Aris to expand tourism prospects in 2nd District

By JUNE S. BLANCO

REP. Erico Aristotle Aumentado will meet with national tourism officials in Manila this week to map out plans, explore prospects, and develop new attractions for the 2nd district.

Aumentado says he wants synergetic tourism development so that each town can “sell” the destinations of the other towns – instead of competing with each other for tourists to visit their more or less the same, or similar – attractions.

He also said he will pitch sales for the development of a promontory in Cambugsay that is overlooking the dam, and the paddling on the river for talaba (oysters) downstream in Cambuhat, Buenavista.

He will also arrange with the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) for water-borne adventure tourism in the dam. Just like in Cambuhat, the food will be cooked and prepared by a people’s organization to augment their respective family incomes.

When realized, the people will then experience dragon boat rides, and feast on fresh, savory and organically grown vegetables and fish dishes harvested from farms.

The only “developed” tourism attraction in the district so far, he said, is the Danao Adventure Park and Playground. He lamented that nothing else of tourism value has been developed along the way as interesting stops.

He wants development to be spread wider, especially with the improvement of the Ubay Airport. To boot, Ubay is nearer to the fine white sand beaches in Anda and whatever it is that the towns along the way can develop.

Aris pushes bidding of gensets for D2 islets

By: JUNE S. BLANCO

NOW that the elections are over, Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado of Bohol’s 2nd District vows to roll up his sleeves and resume work interrupted by the election ban.

Aumentado said prior to the campaign period, the bid documents for generators for power plants in seven islets in his district were already out, but the bidding itself was overtaken by the ban.

The solon’s energization program will provide power even to the farthest islets, either by submarine cable as what he did in Mahanay Island, or overhead cables, or if too far from the mainland, by stand-alone generator sets.

To note, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) had provided Aumentado with a copy of the documents that specified the number and capacities of the power generator sets, the islands or islets where these are to be installed, and the mode of transport of the same from Manila to the destinations.

He said his hands will be full these next few days in following up with NGCP to already push through with the bidding.

He emphasized that energization is the key to an island’s development. It will allow students to study at night, their fishermen parents to repair their nets and do other work at night, and run freezers and refrigerators to hold their surplus catch instead of having to sell them cheap.

Up for bidding is the supply, delivery, installation, test, and commissioning of various diesel gensets and associated electrical equipment and balance of plant for the electrification of seven new areas in Bohol under the off-grid electrification project.

The technical specifications include the provision of separate generator control and protection panel to be installed in the containerized pre-fabricated control house, for installation as indicated in attached drawings, and designed to operate in parallel with other generating set or sets in the future.

The gensets required are one 100 kilowatts (kW), two 75 kW, one 50kW, eight 30 kW and two 20 kW diesel engine generating sets and associated electrical equipment for installation in seven separate new plant sites, namely the diesel power plants (DPPs) of Hingutanan, Bilangbilangan II, Malingin, Sagasa, Cataban, Gaus and Maomawan islets.

The document also suggested modes of transportation from the port of Manila to the islets – some through Cebu, others through Tagbilaran, and others directly to the islet concerned, by special trip or dragging.

The project duration is for 300 calendar days effective from the receipt by the winning bidder of the Notice to Proceed (NTPs), and already includes 20 rainy or unworkable days, considered unfavorable for the execution of works at the project sites.

PHL to have ‘eye in sky’ soon

By JUNE S. BLANCO

THE bill seeking to create the Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA) now awaits the signature of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado of Bohol’s 2nd District, chair of the House Committee on Science and Technology, and author of the bill, said the bill is one step towards realization after the Senate passed its own version.

Aumentado said it is high time that the country fully harnesses available resources and advances made in science to provide precision the guide for man that technology can offer.

The solon refers a satellite that the country may launch to provide hairline accuracy for peace and order enforcement, national security, climate change monitoring and hazard management, weather forecasting and communications.

The Philippines, even if located in the Pacific Ring of Fire, remains to be an agricultural country. This means, Aumentado said, the data that such satellite can beam will go a long way towards preparedness for any eventuality in cases of calamities.

At the same time, he said, it can assist in surveillance and even actual operations during events of crime or threats to security.

