Bacolod

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Bacolod
City of Bacolod
Skyline of urban Bacolod
Skyline of urban Bacolod
Flag of Bacolod
Official seal of Bacolod
Nickname(s): 
The City of Smiles[1][2]
Map of Negros Occidental with Bacolod highlighted
Map of Negros Occidental with Bacolod highlighted
OpenStreetMap
Bacolod is located in Philippines
Bacolod
Bacolod
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 10°40′35″N 122°57′03″E / 10.676458°N 122.950917°E / 10.676458; 122.950917Coordinates: 10°40′35″N 122°57′03″E / 10.676458°N 122.950917°E / 10.676458; 122.950917
CountryPhilippines
RegionWestern Visayas
ProvinceNegros Occidental (geographically only)
District Lone district
Founded1755 or 1756 (town)
CityhoodJune 18, 1938 (de jure)
October 19, 1938 (de facto)
Highly urbanized citySeptember 27, 1984
Barangays61 (see Barangays)
Government
[3]
 • MayorAlbee B. Benitez (PDPLBN)
 • Vice MayorEl Cid M. Familiaran (NP)
 • RepresentativeGreg G. Gasataya (NPC)
 • City Council
Members
 • Electorate312,816 voters (2019)
Area
 • City162.67 km2 (62.81 sq mi)
 • Metro
578.65 km2 (223.42 sq mi)
Elevation105 m (344 ft)
Highest elevation
1,461 m (4,793 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
Population
 (2020 census) [6]
 • City600,783
 • Density3,700/km2 (9,600/sq mi)
 • Metro
994,309
 • Metro density1,700/km2 (4,500/sq mi)
 • Households
126,516
DemonymsHiligaynon (Ilonggo): Bacolodnon
English: Bacolodian
Spanish: Bacoleño (masculine)/Bacoleña (feminine)
Economy
 • Income class1st city income class
 • Poverty incidence4.74% (2018)[7]
 • Revenue₱2,654,663,158.35 (2020)
 • Assets₱6,394,550,460.33 (2020)
 • Expenditure₱2,368,956,097.62 (2020)
 • Liabilities₱2,024,276,566.71 (2020)
Service provider
 • ElectricityCentral Negros Electric Cooperative (CENECO)
Time zoneUTC+8 (PST)
ZIP code
6100
PSGC
IDD:area code+63 (0)34
LanguagesHiligaynon
Tagalog
Websitewww.bacolodcity.gov.ph

Bacolod, officially known as the City of Bacolod (/bɑːˈkɔːləd/; Hiligaynon: Dakbanwa/Syudad sang Bacolod; Tagalog: Lungsod ng Bacolod), is a 1st class highly urbanized city in the region of Western Visayas, Philippines.[8] It is the capital of the province of Negros Occidental, where it is geographically situated but governed administratively independent.

With a total of 600,783 inhabitants as of the 2020 census, it is the most populous city in Western Visayas and the second most populous city in the entire Visayas after Cebu City. [6] It is the center of the Bacolod metropolitan area, which also includes the cities of Silay and Talisay with a total population of 791,019 inhabitants, [9] along with a total area of 578.65 km2 (223.42 sq mi).

It is notable for its MassKara Festival held during the third week of October and is known for being a relatively friendly city, as it bears the nickname "The City of Smiles". The city is also famous for its local delicacies piaya, cansi, and chicken inasal.[10][11][12]

Etymology[edit]

Bacólod (English: Bacolod), is derived from bakólod (Old Spelling: bacólod), the Old Hiligaynon (Old Ilonggo) (Old Spelling: Ylongo and Ilongo) word for a "hill, turtle, mound, rise, hillock, down, any small eminence or elevation",[13] since the resettlement was founded on a stony, hilly area, now the barangay of Granada.[14] It was officially called Ciudad de Bacólod (City of Bacolod) when Municipalidad de Bacólod (Municipality of Bacolod) was converted into a city in 1938.[citation needed]

History[edit]

A view of the Capitol Park and Lagoon looking towards the Negros Occidental Provincial Capitol building

