New Clark City

New Clark City to host first Spartan Stadion in the Philippines

The New Clark City Athletics Stadium in Capas, Tarlac is the chosen venue for the Philippines’ first ever Spartan Stadion, which will be held on Saturday, June 11, 2022. This marks the first major sporting event at the New Clark City Athletics Stadium after it reopened its doors to the public last month. Spartan is a series of obstacle races of different lengths and difficulty levels ranging from five kilometers to marathon distances. All Spartan courses are designed to physically challenge every participant, who are assured to go through mud, water, barbed wire and other obstacles. In the Stadion, Spartan Race swaps muddy trails for legendary sports arenas, like the New Clark City Athletics Stadium, letting participants race where the professionals play. Previous Spartan Stadion races have been held at the futuristic AT&T Stadium in Texas, the iconic Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid, Fenway Park in Boston, Stade de France in Paris, and National Stadium in Singapore. Photo caption: BCDA SVP Corporate Services Group Arrey A. Perez (extreme left) talks to the media about what is in store for the New Clark City. “The intensity and excitement of the Philippines’ first-ever Spartan Stadion race is exactly what the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) is looking to bring back in New Clark City, two years after serving as one of the centerpiece venues of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games,” said BCDA Senior Vice President for Corporate Services Group Arrey A. Perez. “Hosting this momentous race cements New Clark City’s profile as a prime venue for sporting events and as an ideal destination for developing strong athletes from all walks of life. We share Spartan Race Philippines’ vision of boosting Filipinos’ confidence in the country’s ability to recover from this health crisis through sports and wellness,” he added. The New Clark City Athletics Stadium is the first-ever sports facility in the Philippines to receive a Class 1 certification from the World Athletics, formerly known as the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). With a 20,000-seating capacity, a nine-lane 400-meter track and field, and a four-lane warm-up track, the stadium served as a venue for the 30th Southeast Asian Games in 2019. It was previously nominated as one of the top 10 best stadiums in the world at the 2019 Stadium of the Year Awards. BCDA’s development partner, MTD Philippines, executed the stadium’s design within a period of 18 months. “After more than 2,790 years, let me just say we’ve just gone full circle. Today, I am proud to announce that the Stadion is now in the Philippines. On the morning of June 11, 2022, Filipino athletes will be gathered here in the historic New Clark City Athletics Stadium in Tarlac,” said Dr. Marc Laurenze Celis, general manager and managing partner at Spartan Race Philippines. Photo caption: Spartan Race Ambassador Kitch Gamilla tries out one of the obstacles at the New Clark City Athletics Stadium. Aside from the Stadion race, the New Clark City Athletics Stadium will also serve as the venue of the Spartan Hurricane Heat Race on Friday, June 10, and the Spartan Kids Qualifying Race on Saturday, June 11. Spartan races are held in the United States and have been franchised to 14 countries including Canada, South Korea, Australia, European countries, and the Philippines. The series include the Super Spartan, the Spartan Beast, the Ultra Beast, the Spartan Sprint, and the Spartan Stadion. Spartan is the world’s leading wellness and endurance brand, with 250 events across more than 40 countries on six continents. Photo caption: Spartan Race Kids Ambassador Nicolette Celis tries out one of the obstacles at the New Clark City Athletics Stadium.

June 16, 2022

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New Clark City roars back into action

