Juan Arellano, the architect who designed Jones Bridge, Manila Metropolitan Theater, and Manila Central Post Office, among others, was posthumously given the highest honor the Manila City government could award in a ceremony last Friday night at Manila Hotel.
Mayor Joseph Ejercito Estrada, assisted by Vice Mayor Maria Sheilah Lacuna-Pangan, handed the “Gawad Gat Andres Bonifacio Award” to the awardee’s son, Juan Arellano Jr.
“Our family is grateful to the city officials for this posthumous award to my father in recognition for his contributions to the city and the country. You made us proud and we are happy in knowing that he has inspired so many people,” said Arellano Jr., himself also an architect, in his short message after receiving the award on behalf of his father.
“Our celebration of the 44th Araw ng Maynila has become more meaningful because we have successfully overcome the challenges of the past and that Manila has risen and has set new records and the most important are that the city is no longer bankrupt. We are now financially capable and in fact has renovated and modernized our six hospitals, built new school buildings, new sports facilities, modernized our public markets and parks,” Estrada, for his part, said.
Arellano, who was born in Manila on April 25, 1888 and died on December 5, 1960, is also credited for designing the Center United Methodist Church on Kalaw Avenue and the provincial capitol buildings of Bulacan, Cebu, and Negros Occidental.
He was a contemporary of Tomas Mapua, another architect, who founded Mapua University. He was also the one who helped American Harry Frost in designing Quezon City as the new capital of Philippines.
Estrada also handed plaques to the eight outstanding Manilans and top 10 real estate property and business taxpayers of the city.
Outstanding Manilans are sculpture Ramon Orlina, teacher and Palanca awardee Patrocinio Villaforte, film maker Auraeus Solitas, book author and play writer Amelia Lapena Bonifacio, National Book Store founder Socorro Ramos, actress Boots Anson Roa, and Senator Juan Edgardo Angara.
The top 10 taxpayers for 2016 are Manila Electric Company (P149,567,080.65), International Containers
Terminal Services Inc. (P93,609,821.85), SM Prime Holdings Inc. (P61,63,141.86), Mercury Drug Corp.
(P50,318,937.03), Unilever Philippines Inc. (P49,490,251.23), Asian Terminals Inc. (P41,362,828.88), Maynilad
Water Services (P35,482,721.05), Philippine Star Inc. (P27,460,883.12), Puregold Price Club Inc. (P25,428,566.29), and Golden Arches Development Corp, Mc Donald’s (P19,230,810.56).
The top 10 real estate taxpayers are Asian Terminals Inc., Unilever Philippine Inc., Manila North Harbour Port Inc., SM Prime Holdings Inc., Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Home Guaranty Corp., Bataan Shipyard & Engineering Co. Inc., Manila Electric Company, Megaworld Corp., and Robinsons Land Corp.