First Philippine Government Green Building
By Perla G. Lena
Iloilo City took pride in having the country’s first “green” government building with the completion of its seven-storey Iloilo city hall that was inaugurated by President Benigno Aquino III on Friday.
The President unveiled the city hall marker assisted by Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, Senator Franklin Drilon, Iloilo Rep. Jerry P. Treñas and other past and current local officials.
Mabilog informed the President that the seventh floor and the roof deck of the city hall make use of solar-assisted air conditioning power, thus saving the city some 60 percent in its electric bill for the two floors.
Designed by WV Coscolluela and Associates and constructed at the cost of around P600 million, the planning of the city hall started during the term of former mayor and now congressman Treñas and was pursued by Mabilog.
Its architectural design underwent several modifications that eventually settled with the infusion of the elements of heritage structures in the city such as the adjacent Masonic temple, Iloilo Customs House and the façade of the old building of the University of the Philippines in the Visayas, which happened to be the first city hall.
The 15-feet bronze statue atop of the dome dubbed as “Lin-ay sang Iloilo” is one of the major features of the new building and believed to be the first of its kind in the Philippines. It was donated by an Ilonggo philanthropist who until now remains unnamed and designed by Ilonggo artist and UP Professor Eduardo Defensor.
The icon, which symbolizes Iloilo’s rich heritage and culture, stands on a pedestal carved with the major assets of Iloilo to include rice-farming, sugarcane, fishing and education.