TARLAC – Celebrating its return as a hotspot for tourism and sports, New Clark City welcomed back visitors on May 28 and 29 with a vibrant public event packed with music, art, wellness and all things about living a life well lived. The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) rolled out the excitement at New Clark City’s reopening launch entitled, “Bike and Run, Weekend Fun!” highlighted by two cycling events, a fun run, a street concert, and tours of its world-class sports facilities. Athletes, fans, nature lovers, local musicians and Zumba dancers pumped energy back onto the streets and sports arenas of this rising metropolis, two years after closing its doors and restricting access to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic. New Clark City, finished in just 18 months under the Build Build Build agenda of the Duterte administration, was poised to step up hosting of events and activities after it served as a centerpiece venue of the 30th Southeast Asian Games from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11, 2019. Now that quarantine restrictions have eased and the country’s tourism industry is on the rebound, New Clark City is hitting the ground running starting with this weekend’s festivities. “With the reopening celebration, New Clark City’s visitors got a glimpse, if not a reminder, of the promise of New Clark City for the Filipino nation. What we are building here is not just a venue for sightseeing and competitions, but a community where people can enjoy life in what is envisioned to be a smart, resilient and inclusive city of the future,” said Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan, BCDA Officer-in-Charge President and Chief Executive Officer. Over the weekend, hips were shakin’ and groovin’ to free Zumba sessions. Adrenaline was in motion at the ceremonial bike ride and fun run on Saturday, May 28, around New Clark City, wherein bike enthusiasts, runners, participants from partner sports organizations, and some members of the BCDA staff put their endurance to the test. The city’s night scene then came alive with the music of up and coming local bands at the “Twilight Delight” concert, showcasing the artistic talents and culture of Central Luzon. Food trucks were also on hand, serving tasty treats as spectators enjoyed the show. Come Sunday morning, May 29, the competition switched to high gear at the first-ever New Clark City Cycling Race organized by sportswear company Twin Cycle Gear (TCG). Upstart cyclists as young as 18 years old up to the “masters” aged 49 and above pushed the pedal to the metal in their respective age bracket races. Art in the city Aside from sports and outdoor activities, visitors were also able to see up close the artworks of New Clark City against breathtaking vistas of nature – a stunning combination that gives this rising metropolis its unique cultural identity. The 4.5-hectare River Park features art installations and sculptures of Kenneth Cobonpue, Bernardo Pacquing and Bea Valdes. Just outside the park at the Aquatics Center rotunda is Jude Tiotuico’s opus, which serves as a tribute to Filipino swimmers. Viewing decks were opened to visitors at both the Athletics Stadium and Aquatics Center, which are architectural masterpieces themselves. In 2021, the Athletics Stadium was given a Highly Commended recognition by the World Architecture Forum (WAF) in the Completed Buildings – Sport Category. The Aquatics Center, meanwhile, features a prominent roof design inspired by the baklad, or the woven fishnet of local fishermen, as well as Capiz shells. “New Clark City is building upon its heritage as a host venue of the 2019 SEA Games. The sports facilities were all built for the Filipino athlete and, of course, the Filipino people. By making the sports venues here accessible to the public, we want more of our countrymen to experience the same kind of excitement and national pride that was felt during the Games,” Batuhan said. The public can visit and enjoy New Clark City every weekend – for free. From Metro Manila, New Clark City is accessible via the seamless connection from North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) to Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) through the Dolores or Concepcion Exit. Travel time will be even faster as the SCTEX to New Clark City access road will soon be opened to the public. New Clark City is also available to local and foreign air travelers through the nearby Clark International Airport. Building up excitement Despite its limited use over the past two years, Batuhan assured that the facilities at New Clark City have been well-maintained. Even before restrictions were eased to Alert Level 1, the Aquatics Center last year hosted two sports bubbles, specifically the pre-Olympic swimming camp of the Israeli swimming team and the PSI National Swimming Selection Meet. More events have been lined up in New Clark City since then. New Clark City also immediately bounced back and resumed the implementation of projects, including the construction of the National Academy of Sports and other infrastructure developments. Batuhan said, “We at the BCDA invite the Filipino people to come over and experience New Clark City. Now that we have reopened its doors to the public, the action and excitement in New Clark City only gets better from here.”   Bike enthusiasts, runners and participants from partner sports organizations join the fun run and bike event after the unveiling of the ceremonial banner for the reopening of New Clark City. Dancers and fitness buffs participate in the first of a series of free Zumba sessions as part of the New Clark City grand reopening weekend event on May 28 to 29, 2022. BCDA photo The musical talents of Central Luzon hit centerstage at the “Twilight Delight” concert held during New Clark City’s grand reopening weekend. BCDA photo New Clark City’s first-ever cycling event, organized by Twin Cycle Gear (TCG) cycling apparel, rolls out on the second day of the rising metropolis’ grand reopening weekend. BCDA photo Early morning joggers are welcome on weekends at New Clark City, which reopened after two years of limited access due to the pandemic. BCDA photo Cycling enthusiasts enjoy a leisurely bike ride around the reopened New Clark City. BCDA photo Visitors take a relaxing evening break at the River Park of the newly reopened New Clark City. Art installations and sculptures of Kenneth Cobonpue, Bernardo Pacquing and Bea Valdes are on display at the River Park. BCDA photo