Spanish colonial period[edit]

Historical church accounts provide a glimpse of the early years of Bacolod as a mere small settlement by the riverbank known as Magsungay (translated as "horn-shaped" in English). When the neighboring settlement of Bago was elevated into the status of a small town in 1575,[15] it had several religious dependencies and one of which was the village of Magsungay. The early missionaries placed the village under the care and protection of Saint Sebastian sometime in the middle of the 18th century. A corregidor (English: magistrate) by the name of Luis Fernando de Luna, donated a relic of the saint for the growing mission, and since then, the village came to be known as San Sebastián de Magsung̃ay.[16]

Bacolod was not established as a town until 1755 or 1756, after the inhabitants of the coastal settlement of San Sebastián de Magsung̃ay, were attacked by forces under Datu Bantílan of Sulu on July 14, 1755, and the villagers transferred from the coast to a hilly area called Bacólod (which is now the barangay of Granada). Bernardino de los Santos became the first gobernadorcillo (English: municipal judge or governor). The town of Bacolod was constituted as a parroquia (English: parish) in 1788 under the secular clergy, but did not have a resident priest until 1802, as the town was served by the priest from Bago, and later Binalbagan. By 1790, slave raids on Bacolod by Moro pirates had ceased.[17]

On February 11, 1802, Fr. Eusebio Laurencio became acting parish priest of Bacolod. In September 1806, Fr. León Pedro was appointed interim parish priest and the following year became the first regular parish priest.[18] In September 1817, Fray (English: Friar) Julián Gonzaga from Barcelona was appointed as the parish priest. He encouraged the people to settle once again near the sea. He also encouraged migration to Bacolod and the opening of lands to agriculture and industry.[18]

In 1846, upon the request of Romualdo Jimeno, bishop of Cebu and Negros at that time, Governor-General Narciso Clavería y Zaldúa sent to Negros a team of Recollect missionaries headed by priest Fernando Cuenca.[16] A decree of June 20, 1848, by Gobernador General Clavería ordered the restructuring of Negros politically and religiously. The following year (1849), Negros Island Gobernadorcillo Manuel Valdevieso y Morquecho transferred the capital of the Province of Negros from Himamaylan to Bacolod and the Augustinian Recollects were asked to assume spiritual administration of Negros, which they did that same year. Transfer of Bacolod to the Recollects, however, took place only in 1871.[17] Fray Mauricio Ferrero became the first Augustinian Recollect parish priest of Bacolod and successor to the secular priest, Fr. Mariano Ávila.[18] In 1863, a compulsory primary public school system was set up.[19][20]

In 1889, Bacolod became the capital of Occidental Negros when the Province of Negros was politically divided into the separate provinces of Occidental Negros (Spanish: Negros Occidental) and Oriental Negros (Spanish: Negros Oriental).

Revolution and Republic of Negros[edit]

Fountain of Justice and the Bacolod Old City Hall, the site where the Spanish authorities surrender Bacolod to the forces of General Aniceto Lacson which took place on November 6, 1898, during the Negros Revolution.
Last page of the Acta de Capitulación (English: Surrender Document).

The success of the uprising in Bacolod and environs was attributed to the low morale of the local imperial Spanish detachment, due to its defeat in Panay and Luzon and to the psychological warfare waged by Generals Aniceto Lacson and Juan Araneta. In 1897, a battle in Bacolod was fought at Matab-ang River. A year later, on November 5, 1898, the Negrense Revolucionarios (English: Negrense Revolutionary Army), armed with knives, bolos, spears, and rifle-like nipa palm stems, and pieces of sawali or amakan mounted on carts, captured the convent, presently Palacio Episcopal (English: Bishop's Palace), where Colonel Isidro de Castro y Cisneros, well-armed cazadores (English: hunters) and platoons of Guardias Civiles (English: Civil Guards), surrendered.

