’s Office (CEO) here defended the construction of the Halandumon Tower against claims that it is overpriced.

The P4.8-million Halandumon Tower at Gatuslao-Gonzaga Streets was inaugurated on June 18.

However, it drew flak and trended on social media as to its cost.

Loban Rafael Ceballos of the CEO said the P4.8-million price tag is not overpriced.

The tower is 14.9 meters high and its design concept was done by the United Architects of the Philippines.

Ceballos said the outer tower symbolizes sugarcane while the inner tower signifies rice or palay. The structure has eight columns that gradually rise to signify the eight decades that Bacolod has continually progressed.

Project engineer Xenia Locsin said the original height of the tower was supposed to be 23 meters tall but this was reduced to 14.9 meters because the budget was not enough.

Ceballos said the framing of the tower is made of steel and the cover of the column is made of light wall concrete.

He further said the structure is lightweight and is water proof, as well as economical, based on its design.

Its LED lighting system has 23 patterns that can be programmed depending on the occasion or festivities.

Ceballos added that the civil works cost about P3.7 million, and the electrical system cost P1 million aside from the painting works that cost P154,610.

Ceballos further said that the project is not overpriced because they tried to balance the cost when they conceptualized it.

One purpose of the Halandumon Tower is to serve as another tourist attraction in the city.

“They have removed the previous structure in the area since it no longer served its purpose and we were able to create an additional lane because they have widened the road surrounding the structure, he said.”

City officials headed by Mayor Evelio Leonardia led the ceremonial lighting and inauguration of the tower near the public plaza.

Councilor Em Ang, chairperson of the Committee on Tourism, said the inauguration of the tower was supposed to be done on the 80th anniversary of Bacolod last year. But, due to some factors in the construction, it was moved this year which was also timely for the 1st June 18 Charter Day.

Ang said the tower was designed by Architect Jico Monte, whose concept emphasized the success of living in the city over the past 80 years.

Ang said it used to be a clock tower which was already dilapidated, that’s why they opted to make it as a new landmark, an added attraction in the city.

Every element of the tower speaks of a concept in which, like the base tower, has the shape of a heart wherein its lower pointed tip points towards true north direction.

The eight exterior towers with octagonal shape symbolize a bunch of sugarcane which is the backbone of the city and province of Negros Occidental, Ang said.

The eight interior towers in diamond shape represent a bundle of rice crop, she added.