VARGAS: LA MESA ECOPARK, A PRIDE OF NOVALICHES

Quezon City Fifth District Representative PM Vargas is elated for the multi-stakeholder cooperation as the La Mesa Ecopark reopened to the public last June 29 after it has been closed for over four months due to the end of 25-year-old stewardship of Bantay Kalikasan.

“For this place to be in my district, I’m one of the luckiest congressmen already,” Vargas notes, expressing confidence in the leadership of Mayor Joy Belmonte, who he said is the “fiercest environmentalist” he has ever met.

La Mesa is the last ecological frontier of National Capital Region, covering a 2,659-hectare forest and watershed area which is the primary source of potable drinking water for close to 12 million residents of Metro Manila. The forest area, in its part, is home to 520 vulnerable and endangered flora and fauna.

Vargas emphasized his commitment in making this a better place for future generations. He has filed and passed on Third Reading House Bill 5301 or An Act Declaring La Mesa Ecopark as a Tourism Site. The proposed measure seeks to provide a development plan that aims to rehabilitate, reforest, preserve and protect La Mesa while promoting its highest tourism potential and value, thereby providing jobs and revenue for the local government.

“These efforts have already been fought for by my brother, former Congressman Alfred Vargas since the Sixteenth Congress. We will continue the fight until we put forward what is best for our people and for this God-given gift of nature.”

He also prodded the new management under Manila Water Foundation of their shared vision towards a greener future. A Memorandum of Agreement has been signed for the administration of the La Mesa Ecopark, including its rehabilitation and maintenance operations. The new and improved park is set for completion next year.

“La Mesa, for me, is a sanctuary. This is a privilege for our fellow Novaleños given a close access to this natural gem. It can also aid better mental health, job and livelihood opportunities, and priceless memories with friends and families,” Vargas said.

The Ecopark is open from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM on Tuesdays to Sundays. No entrance fee will be charged to QCitizens. Non-QC residents can enjoy the park with a minimal entrance fee of P20.00.

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