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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Vigan makes it to the New Wonder Cities

source: Philippine Star

VIGAN, Ilocos Sur – This city has been named one of the New7Wonders cities of the world, 15 years after its inscription in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) list of World Heritage Sites and Monuments.
Joining Vigan in the list of New7Wonders cities are Beirut in Lebanon, Doha (Qatar), Durban (South Africa), Havana (Cuba), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and La Paz (Bolivia).
The winners were named on and YouTube at 3 a.m. yesterday.
In a statement, Vigan City Mayor Eva Medina thanked everyone who voted for their city.
“We hope that this feat will send a stronger message that heritage conservation, interwoven with good governance and community participation, is a very significant tool for development. We did it in Vigan, it can be done by any local government unit,” Medina said.  
Bernard Weber, founder and president of New7Wonders, said they will conduct validation of the winning cities before their inauguration.
“The winners represent the global diversity of urban society. For the first time in human history, more than half of our planet’s population live in cities and this election emphasizes the dramatically challenging character of our changing world,” Weber said during the announcement.
There were 1,200 cities from 220 countries that joined the contest.
More tourists expected
Medina said they will have to prepare for the expected surge of tourists in the city.
The mayor admitted that tourism has been among the major sources of income of locals for the past decade.
“It’s not just the business owners who will benefit from this but also our farmers and fisherfolk who supply major business establishments in the city, as well as the kalesa and tricycle drivers around the Vigan plaza,” Medina said.
She said they also intend to improve infrastructure facilities. 
“The fact that we are expecting more tourists, we have to improve our compliance with the basic needs of our tourists,” she said.

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