By Ria Fernandez
The Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC), maintenance provider and operator of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) line 1, conducted a clean-up drive at the LiwasangBonifacio in Manila, Wednesday morning, to revitalize the beauty of this historic landmark.
This is part of LRMC’s ikotMNL project aimed at rediscovering tourism sites in the Philippines’ capital city by riding the train just like in other countries.
“We are promoting the different [historical] sites in Manila. Hopefully, you can visit Manila and learn about our history…[to know] who we are,” LRMC President and CEO Juan Alfonso said.
The LiwasangBonifacio is a 700-sqm park across the Post Office in Ermita, Manila and formerly known as the Cuarteldel Fortin, which guarded the Pasig River, during Spain’s colonization of the country. It also joined the list of freedom parks in Manila, where protesters stage rallies.
But for some reasons, the beauty of the park slowly faded as more ambulant vendors and informal settlers occupied it.
“This used to be a very beautiful place before. When we were kids, our parents would usually bring us here to stroll,” Pasay City Environment and Natural Resources Office Supervisor RodelCapili said in Filipino.”Good thing now, we are having this clean-up to bring back its life,” he added.
Grade 8 student Carlotta Celestra, who volunteered in the clean-up drive, said she is grateful to have been given the opportunity to be part of this noble cause.”It is a great relief because through this I am able to help keep the history behind this [park],” she said.
“It is not just the history of Manila but of the Philippines. It is a heritage from our forefathers that’s why we have to maintain its cleanliness and orderliness,” said Rohb Martin, operations assistant manager of Manila’s Department of Public Services-District 5.
The Manila Tourism Department’s battlecry is to regain the lost glory and pride of the city.