May 30, 2022

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BCDA to implement UK sustainability plan in New Clark City

The British Embassy Manila has turned over its Global Future Cities Programme (GFCP) final reports to the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), paving the way for the implementation of an integrated sustainability plan at New Clark City in Tarlac. The ceremonial turnover was accompanied by the presentation of the architectural scale model for the sustainable and climate-responsive New Clark City Central Park, a 44.8-hectare open recreational space which will become one of the largest public parks in the Philippines. As a nod to the significance of the event, the turnover was held on April 29, just moments before BCDA’s 30th anniversary celebration with employees, management, British embassy dignitaries and other guests in this rising metropolis of the future. Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan, BCDA’s Officer-in-Charge President and CEO, formally received the final reports and scale model from Alistair White, deputy head of mission of the British Embassy Manila, during ceremonial rites at the BCDA office in Clark Global City. It marked the delivery of commitments under the memorandum of understanding (MOU) that BCDA signed with the embassy, through the United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (UK FCDO), in September 2020. The outcome of these reports is an Integrated Sustainability Plan covering the Central Park design, a 33.89-hectare affordable housing project, and the establishment of a sustainability unit in New Clark City. “BCDA is honored to receive the scale model and GFCP final reports from the British Embassy Manila. This body of knowledge will provide us an invaluable blueprint to achieve the vision of New Clark City as a robust, thriving urban center without the blight. We will now move forward with more confidence and guidance in building New Clark City as a sustainable, green and resilient growth center for all Filipinos,” Batuhan said. UK FCDO, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), their project delivery team, and BCDA technical staff developed the integrated plan through multiple consultations using a participatory design process with stakeholders, project partners and BCDA Management. Ensuring that the outputs would be reflective of the community’s sentiments, feedback was incorporated from representatives in the academe, business, sports and tourism sectors, partner government agencies, and more. “The Global Future Cities programme of the FCDO was designed to help urban cities reduce poverty and gender inequality, have cleaner air and safer environments that are resilient to disasters and crises. And I’m delighted to know that we have taken huge strides towards those goals since the signing of our MOU in September 2020,” White said. New Clark City, envisioned as a model economic hub outside of Metro Manila, was selected as a pilot area of the GFCP, an official development assistance (ODA) technical assistance program that supports sustainable and inclusive development in 19 cities in 10 countries worldwide. One key outcome of the report is the setup and action plan of a sustainability unit in New Clark City. This early, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are already being integrated into BCDA’s programs and projects as part of its performance scorecard, namely the ones for: a) industry, innovation and infrastructure; b) decent work and economic growth; c) good health and well-being; d) partnerships for the goals; and e) sustainable cities and communities. White noted that the completion of the framework establishing the sustainability unit “will make BCDA as the first-ever government organisation to localise the SDGs and embed sustainability principles at the very core of your operations.” Under the New Clark City master plan, 60 percent of the 9,450-hectare land area is reserved for forests, open spaces and parks. Meanwhile, only 40 percent will serve as the developable area. Unveiling the future Casting a vision of what lies ahead for New Clark City, White and BCDA Chairman of the Board Gregorio Garcia led the unveiling of the architectural scale model of the Central Park development. Set to rise at the heart of the metropolis, New Clark City Central Park is designed to reduce urban environmental risks by considering the existing topography, biodiversity, water resources and drainage networks. It prominently features a lake that functions as a water retention pond to mitigate flooding, and serve as an ecologically managed area for the preservation of natural habitats. A “no-cut policy” will be enforced in the park for threatened tree species, based on classifications by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). As a green lung, the area can serve as a carbon sink that absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and converts it into oxygen.