On November 7, 1898, most of the revolutionary army gathered together to establish a provisional junta and to confirm the elections of Aniceto Lacson as president, Juan Araneta as war-delegate, as well as the other officials. For a brief moment, the provinces of Occidental Negros and Oriental Negros were reunited under the cantonal government of the Negrense Revolucionarios, from November 6, 1898, to the end of February 1899, making Bacolod the capital. In March 1899, the American forces led by Colonel James G. Smith occupied Bacolod, the revolutionary capital of República Cantonal de Negros (English: Cantonal Republic of Negros). They occupied Bacolod after the invitation of the Republic of Negros which sought protectorate status for their nation under the United States.

American colonial period[edit]

Bacolod Public Plaza during bicycle (kalesa) races in 1901.
Ancestral home of then Don Generoso Villanueva, also known as the Daku Balay
Aerial view of Bacolod, 1937
Home of then Don Mariano Ramos

The Cantonal Republic of Negros became a U.S. territory on April 30, 1901. This separated Negros Island once again, reverting Bacolod to its status as the capital of Occidental Negros.

The public school of Instituto Rizal (English: Rizal Institute) opened its doors to students on July 1, 1902.[21] Colegio de Nuestra Señora de la Consolación (English: College of Our Lady of Consolation), the first private institution in the province of Negros Occidental, was established in Bacolod by the Augustinian sisters on March 11, 1919, and opened in July 1919.[22][23]

A historic event took place in 1938 when Municipality of Bacolod was elevated into a city through Commonwealth Act No. 326 passed by the 1st National Assembly of the Philippines creating the City of Bacolod.[24] Assemblyman Pedro C. Hernáez of the second district of Negros Occidental sponsored the bill. The law was passed on June 18, 1938. Bacolod was formally inaugurated as a chartered city on October 19, 1938, by virtue of Commonwealth Act No. 404,[25] highlighted by the visit of Commonwealth President Manuel L. Quezon. President Quezon appointed Alfredo Montelíbano, Sr. as the first city mayor of Bacolod.[26]

Japanese occupation and allied liberation[edit]

In World War II, Bacolod was occupied by the Japanese forces on May 21, 1942.[27][28] Lieutenant General Kawano "Kono" Takeshi, the Japanese commanding officer of the 77th Infantry Brigade, 102nd Division, seized the homes of Don Generoso Villanueva, a prominent sugar planter—whose home, the Daku Balay served as the "seat of power" (occupational headquarters for the Japanese Forces in Negros and all of the Central Visayan region of the Philippines) and being the tallest building of Bacolod it served as the city's watchtower—and the home of his brother-in-law, Don Mariano Ramos, the first appointed Municipal President of Bacolod. The home of Don Generoso was lived in by Lt. General Takeshi throughout the duration of the war and also served as his office and the home of Don Mariano was occupied by a Japanese Colonel serving under the command of Lt. General Takeshi. The city was liberated by joint Philippine and American forces on May 29, 1945. It took time to rebuild the city after liberation. However, upon the orders of Lt. General Takeshi, both the homes of Villanueva and Ramos were saved from destruction by the retreating Japanese forces.

In March 1945, upon the invasion of the American and Philippine Commonwealth forces, the withdrawal of the Japanese army into the mountains and the temporary occupation of Bacolod by the combined U.S. and Philippine Commonwealth armed forces, the house of Villanueva was then occupied by Major General Rapp Brush,[28] commander of the 40th Infantry Division, known as the "Sun Burst" Division, for approximately five months. The local Philippine military built and established the general headquarters and camp bases of the Philippine Commonwealth Army which was active from January 3, 1942, to June 30, 1946. The 7th Constabulary Regiment of the Philippine Constabulary was also active from October 28, 1944, to June 30, 1946, and was stationed in Bacolod during and after World War II.

Independent Philippines[edit]

Old flag of Bacolod

When the country finally gained independence from the United States, the city's public markets and slaughterhouses were rebuilt during the administration of then Mayor Vicente Remitió from 1947 to 1949. In 1948, a fire razed a portion of the records section of the old city hall that consumed the rear end of the building and with it, numerous priceless documents of the city.[29]

Bacolod was classified as a highly urbanized city. On September 27, 1984, by the provision of Section 166 and 168 of the Local Government Code and the DILG Memo Circular No. 83-49.

