DOT lauds Cebu City’s Unesco ‘Design City’ title

Johanna Marie O. Bajenting

THE Department of Tourism (DOT) has urged other cities to follow suit after Cebu was hailed as a creative City of Design by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco).

In a statement, the agency welcomed Cebu’s inclusion to the Unesco Creative Cities Network, second to Baguio City, to gain the global recognition in the country.

“This international recognition on the Design Category affirms the wellspring of creative talents manifested in the furniture, fashion accessories and other sectors, the latest of which is in the global transportation hub sector, evident in the first ever resort airport in the world—the Mactan-Cebu International Airport,” it said in a press release on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019.

It also recognized the “leaders, shakers and movers of Cebu City for their significant involvement and active efforts leading to the inclusion of Cebu City in the list.”

“The DOT rallies more cities to join Cebu City and Baguio City in this prestigious Unesco Network of Creative Cities and be considered as icons of sustainable urban development,” it said.

DOT 7 Director Shahlimar Tamano said the action plans for the city are underway, especially with the upcoming 500 years of commemoration of Christianity in the Philippines.

“We congratulate the artistic, creative designer community in Cebu which is strong. We are in the thick of preparations for the 500th year of commemoration and the leaders are quite bullish to make sure that Cebu remains to be the leader whether it’s in tourism, arts and design,” he told SunStar Cebu.

Kenneth Cobonpue, Regional Development Council Central Visayas co-chairman, said in an earlier interview that efforts to boost Cebu’s flourishing design assets were ongoing.

“The Cebu City Government wants to close off Colon St. and create a night market. There are areas in the city reserved for our vendors, which have to be developed properly to encourage locals and tourists to visit. I am working with our architects and conservationists to redevelop Old Cebu and opening it up at night,” he told SunStar Cebu.

Cobonpue said Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella also wants to plant more trees as part of the plans.