The People’s Park in Davao, a mirror of the city, The Philippines

The People’s Park in Davao, a mirror of the city, The Philippines

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The People’s Park of Davao City mirrors the rich culture of the city as well as the lifestyles of the Davaoeños. Visitors coming from the nearby and far-flung provinces always packed with people from all walks of life and ages can see ,stroll and experience the park.. Filipino songs are played through the Park’s piped-in music. Caregivers and wheelchairs are available for the disabled. Several CCTVs are installed strategically throughout the Park to ensure the safety and security of the visiting guests. Best of all, the entrance is FREE!
The 4-hectare park got its name from a “Name the Park” contest by the city government which was won by Romeo Sardon, a retired electrician and seaman. He bagged the P50,000 grand prize money for winning among the 918 entries that were submitted in contest.People’s Park is a cultural-theme park located at the heart of Davao City. It is the brainchild of the mayor of Davao City, Rodrigo Duterte, who, in December 15, 2007, led the ceremonial inauguration of the park.

This P72-M park is once an old, dilapidated Palaruang Panlunsod or commonly known as the old PTA ground where the city used to host athletic meets, sports events, orchid shows, concerts, and other citywide events.

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The Durian Dome serves as the visitor’s center and main entrance which opens to the park. This spiky dome roof was artistically designed after the spiky shell of the durian, a tropical fruit which Davao City is known for.
The oval race track from the old sports complex was retained and permanently paved with bricks and is now called, ‘The Promenade,’ since the track is a favorite venue among joggers and health buffs for morning physical fitness and therapeutic exercises. Joggers can now jog around the oval amid the beautifully landscaped lush greenery and quiet ambiance of the park. Surrounding it are: a bambusetum, a collection of the different species of bamboo; a shady plaza where African tulips are planted within the 3,750 square meter-area; and an open plaza with a walk-through rainbow drive featuring some collections of potted palms.

At the center of the oval track is a wide grassy area with a dancing fountain which is considered the first in Mindanao, and a long, wide bridge which affords a panoramic view of the entire park. Also, there is a sloping hill filled with tall, stately pine trees that were brought-in from Baguioand Benguet in Luzon. Behind this area is the park’s man-made “rainforest” that stretches all the way to the opposite side of the park close to the exit gate.

The wide grassy area of the park was retained for open-air concerts and entertainment shows.
There are many beautifully handcrafted concrete artworks and figures representing the Lumads, the indigenous people or tribe of Davao. The artworks were done by artist Kublai Millan, a well-known and prolific Davao sculptor who created the Freedom statue in front of the SangguniangPanlungsod building.
Part of the forested area of the Park is a 10-meter man-made waterfalls against a backdrop of a volcanic rock wall. The water flows from the fall to a river that seeps into man-made lakes under the tall forest trees.

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How to get to the People’s Park?

The Park is situated in the heart of the city right across Casa Leticia at the corners of Jose Camus and J. Palma Gil streets, and is a walking distance from Apo View Hotel, Mandaya Hotel, shopping malls, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, commercial establishments, and entertainment areas.

/// Written by Sheena Lou Alagao, The Philippines