In January 1985, the original hardwood and coral structure of Palacio Episcopal was almost entirely destroyed by a fire. Among the damage of the raging fire were items of significant historical value. The reconstruction of Palacio which took more than two years, was completed in 1990.[30]

In 2008, Bacolod topped a survey by MoneySense Magazine as the "Best Place to Live in the Philippines".[31] The city has also been declared by the Department of Science and Technology as a "center of excellence" for information technology and business process management operations.[32] In 2017 & 2019, Bacolod was awarded the "Top Philippine Model City" as the most livable urban center in the country by The Manila Times.[33][34][35] In 2021, Bacolod received the "2021 Most Business-Friendly Local Government Unit (LGU) Award" under the category of highly-urbanized cities outside the National Capital Region (NCR) in the search organized by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI). This was the second time Bacolod received such award having won the same title in 2007.[36]

Geography[edit]

North Drive Bacolod

Bacolod is located on the northwestern coast of the large island of Negros. Within the island, it is bounded on the north by the city of Talisay, on the east by the town of Murcia and on the south by the city of Bago. As a coastal city, it is bounded on the west by the Guimaras Strait, serving as a natural border of northwestern Negros Island Region to the neighboring Western Visayas. The global location of Bacolod is 10 degrees, 40 minutes 40 seconds - north and 122 degrees 54 minutes 25 seconds - east with Bacolod Public Plaza as the benchmark.

Skyline of Lacson Street, one of the major streets in the city

Bacolod has a total land area of 16,267 hectares (162.67 km2; 62.81 sq mi), including straits and bodies of water and the 124 hectares (310 acres) reclamation area; and is composed of 61 barangay (villages) and 639 purok (smaller units composing a barangay/village). It is accessible by sea through the ports of Banago; the BREDCO Port in the Reclamation Area, and the port of Pulupandan. By air, it is accessible through the Bacolod–Silay International Airport, which is approximately 13 (four is counting from the Lagoon) kilometers away from the center of the city.

Bacolod is ideally located on a level area, slightly sloping down as it extends toward the sea with an average slope of 0.9 percent for the city proper and between 3 and 5 percent for the suburbs.[citation needed] The altitude is 32.8 feet or 10.0 metres above sea level, with the Bacolod City Public Plaza as the benchmark. Bacolod has two pronounced seasons, wet and dry. The rainy (wet) season starts from May to January of the following year with heavy rains occurring during the months of August and September. The dry season starts from the month of February until the last week of April.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Bacolod
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 31
(88)
31
(88)
32
(90)
34
(93)
33
(91)
32
(90)
31
(88)
31
(88)
31
(88)
31
(88)
32
(90)
31
(88)
32
(89)
Average low °C (°F) 23
(73)
23
(73)
24
(75)
25
(77)
25
(77)
25
(77)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 39
(1.5)
37
(1.5)
38
(1.5)
57
(2.2)
156
(6.1)
237
(9.3)
376
(14.8)
338
(13.3)
250
(9.8)
191
(7.5)
134
(5.3)
114
(4.5)
1,967
(77.4)
Source 1: worldweatheronline.com
Source 2: www.myweather2.com

Barangays[edit]

District map of Bacolod
Panorama of Bacolod with Ayala Malls Capitol Central in the background

Bacolod is politically subdivided into 61 barangays.