The Science Education Institute und the Department of Science and Technology is handling the Philippines Space Science Education Program. When the proposed Philippine Spaces Act will be signed by President Duterte, this program will be given focus by the PhilSA.

Bohol bikers celebrate cycling bond in Unity Ride May 25-26

It is the merry month of May again.

And while the fiestas all over Bohol allow the people to shovel into themselves huge cholesterol overloads, local bikers look up to the annual two-day ride that brings them to pedal around the island’s belting road, bond, have good clean fun and detox.

The annual Unity Ride, also known as Bohol 360 this May 25-26 this year is sponsored by TriBohol, the local elite triathlon group, who since the start, wanted to nurture amateur bikers and pedal with them through the 264 kilometer course.

The Unity Ride is a long ride and surviving it is enough of a feat. As to surviving the pain, a perfect fit with the bike helps a lot.

So what is perfect fit? It is your fit and the bike’s adjustments to attain your stance as against the bike geometry.

Considering your height, that means your stand-over-clearance (standing between the frame leaves your groin at least an inch from the frame) and your reach (which is often measured by the tip of your elbows touching the front of the saddle, knuckles reaching the tip of the steering tube). By attaining a good if not a perfect bike fit, it allows one the most comfortable painless ride especially over long distances.

Also, put in the right seat-post height, saddle position, stem length, stem length and right handle bars for long rides.

Having done that, now, gear up.

The month of May happens to be one of the hottest months. A good rash guard or those fitting arm sleeves would be helpful.

Or maybe a generous slap of sunblock on exposed skin. Sun shades.

And bike gloves if you have it. Wearing leggings, cleat shoes and a hydro bottle.

The Unity Ride is a no-helmet, no-ride event, so gear up and more: ready a spare tube and air pump.

Next up, your rig.

Do some bike spot-conditioning. Re-grease, check for chain slack, dampen the creaks, check on the tire pressure.

With over a hundred bikers all together pedaling off from the Rizal Park in Tagbilaran Saturday morning, for newbies and riders who have not gone as far through the highways, learning simple and yet basic group ride etiquette might be of help for a safe, fun and gratifying ride.

We compiled some basic things a biker must do to be in an orderly group ride. Here are some of them.

1. Drafting. Staying very close to the biker ahead of you, riding directly behind on his stream lined airflow reduces your drag, watch out however from half-wheeling. That is, instead of maintaining a healthy and safe distance from the lead, you come so close that your front tire hits the leader’s rear, which could be causing dangerous pile-up crashes.

2. Signals. In group rides, if you are a beginner, it is always advisable to stay at the back of the pack and observe. Even then, chances are, some bikers are on your tail, that allowing them to know what is ahead is more of a safety than courtesy. Extend your right hand when turning left. Extend your right hand when turning right. Raise your left hand, palms flat to signal a stop. Pump your palms below the waits to signal to slow down. Point to a hazard on the road like potholes or stones. Wave your hands on your back to direct the tail to evade an obstacle (follow me). Do not ride more than two abreast, so you can share the road with other drivers. And, maintain constant speed.

3. Do not spit. At the urge of spitting, use the proper hand signal of breaking off to the left or right, check for other bikers behind and spit away from the group riders. Be careful when reentering the group.

4. Be predictable. Grabbing on the brakes unexpectedly, standing up out of the saddle when it isn’t necessary and decreasing speed without alerting others can all lead to a crash when riding in a group.

5. Announce when you are overtaking. In highway group rides, there might be times when you might have to advance to cover a gap in the riding column, use hand signal when breaking off and inform the biker ahead by saying: Biker on the Left, or Biker on the right. Communication is the key here.

6. Leave your aerobars at home. Pack riding is often keeping close distances between bikers so each can ride on the air flow of the leader to reduce drag. Using an aerobar or time trial rigs and putting yourself in that position keeps your hands far from the brakes, lessening your control of the bike immensely.

7. Help other bikers hurdle a climb or navigate a curb. In group rides, the consistent speed often exhilarates newbies that push them to pedal harder and show off. Coaching them on maintaining cadence, using the right gear ratio most often allows them to keep pace and tire less.