May 5, 2022

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Int’l tourism industry leaders tour Clark, New Clark City

Delegates of the 21st World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) Global Summit in Manila visit the New Clark City Athletics Stadium as part of their investment tour of Clark and New Clark City on April 23, 2022. The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and its subsidiary, the Clark Development Corp. (CDC), hosted on April 23 an international delegation of travel industry leaders from the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the global body representing the travel and tourism private sector and its industries, in an investment tour of New Clark City and the Clark Freeport Zone. The investment tour was the final activity for delegates of the 21st World Travel and Tourism Council Global Summit held in the Philippines from April 20 to 22, the council’s second major in-person gathering since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. WTTC delegates were given presentations at the new Clark International Airport passenger terminal, and tours of the Clark Freeport Zone and New Clark City, where the closing ceremony was held. The new Clark terminal, an airport finalist in the 2021 Prix Versailles Architecture and Design awards, will open up increased travel, business and mobility north of Metro Manila. Seeking to showcase developments and attract investments in Clark and New Clark City, the activity was organized by BCDA, CDC, the Department of Tourism (DoT), the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), and the Luzon International Premiere Airport Development (LIPAD) Corp., BCDA’s operations and maintenance provider for the new Clark terminal. Clark and New Clark City were the key investment destinations showcased for the summit attendees, whose tour itinerary primarily included top Philippine tourist attractions such as Boracay Island in Aklan and El Nido, Palawan. The BCDA, CDC and the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), an affiliate of the BCDA Group, were among the government agencies that presented investment offerings to the delegates. Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan, BCDA Officer-in-Charge President and Chief Executive Officer, said the WTTC visit came at a perfect time as Clark and New Clark City are playing increasingly critical roles in enabling the local tourism industry and the Philippine economy transition to the new normal. “The BCDA has always believed that the vision for New Clark City as a smart, resilient, sustainable and inclusive metropolis of the future deserves to be on the world stage. What better way to do this than to let international tourism leaders experience in person the excitement that is building here in New Clark City. We at the BCDA are thrilled to host our WTTC guests and show them how far we’ve come in making this vision a reality,” Batuhan said. Batuhan added, “Opportunities for travel, sports tourism and strategic investing will become even more accessible after New Clark City reopens its doors to the public, and when the new Clark International Airport Terminal begins operations in the coming weeks.” For his part, CDC President and Chief Executive Officer Manuel R. Gaerlan said, “We are delighted to welcome the World Travel and Tourism Council delegates to the Clark Freeport Zone. Their presence provides us with an excellent opportunity to highlight the exciting tourism developments in Clark. At the same time, we hope that their visit to the Freeport will underscore Clark’s potential as a leading business location, with its stable investment climate and world-class facilities and utilities. We look forward to fostering a meaningful partnership with the members of WTTC and usher in more business opportunities and possibilities in Clark.” Delegates were given a rolling tour of sites of interest in Clark, covering hotels, resorts, tourist sites, luxury and recreational facilities, and corporate offices. CDC continues its rise as a prime tourism and commercial hub outside of Metro Manila, with over 1,100 business locators setting up shop in the freeport. For the New Clark City leg of the investment tour, the spotlight was also on world-class sports facilities in the rising metropolis, including the Fédération Internationale de Natation’s (FINA)- approved Aquatics Center and the 525-room Athletes’ Village. New Clark City’s sports complex was a centerpiece venue of the 30th Southeast Asian Games. The investment tour wrapped up at the Athletics Stadium, a Class 1 sports facility certified by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), which recently received a highly commended nod from the World Architecture Festival (WAF) in the Completed Buildings – Sport Category. During the closing ceremony, delegates were treated to assorted Kapampangan and Filipino delicacies for a satisfying taste of the local cuisine and culture. Engr. Joshua Bingcang, SVP of BCDA’s Conversion and Development Group, presents investment offerings in New Clark City to delegates of the 21st World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) Global Summit during their visit to the new Clark International Airport terminal on April 23, 2022. BCDA photo Delegates of the 21st World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) Global Summit, Philippine government officials and private sector partners listen to investment offerings at the Subic-Clark-Tarlac corridor during their investment tour of Clark and New Clark City on April 23, 2022.

