Jo An Sablad

A PLANETARIUM and observatory will soon rise in Molugan, El Salvador City, Misamis Oriental. Provincial Information Officer Nicole Managbanag said the construction of the half-hectare planetarium and observatory, which will be erected beside the Pagasa weather station, will push through this year as the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration-Department of Science and Technology (Pagasa-DOST) has allotted P50 million for the construction of the said building. Managbanag said only minor problems, such as the processing of clearances from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, possible flooding in the area, and negotiation with the residents who will be affected by the project, need to be addressed and these will be solved soon as the Pagasa-DOST has requested help from the Provincial Government. In response to the request, Managbanag said Misamis Oriental Governor Yevgeny Emano will be creating a technical team to look over the project's problems. "Lalagyan pa yan ng mga mangrove bed sa shore side kasi malapit man yung Pagasa sa shore area so lagyan ng mangrove bed para hindi na sya mag cause ng flood in the future (A mangrove bed also will be placed in the shore side since the Pagasa weather station is located near the shore to avoid possible flooding in the future)," Managbanag added.

The provincial information officer also said that they are expecting a huge economic improvement in El Salvador as soon as the planetarium and observatory in the said city is finished as it will generate an influx of both local and foreign tourists and businessmen. "Local employment for the locals in El Salvador, economic activities mag grow yan like mga souvenir items, restaurants, yung nasa five regions sa Mindanao, hindi na kailangang pumunta sa Luzon or Visayas para mag educational tour, so dito na sila magpunta para dyan (will grow like having souvenir items, restaurants, and people from the five regions in Mindanao doesn't need to go to Luzon and Visayas for an educational tour anymore as it can be done here in Mindanao)," Managbanag said. At present, the Philippines has planetariums in Museum of Space History in Manila, and in Philippine Science High School in Iloilo. The planetarium in El Salvador will be the first in Mindanao.

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