  • Barangay 1 (Poblacion)
  • Barangay 2 (Población)
  • Barangay 3 (Población)
  • Barangay 4 (Población)
  • Barangay 5 (Población)
  • Barangay 6 (Población)
  • Barangay 7 (Población)
  • Barangay 8 (Población)
  • Barangay 9 (Población)
  • Barangay 10 (Población)
  • Barangay 11 (Población)
  • Barangay 12 (Población)
  • Barangay 13 (Población)
  • Barangay 14 (Población)
  • Barangay 15 (Población)
  • Barangay 16 (Población)
  • Barangay 17 (Población)
  • Barangay 18 (Población)
  • Barangay 19 (Población)
  • Barangay 20 (Población)
  • Barangay 21 (Población)
  • Barangay 22 (Población)
  • Barangay 23 (Población)
  • Barangay 24 (Población)
  • Barangay 25 (Población)
  • Barangay 26 (Población)
  • Barangay 27 (Población)
  • Barangay 28 (Población)
  • Barangay 29 (Población)
  • Barangay 30 (Población)
  • Barangay 31 (Población)
  • Barangay 32 (Población)
  • Barangay 33 (Población)
  • Barangay 34 (Población)
  • Barangay 35 (Población)
  • Barangay 36 (Población)
  • Barangay 37 (Población)
  • Barangay 38 (Población)
  • Barangay 39 (Población)
  • Barangay 40 (Población)
  • Barangay 41 (Población)
  • Alangilan
  • Alijis
  • Banago
  • Bata
  • Cabug
  • Estefanía
  • Felisa
  • Granada
  • Handumanan
  • Mandalagan
  • Mansilingan
  • Montevista
  • Pahanocoy
  • Punta Taytay
  • Singcang-Airport
  • Sum-ag
  • Taculing
  • Tangub
  • Villamonte
  • Vista Alegre

Demographics[edit]

The Bacolod City (New) Government Center
Welcome marker in Bacolod near Forbes Hill by Megaworld
Population census of Bacolod
YearPop.±% p.a.
1903 15,983—    
1918 19,424+1.31%
1939 57,474+5.30%
1948 101,432+6.52%
1960 119,315+1.36%
1970 187,300+4.61%
1975 223,392+3.60%
1980 262,415+3.27%
1990 364,180+3.33%
1995 402,345+1.88%
2000 429,076+1.39%
2007 499,497+2.12%
2010 511,820+0.89%
2015 561,875+1.79%
2020 600,783+1.33%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[37][38][39][40]

As of 2020, Bacolod has a total population of 600,783, [6] and its registered voting population is 312,816 voters (2019).

Economy[edit]

Negros First CyberCentre IT and BPO Hub
888 Chinatown Square Premier Mall of Bacolod

Bacolod is the Philippines' third fastest growing economy in terms of information technology (IT) and business process outsourcing (BPO) activities.[48] The city has been recommended by the Information and Communication Technology Office of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP) as the best location in the Visayas for BPO activities.[48] Bacolod ranked 3rd among the top ten "Next Wave Cities" of the Philippines for the best location for BPO and offshoring according to a 2010 report of the Commission on Information and Communications Technology.[49][50] In 2013, the city was declared a "center of excellence" for IT-business process management operations by the DOST, joining the ranks of Metro Manila, Metro Cebu and Clark Freeport Zone.[32]

Among the notable BPO and KPO companies operating in the city are Concentrix, Teleperformance, TTEC, iQor, Transcom, Ubiquity Global Services,[51][52] Panasiatic Solutions,[53] Focus Direct Inc. – Bacolod,[54] Pierre and Paul Solutions Inc.,[54][55] TELESYNERGY Corp. – Bacolod,[56] Hit Rate Solutions/Next Level IT Teleservices Inc.,[57][54] Focusinc Group Corporation (FGC Plus),[58] Pathcutters Philippines Inc.,[59] TeleQuest Voice Services (TQVS),[54][55] ARB Call Facilities Inc., Fair Trade Outsourcing, and Global Strategic Business Process Solutions.

In 2012, a two-hectare (4.9-acre) portion of the four-hectare (9.9-acre) Paglaum Sports Complex was partitioned for the construction of the provincial government-owned Negros First CyberCentre (NFCC) as an IT-BPO Outsourcing Hub with a budget of P674-million. It is located at Lacson corner Hernaez Streets and offers up to 22,000 square meters of mixed IT-BPO and commercial spaces. Its facilities are divided into three sections — Information Technology, Commercial Support Facilities, and Common IT Facilities. It was inaugurated in April 2015 in rites led by President Benigno S. Aquino III.[60] The area was initially a residential zone and has been reclassified as a commercial zone as approved by the Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance.[61]