April 24, 2022

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BCDA, CNLCSCA ink deal for swim events at New Clark City

BCDA Executive Vice President and COO Aileen R. Zosa (second from right), representing BCDA President and CEO Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan, and CNLCSCA Secretary General Rolando Dela Cruz (second from left) lead the ceremonial signing of the memorandum of understanding for the use of sports facilities in New Clark City. BCDA SVP for Corporate Services Arrey Perez (rightmost) and CNLCSCA Director and AC Dax Aquatics Swim Club Head Coach Jensen “Dax” Halili (leftmost) serve as witnesses. The signing event was held on April 22, 2022 at the Aquatics Center of New Clark City, Tarlac. The Central Northern Luzon-CAR Swimming Coaches Association (CNLCSCA) signed Friday a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) to promote and hold various sports events at New Clark City in Tarlac. The agreement paved the way for the resumption of CNLCSCA’s grassroots swimming series, which was halted for over two years with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hosted by the Angeles City-based AC Dax Aquatics Swim Club, the 80th CNLCSCA Swim Series will commence Saturday at the New Clark City Aquatics Center, with 650 participants from Central and North Luzon, Cordillera Administrative Region, as well as some swimmers from Metro Manila. BCDA Officer-in-Charge President and CEO Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan, represented by Executive Vice President Aileen R. Zosa, and CNLCSCA Secretary General Rolando Dela Cruz led the signing of the MOU, which provides for collaboration over a period of one year, and renewable for another year. “We at the BCDA would like to thank CNLCSCA for choosing New Clark City as your venue of choice for competitions and events. As restrictions continue to ease, BCDA will ensure that this world-class facility remains accessible to athletes of all ages and backgrounds,” Zosa said. Acknowledging CNLCSCA’s efforts to develop grassroots athletes, Zosa said, “We hope to bear witness to the emergence of a new generation of talented, promising, and outstanding swimmers who can compete on the national and international stage.” New Clark City, BCDA’s inclusive, resilient, and sustainable development project north of Metro Manila, remains ready for sporting events amid the pandemic. Its sports complex includes the Fédération Internationale de Natation’s (FINA)- approved Aquatics Center, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)- certified Athletics Stadium, and the 525-room Athletes’ Village. “By incredibly hosting the 30th Southeast Asian Games, we believe that New Clark City is a really good venue for promoting our goals of developing the grassroots program benefiting our athletes. We want them to experience how it is like being in a place where magnificent opportunities are possible,” Dela Cruz said. Comeback of competitive swimming Following FINA competition rules, the 80th CNLCSCA Swim Series will be conducted with timed finals based on the participants’ age groups. Jensen “Dax” Halili, CNLCSCA director and the head coach of the AC Dax Aquatics Swim Club, expressed excitement about the return of competitive swimming for local swimmers, with New Clark City as the venue. “There will be more than 600 swimmers who will participate from different walks of life. We believe that they truly need this boost and motivation amidst the pandemic by competing in our world-class facilities,” Halili said. Health and safety protocols will be strictly enforced during the swim series to protect all participants, coaches, and staff.

