SP calls for more discussions, in-depth study on proposed transfer of XU to Manresa

THE 19th City Council during its regular session Monday, November 15, presided over by Councilor Edna M. Dahino, adopted a resolution earnestly requesting the Superior General of the Society of Jesus in Rome, the leadership of Xavier University (XU) and the XU Board of Trustees to conduct another round of in-depth discussion and consultation with stakeholders affected by the proposed transfer of XU main campus from Corrales Avenue to the Manresa Heights area in Upper Carmen.

This after Councilor Ian Mark Q. Nacaya in his special report presented the position and arguments raised by the former Archbishop of Cagayan de Oro Antonio Ledesma over the proposal approved by the XU Board of Trustees in September 2018.

The archbishop cited in his letter it is only at present since July 2019 that the XU community alumni, faculty, students and local government officials have been informed and given some overall picture of the proposal but the more detailed plan was reportedly still being worked out.

The maps of the proposed changes in the old and new campuses were flashed on the screen but copies of which have not been released for further scrutiny by concerned parties, he further lamented.

There are a number of salient points in the position paper and other reading materials submitted by the archbishop but the one that was given primary focus by Nacaya was the location acceptability of the proposal as this concerns the greatest asset of the university which is its present downtown location at the Divisoria area, the original university town of Cagayan de Oro.

According to Archbishop Ledesma, many jeepney routes coming from all points of the city pass in front of Xavier University making it accessible to most students who commute by public transport. On the other hand, the proposed main campus in Manresa located on the western upland area of the city would not be easily accessible to students coming from the eastern, northern and southern parts of the city. They would have to take an additional jeepney ride, he explained.

The former church official likewise pointed out the long traffic line already experienced by commuters coming from Manresa, Xavier Estates, Xavier Heights, Pueblo de Oro subdivision and Lumbia.

Since the road going up to Manresa around the Pryce Hotel vicinity has several choke points allowing only two-lane traffic, the scenario is expected to worsen when ten thousand more students will be required to travel the said route every day or as soon as the supposed transfer will be realized, he further pointed out.

Considering Manresa site itself is now associated with the upside housing section of the city especially after typhoon Sendong, the radical move to transfer the main campus may compromise XU’s mission of reaching out to ordinary students, he added.

These and other relevant salient points have to be discussed and studied further, Nacaya manifested.