Along its highways, sugarcane plantations are a typical scene. As of 2003, 7,216 hectares (17,830 acres) of the city's 8,560 hectares (21,200 acres) of agricultural land were still planted with sugarcane. Meanwhile, 915 hectares (2,260 acres) were devoted to rice, 120 hectares (300 acres) to assorted vegetables, 100 hectares (250 acres) to coconut, 43 hectares (110 acres) to banana and 34 hectares (84 acres) to corn.[62]

According to the "Philippine Cities Competitiveness Ranking Project 2005" of Asian Institute of Management (AIM), Bacolod tops the list in terms of infrastructure, ahead of such other mid-size cities like Iligan, Calamba and General Santos. The city also tops the list in terms of quality of life, ahead of such other mid-size cities like San Fernando, Baguio, Iloilo and Lipa. AIM also recognized Bacolod as one of the Top Five most competitive mid-size cities together with Batangas, Iligan, Iloilo, and San Fernando.[63]

Sports[edit]

Football[edit]

Bacolod hosted the 2005 Southeast Asian Games Football tournament, the 2007 ASEAN Football Championship qualification, the 2010 AFC U-16 Championship qualification and the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup qualification play-off first leg was held at the Panaad Stadium where the Philippines won 2–0 over Mongolia.[64] Likewise the city has the home football stadium of the Philippines national football team (Azkals).

The Philippines Football League side Ceres–Negros F.C. is based in the city, playing their home games at the newly renovated Panaad Stadium.

Since Bacolod is also being tagged as a "Football City" in the country,[65] an ordinance was approved by the City Council in June 2015, setting the third week of the month of April every year as the "Bacolod City Football Festival Week".[66]

Ceres-Negros FC is the Philippines Football League 2018 Champion.

Basketball[edit]

Exterior of the La Salle Coliseum

2008 PBA All-Star Weekend was held in the city and since then has been a regular venue of Philippine Basketball Association out-of-town games. Also, the Sandugo Unigames 2012 was hosted by the city participated by various universities around the country notably those who compete in the UAAP.

The city was also the home of the Negros Slashers of the now-defunct Metropolitan Basketball Association, playing their home games at the USLS Coliseum.

Karate[edit]

The 1996 Philippine Karatedo Federation (PKF) National Championships and the 20th PKF National Open 2007 were held in the city. Both events were hosted by La Salle Coliseum of the University of St. La Salle. The tournaments were contested by hundreds of karatekas all over the country.[67][68]

Golf[edit]

There are two major golf courses in the city; the Bacolod Golf and Country Club and the Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club. The city hosted the 61st Philippine Airlines Inter-club Golf Tournament and the 2008 Philippine Amateur Golf Championship. A Golf tournament sponsored by the City Mayor is also held every Masskara.

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Bacolod is home to many mixed martial arts competitions including quarterly fights hosted by the Universal Reality Combat Championship.[69]

Parkour[edit]

The first Parkour team in Negros, known as "Parkour Bacolod", started in late 2007.[70][71]

Culture[edit]

MassKara Festival Street Dancing
Lantern display during Bacolaodiat

Masskara Festival[edit]

The MassKara Festival (Hiligaynon: Pista sang Maskara, Filipino: Fiesta ng Maskara) is an annual festival held on the fourth Sunday of October in Bacolod. Dancers wear masks, which is where the festival gets its name.

Panaad sa Negros Festival[edit]

The Panaad sa Negros Festival, or just the Panaad Festival (sometimes spelled as Pana-ad), is a festival held annually during the month of April. Panaad is the Hiligaynon word for "vow" or "promise"; the festival is a form of thanksgiving to Divine Providence and commemoration of a vow in exchange for a good life.[72]

The celebration is held at the Panaad Park, which also houses the Panaad Stadium, and is participated in by the 13 cities and 19 towns of the province. For this reason, the province dubs it the "mother" of all its festivals.