April 23, 2022

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Finis partners with BCDA for use of New Clark City sports facilities

BCDA Officer-in-Charge President and CEO Atty. Aristotle B. Batuhan and Finis Philippines Managing Director Vince Garcia (third and fourth from right, respectively) on March 25, 2022 led the signing of the MOU and letter agreement between BCDA and Finis Philippines for the promotion and use of sports facilities in New Clark City. BCDA SVP for Corporate Services Arrey Perez (second from right) and Finis Philippines Director Marieta Herranz (second from left) served as witnesses. Elite swimmers Kyla Soguilon (leftmost) and Jasmine Mojdeh (rightmost) were in attendance to show their support. Giving a boost to Philippine sports amid the country’s transition to the new normal, swim gear company Finis Philippines has partnered with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) to jumpstart sports activities and deliver grassroots competitions at New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac. BCDA Officer-in-Charge President and Chief Executive Officer Atty. Aristotle. B. Batuhan and Finis Philippines Managing Director Vince Garcia on Friday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signaling the start of collaborative efforts to promote New Clark City and to hold various events in the sports facilities in the area. Under the MOU, both parties are eyeing sustained cooperation over a one-year period, and renewable for another year. “We at the BCDA would like to thank Finis Philippines for choosing New Clark City as their venue of choice for its competitions and training camps. With the country now shifting to the new normal, the BCDA is looking forward to opening its doors to more swimmers and athletes in New Clark City, giving them access to world-class sport facilities,” Batuhan said. Positioned as the new premiere sports destination in the country, the New Clark City sports complex is the first major sports hub built by the government since the completion of the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in 1934. This consists of the Fédération Internationale de Natation’s (FINA)- approved Aquatics Center, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)- certified Athletics Stadium, and the 525-room Athletes’ Village accommodation facility. Finis Philippines is the sole authorized distributor of US-based swim gear brand Finis, which specializes in technical devices used for swim training and competition, as well as technical swimwear. Its training products are widely used by elite swimmers and swim coaches in the US, Australia, Europe and Asia. “Finis exudes elite swimming since all its training gear innovations are developed to make the best of the best. We only find it fitting that we kick off our very own swim competitions with the best and only global standard facility in our nation. This is precisely why we chose BCDA and its New Clark City Aquatics Center,” Garcia said. Elite Filipino swimmers were in attendance at the Aquatics Center as a show of support for the partnership between BCDA and Finis. They include Kyla Soguilon, multiple winner of the Athlete of the Year award by the Philippine Sportswriters Association, and national swimming team record holder Jasmine Mojdeh. Competitions for adults, kids Also during Friday’s event, BCDA and Finis signed the letter agreement for the hosting of the 2022 Short Course Swim Competition Series – Luzon leg on March 26 to 27, and the first Kids of Steel (KOS) Triathlon on March 27 at the New Clark City Aquatics Center. The two-day short swim competition series’ heats will have timed finals, sorted into eight age groups based on the participant’s age as of December 31, 2022. The best swimmers in each category will have a chance to compete for the Finis National Finals this June, also at the New Clark City Aquatics Center. Meanwhile, the KOS Triathlon, officially sanctioned by the Triathlon Association of the Philippines (TRAP), will continue the grassroots level of scouting potential young triathletes. Promising participants may be asked to join the developmental training program of TRAP. “Our hearts go out to all kids that were cooped up for two years. It has affected their social skills in interacting with other kids, as well as other people. When Level 1 restrictions of the pandemic were announced, we thought that it was the perfect time to have the kids to finally come out and play. Sports is very important to hone the life skills of kids and we should all nurture that,” Garcia said. Garcia added that, ”Once we get our momentum, we have other sports to host in the near future. In the pipelines are the Finis Long Course Swim Competition Series, Open Water Swim Races, Aquathlons, and lots of swim-related training clinics to develop everyone to love the sport of swimming.” To protect the health of the staff and participants, BCDA and Finis assured that minimum health and safety protocols will be strictly implemented during the events.  

March 26, 2022

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