FROM LINGAYEN TO SAN FERNANDO, LU? –The Lingayen Baywalk built through the initiative of Second District Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil, the Pangasinan provincial government and the Department of Tourism through its Tourism Infrastructure Enterprise Zone Authority is now a big boon to health buffs, tourism and, of course, to commuters rushing to their destinations.
We found this out when Manila Bulletin’s and also PUNCH’s lensman Jojo Rinoza invited us to ride with him in his new SUV on our way back to Dagupan from Lingayen, where we both attended a press conference called by Mr. Raffy Baraan and Engr. Alvin Bigay last week.
Finding heavy vehicular traffic along the highway from Lingayen to Binmaley, Jojo took the airport road and turned left to the road leading to Camp Antonio Sison of the PNP and out to the baywalk, a safe distance away from the seashore.
The baywalk, which now extends from west Lingayen to Binmaley or a distance of more than nine kilometers, is as wide as an ordinary cemented provincial road that serves as the borderline between titled properties and those which we can call public domain or lands in the possession of the state.
So anyone who would dare build structures beyond the baywalk would be dubbed as squatters and their structures will be demolished.
I heard from Congressman Bataoil that one foreigner protested when his resort standing in the way of the baywalk on the Binmaley side but was later told by the personnel of the Community Environment and Natural Resources that he has no reason to protest because his property was inside the salvage zone of the Lingayen Gulf and that he was in fact been long squatting there.
I cautioned Jojo that the baywalk is only for walking and jogging but he told me it can also accommodate light vehicles when there are no people using the road doing their routine physical fitness activities or for any emergency situation. But the heavy vehicles, such as trucks, are banned from passing through the baywalk.
It was a short five-kilometer drive with not a single vehicle running on the opposite side except a passenger jeepney parked on the side loaded with wood and other debris which it was obviously transporting to another place.
On the left side of the baywalk are rows of properties fenced by their respective owners and which are obviously being primed to become beach resorts soon.
Indeed, the baywalk will spur multi-million if not billions of pesos of tourism investments in Binmaley and Lingayen and those places will soon be teeming with local and of foreign tourists. The place will easily become another alternative to Boracay Island.
The trip ended in Barangay San Isidro Norte in Binmaley past the Philippine Army’s Camp Andres Malong,
I asked Jojo if he knew where LGU of Binmaley dumps its wastes in the camp, and Jojo told me it is now gone.
The cemented road from San Isidro Norte to Poblacion Binmaley is narrower than the baywalk and where motorists can start to feel slight vehicular traffic.
On the way to the Poblacion, Jojo pointed to the road on the left leading to the Pangasinan State University campus and to Pugaro, Dagupan City.
I remember what former Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. told Congressman Bataoil when he gave the former a tour of the baywalk a few months ago: “The baywalk should be extended up to Dagupan and then to San Fabian.”
Not only up to San Fabian but may be up to Agoo and San Fernando, La Union perhaps. (Leonardo Micua)
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