BAGUIO Mayor Benjamin Magalong has ordered the closure of the man-made tourist attraction Igorot Stone Kingdom along Long-long Road in Pinsao Proper barangay over issues with the establishment’s permits as well as safety concerns.
According to Magalong, the establishment is operating without a business permit while the stone structures inside are not covered by a building permit, putting the structural integrity of the structures in question.
Magalong said that the owner had already been informed of the permit violations prior and was advised to comply with requirements, but failed to comply.
Instead of complying with the permit requirements, the owner of the tourist attraction attempted to build more structures against the advice of the city government, even defying cease and desist orders, which led to the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) filing criminal cases for violation of the National Building Code on November 7.
Based on the ongoing Climate Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (CRVA) for Baguio City being conducted by the Asian Development Bank and the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO), it was found that the structure is in a “very high landslide exposure.”
The mayor said the Mines and Geo-Sciences Bureau of the Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (MGB-DENR) has also declared the area as “prone to erosion.”
“General welfare always weighed more than personal benefits under our administration.
With this, we will not hesitate to close down establishments when the safety of our constituents and tourists is found to be at risk due to non-compliance with structural safety laws,” Magalong said.