Bacolaodiat Festival[edit]

Bacolod's Chinese New year Festival. It comes from the word "Bacolod" and "Lao Diat" which means celebration.[73]

Infrastructure[edit]

Panaad Park and Sports Complex[edit]

Football field of the Panaad Stadium located within the Panaad Park and Sports Complex

The Panaad Park and Sports Complex is a multi-purpose park in the city owned by the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental. Situated in the complex is the Panaad Stadium which is currently used mostly for football matches. It is the home stadium of Philippines Football League team Ceres–Negros F.C. It was used for the 2005 South East Asian Games and was the venue of the pre-qualifiers of the 2007 ASEAN Football Championship or ASEAN Cup.

The stadium has a seating capacity of 15,500, but holds around 20,000 people with standing areas. It is unofficially designated as the home stadium of the Philippines national football team. Aside from the football field, it also has a rubberized track oval, an Olympic-size swimming pool and other sports facilities. The stadium is also the home of Panaad sa Negros Festival, a week-long celebration participated in by all cities and municipalities in the province held annually every summer. The festival is highlighted by merry-making, field demonstrations, pageant and concert at the stadium. The stadium itself features replicas of the landmarks of the 13 cities and 19 municipalities of Negros Occidental.

Bacolod Public Plaza[edit]

The Bacolod Public Plaza is one of the notable landmarks in Bacolod, the capital of Negros Occidental, which is found right in the heart of downtown area, very near to the city hall and right across the San Sebastian Cathedral.

The plaza is the celebrated place of MassKara Festival.[74] It is a week-long festival held each year in Bacolod City every third weekend of October nearest October 19, the city's Charter Anniversary. Bacolod public plaza is the final destination of Masskara street dancing competitions which is the highlights of the celebration.

Capitol Park & Lagoon[edit]

Landscape of the Capitol Park and Lagoon front view

The Capitol Park and Lagoon is a provincial park located right in the heart of Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, in the Philippines. One of the landmarks of the park is the carabao (water buffalo) being reared by a woman. This carabao is located at the northern end of the lagoon. On the southern end, there is also another carabao sculpture being pulled by a man. Locals are known to feed pop corns, pop rice, and other edible delicacies sold within the park to the fishes in the lagoon.

Negros Museum[edit]

Negros Museum is a privately owned provincial museum situated in the Negros Occidental Provincial Capitol Complex in Bacolod City, Philippines. The structure was built in 1925 as the Provincial Agriculture Building. Negros Museum Cafe serves the needs of museum goers and walk-in guests, situated in the West Annex of the museum. It includes a separate entrance, which includes an open-air and an in-house station occasionally used for small theater plays and art exhibitions. The cafe and the resident chef serves as the official caterer of the Office of the Governor and the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental for official dignitary functions[75][circular reference]

Paglaum Sports Complex[edit]

The Paglaum Sports Complex is a provincial-owned sports venue adjacent to the Negros Occidental High School established during the 1970s that hosted various football events, such as the 1991 Philippines International Cup and the football event of the 2005 Southeast Asian Games. It also hosted three editions of the Palarong Pambansa (1971, 1974, 1979). However, the stadium became unfit to host football matches following the erection of business establishments around the area. In 2012, a two-hectare portion of the four-hectare complex was partitioned for the construction of the Capitol-owned Negros First CyberCentre (NFCC) as an IT-BPO Outsourcing Hub. As of 2013, the provincial government has been proposing for a renovation of the stadium to serve as alternative venue to Panaad Park and Sports Complex, particularly for football competition. Recently, the Paglaum Sports Complex also serves as an alternative venue to the Bacolod Public Plaza for the MassKara Festival celebration.

Negros Occidental Multi-Purpose Activity Center[edit]

The Negros Occidental Multi-Purpose Activity Center (NOMPAC) is a provincial-owned multi-use gym adjacent to the Capitol Park and Lagoon. It is currently used mostly for basketball, karatedo and boxing matches. Aside from the gym, it also serves as evacuation site of the province during calamities likewise also serves as cultural facilities in many events.

BAYS Center[edit]

The Bacolod Arts & Youth Sports Center (BAYS Center) is a multi-use gym fronting the Bacolod Public Plaza. It is used mostly for basketball, karatedo and boxing matches, and was previously used in events in the city like the MassKara Festival activities and other government related activities like seminars, business and political gatherings.

