A green space

By Cris Evert Lato-Ruffolo |September 14,2018 - 09:47 PM


I wholeheartedly laud the initiators for the concept and hard work put into the realization of Mandaue City’s first Agri-Eco Park.

Monday at 5 p.m. is the worse time to be stuck in Mandaue City.

Antoinette and I had an early dinner at Wingers Unlimited located close to the Maguikay flyover, and we were ready to get on any mode of transportation so we can be home in Liloan. But there were no Grab cars, taxis or jeepneys available to take us home.

The traffic situation was beyond horrible.

Antoinette suggested that we walk instead from the Maguikay flyover area to Pacific Mall.

My children are big fans of that mall because their toys’ section is a paradise of kitchen toys, cars and trucks, musical instruments, dolls, bikes and everything a child wishes to have.

I checked Google and it told me that the distance from Maguikay flyover to Pacific Mall is only 1.2 kilometers, but it would mean a 16-minute walk.

I had Antoinette with me — the hiker, among our three children — so it was no problem.

In that walk, we had a few stopovers and met some people along the way: the traffic enforcer of the Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue (TEAM) who helped Antoinette tie her shoelaces; the candy and cigarette vendor who had a hard time explaining to my little girl why she is selling a product that is bad for the lungs; and the high school student, who complimented Antoinette’s ability to speak Visayan.

Antoinette and I were singing and smiling as we observed more cars and jeepneys lining up on M.C. Briones Street waiting for their vehicles to move.

Just before we reached Pacific Mall, our attention was drawn to a park smacked in the area of high volume traffic.

We saw sunflowers to the delight of Antoinette.

There was a fish pond and a greenhouse.

I remember a story about this in CDN, Barangay Ibabao-Estancia’s Agri-Eco Park, the first of its kind in Mandaue City.

It is quite an unusual spot for a park as it is surrounded by three roads: J.P. Rizal in the west, R. Colina in the south, and S.B. Cabahug in the east.

Entrance to the park is free of charge.

A person wearing a Mandaue shirt waved to us when we went inside the park.

We headed straight to the sunflowers to check that they are indeed real and not the metal ones like the sunflowers at Baker’s Hill in Puerto Princesa, Palawan.

Because it was nearing night time, Antoinette and I only stayed for about five minutes and then walked to the Pacific Mall for our dinner and toy shopping.

I was quite excited about the park and went on to talk Antoinette into going back to the park one of these days.

“But the boys (should) not go, Nanay. They will run outside and the cars will hit them,” she said.

She was right.

Parents need to peel their two eyes open for their children if they will bring them to this park.

As mentioned, it is surrounded by three roads and the fences are not yet up.

Vehicles pass by on a constant basis.

Do not leave your child alone.

They can leave the park premises and head out to the streets.

But this is a good start, and I wholeheartedly laud the initiators for the concept and hard work put into the realization of Mandaue City’s first Agri-Eco Park.

Mandaue City has made the remarkable move in 2016 when the government reinforced the city-wide prohibition of plastic bags to address the city’s flooding problems.

I am looking forward to more parks and playgrounds as proofs of this city’s commitment to sustainable development.

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