8. Give each one responsibility. Long rides can be sustained when everyone helps each other. Take turns in leading the pack, assigning a rider to take the lead for, say three minutes, after which he moves to the left so the one behind him can assume the lead and the last rider on the left can fill in the space vacated by the advancing riders. Rotate and you will find out you can ride faster and wouldn’t even realize you’ve gone that far in so short a time.

9. Wait for others on climbs. Keeping a group together on a climb can be tough. Because of this, avoid racing up long climbs unless it’s been agreed upon that the group plans to regroup at the top. Let the middle of the pack dictate the pace, and everyone adjusting to the pace, so that the slower climbers can be motivated. Help those who have mechanical trouble. For safety reasons, no single rider should be left on the road alone.

10. Maintain good attitude. Sharing with others your love for cycling is part of what makes group rides so much fun. Group rides are a great time to learn from others, make friends and enjoy the camaraderie that can only be shared with other cyclists. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

Assured of win, Aris still “friends” with opponent

By JUNE S. BLANCO

WHEN the Bohol Poll prediction of a landslide his win in the congressional race in the 2nd District comes true, Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado said he will still remain friends with sitting Board Member Agapito Avenido.

“I will offer my hand of friendship, a hand of reconciliation, to Aga,” Aumentado said, calling the latter “his worthy opponent”.

This after the solon got 83% while Avenido managed only 16% in the penultimate election round of the Bohol Polls conducted April 20 to May 7, 2019 by the Holy Name University’s (HNU) Center for Research and Publications (CRP).

Director Ma. Paz Espiritu of the CRP ensured that her team inserted questions on the voters’ preference for congressman of the 2nd District and vice governor in this round before tomorrow’s elections after they somehow “inadvertently” left these out in an earlier round conducted in February to March, the results of which were presented last March 15.

As the CRP boasts of a “scientific method” that the Social Weather Station (SWS) had trained them to do, Aumentado thanked the people of the 2nd District who participated in the polls for their trust and confidence in him, in what he has done for them, and will still do in his coming third term.

Arup presents pre-FS on Bohol-Leyte Link Bridge

By JUNE S. BLANCO

DESIGN giant Arup, with 34 offices worldwide including in Manila, presented April 2 to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Bohol 2nd District Engineering Office (DEO) in Ubay town its pre-feasibility study (FS) for the Bohol-Leyte Link Bridge (BLLB).

Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado who attended the presentation said once constructed, the “ambitious” bridge from Ubay via President Carlos P. Garcia to Maasin City in Southern Leyte will connect Bohol to the rest of the country by land.

Aumentado said the Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded the pre-FS, and a full-blown study will follow.

“The bridge is part of the dream of my father, [former] Gov. Erico Boyles Aumentado, to put Bohol among the fast developing provinces in the country today”, the solon said. The father is his immediate predecessor in the House of Representatives.

After the funding for pre-FS for the BLLB, Aumentado said up next will be the funding for the FS for Bohol-Cebu Friendship Bridge. He expressed gratitude to President Rodrigo Duterte for pushing these major projects for this province.

The BLLB is part of the Infrastructure Preparation and Innovation Facility (IPIF) for roads and bridges of DPWH.

On the other hand, Arup’s website states that the company has been working in the Philippines since 1986 – and established a permanent office in Manila in 1990. It provides total design services to meet the increasing demand for high quality, international standard projects for the country’s growing economy.

Among the prominent buildings it has designed are the Grand Hyatt Metrocenter, the tallest and biggest mixed-use development in the Philippines, and the St Francis Shangri-la Place, the world’s first building to adopt a damped-outrigger system – Arup’s patented viscous damping system.

Aumentado said the BLLB is planned to accommodate power cables as enticement to Bohol locators for the power generation industry.

Bohol should think of the next 10 to 25 years. The current “imported” power from Leyte will not be enough by then, hence two-way cables must be in place to bring power in and also out because Bohol may not use up all the additional generation right away. This way, the generation industry players here have the option to sell their “overproduction” to the national grid.

A stable power supply in place will also be attractive to Bohol locators who are in businesses other that power generation, Aumentado concluded.