City studying transfer of night market to Kayang

Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan ordered concerned offices of the local government and the Baguio City Police office (BCPO) to study the feasibility of relocating the on-going night market area from its present site along a portion of Harrison Road to a stretch of Kayang Street.

The local chief executive issued the directive in a bid to find a permanent site that will serve as the venue for the night market which is being frequented by residents and tourists who come up to the city just to purchase cheap but quality products from the night market vendors.

The city mayor also instructed the BCPO to assess the peace and order situation in the area where the night market is being proposed to be transferred so that all aspects of the planned relocation of the night market area to a permanent place to free Harrison Road for the nightly congestions once a portion of the national road will be closed to pave the way for the said activity.

Earlier, the local government opened the idea of relocating the night market to the perimeter of the Melvin Jones football ground wherein its perimeter will be paved to serve as the area of the stall while the football field will remain in its current state without being disturbed.

However, the said proposal has been met by criticisms from environmentalists because it will affect the state of the football ground.

Councilor Elmer O. Datuin, chairman of the City Council Committee on Tourism, Parks, Playgrounds and Special Events, admitted the planned relocation of the night market area to the most feasible site to be determined by the concerned offices tasked to evaluate and assess the proposed areas where the night market is being proposed to be transferred.

Further, he claimed that Mayor Domogan also instructed concerned offices and the different night market vendors associations to include a display area for indigenous arts and crafts to help sustain the designation of Baguio city as part of the Creative Cities Network of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Previously, the night market was conducted within the concreted portion of the Baguio Athletic Bowl before it was eventually relocated to a portion of Harrison road that resulted to a significant increase in the number of vendors participating in the nightly vending activity.

The night market was conceptualized by the local government to provide sustainable source of livelihood of hundreds of ambulant vendors who were displaced because of the local government’s aggressive campaign to clear the public market and sidewalks from the proliferation of illegal peddlers.

Based on data obtained from the City Treasury Office, there are over 1,000 night vendors participating in the night market operations that start at around 9 pm and end up on the wee hours of the next morning.

The night market generates approximately P14 to P15 million annually from the regulatory fees being paid by the participating night market vendors who were able to help establish the identity of the night market as one of the most frequented places in the city where people could buy cheap and quality goods. - Dexter A. See