The gym has a seating capacity of more than a thousand. It is officially designated as the COMELEC tally headquarters for both local and national election in the Philippines.

Art District[edit]

Art District located along Lacson Street is known for its street art mural and graffiti, restaurants and nightlife.[76]

Education[edit]

Colegio San Agustin - Bacolod administration building façade
Mapúa Malayan Digital College – Learning Hub Bacolod

Bacolod currently has 4 large universities and more than a dozen other schools specializing in various courses. Currently, as sanctioned by the Department of Education, all primary and secondary institutions in the city use the K-12 educational system.

The city alone currently hosts four of well-known educational institutions in the nation. These are:

Other noteworthy educational institutions include:

Transportation[edit]

Airports[edit]

The Bacolod-Silay Airport terminal building
Exterior of the former Bacolod City Domestic Airport

The Bacolod–Silay Airport, located in nearby City of Silay, is 15 kilometers north-east from Bacolod. Bacolod is 1 hour by air from Manila, 30 minutes by air from Cebu, 1 hour by air from Cagayan de Oro and 1 hour and 10 minutes by air from Davao City.

Bacolod City Domestic Airport was the former airport serving the general area of Bacolod. It was one of the busiest airports in the Western Visayas region, when Bacolod and Negros Occidental were both still part of it. This airport was later replaced by the new Bacolod–Silay International Airport, located in Silay. It was classified as such by the Air Transportation Office, a body of the Department of Transportation that is responsible for the operations of all other airports in the Philippines except the major international airports. The Bacolod City Domestic Airport ceased operations on January 17, 2008, prior to the opening of the Bacolod–Silay International Airport which began operations the day after.[77]

Ports[edit]

BREDCO Port

Banago Wharf and BREDCO Port are the vessels entry point in Bacolod. It has daily access to Iloilo, with different shipping lines such as 2GO Travel (as relaunched in 2012), Weesam Express, OceanJet, Montenegro Lines, Supercat, FastCat, and Tri-Star Mega Link.

There were also access routes previously to Puerto Princesa via Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, Zamboanga City, Cotabato, Butuan via Cagayan de Oro route, Dipolog, Iligan, Ozamiz, and Surigao City via Cagayan de Oro route.

As of 2012 to present, SuperFerry and Negros Navigation was relaunched into 2GO Travel with routes from Bacolod going Manila, Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro. Bacolod is 18–23 hours from the Port of Manila, 12–15 hours from the Port of Cagayan de Oro, 2-3hrs from Dumangas Port and 1hr from the Port of Iloilo.

Land routes[edit]

Downtown Bacolod street
The Lacson-Circumferential (Bata) Flyover

Bacolod has two main roads, Lacson Street to the north and Araneta Street to the south. The streets in the downtown area are one way, making Bacolod free from traffic congestion. Recently, Bacolod City is experiencing an increase in traffic congestion due to an increase in number of vehicles.[78]

By land-ferry, Bacolod is approximately an hour directly from Iloilo City while by land-RORO-land, Bacolod is approximately 3 hours from Iloilo City via Dumangas route. By land-ferry-land, Bacolod City is approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes from Cebu City via Toledo-San Carlos/Salvador Benedicto route while it takes approximately 6 hours by land-RORO-land via same route. By land-RORO-land, Bacolod is approximately 7 hours and 30 minutes from Cebu City via Tabuelan-Escalante, Toledo-San Carlos/Escalante and Toledo-San Carlos/Canlaon routes. Bacolod to Dumaguete via Mabinay route is approximately 6 hours while via Cadiz-San Carlos route takes approximately 8 hours, both routes going Negros Oriental. Bacolod is 215 kilometres (134 mi) from Dumaguete City via Kabankalan-Mabinay-Bais Road.

Notable personalities[edit]

Sister cities[edit]

Bacolod has the following sister cities:[79][80][81][82][83][84][85][86][87]

Local[edit]

International[edit]

See also[edit]

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External links[edit]