New UP campus to rise at Vista City in Dasmariñas, Cavite

MANILA, Philippines – The University of the Philippines (UP) signed on Monday, June 27, a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Vista Land and Lifescapes, Incorporated for the establishment of a new UP campus at Vista City's University Town.

In a statement on Tuesday, June 28, the university said that the UP Technology Innovation campus that will soon rise in Dasmariñas, Cavite is "intended to facilitate collaboration and develop partnerships with industries and business enterprises within Calabarzon for the promotion of education, training, and research in innovation."

In the MOA, Vista Land agreed to donate 5 hectares of land within its University Town "for the purpose of establishing, developing, and operating a [UP] campus in the area."

Vista Land, "at its sole expense", will develop the property and construct the campus' buildings and facilities, after which the development will be turned over to UP through a deed of donation.

In the statement, UP said the idea behind the campus is the university think paper "Knowledge-based Development and Governance: Challenges and Recommendations to the 2016 Presidential Candidates" published last March.

The paper urged the government to "massively invest" in building up the country's human capital and sustaining human and knowledge capital for economic growth. 

The new UP campus "can give its student-technopreneurs a better shot at bringing discoveries, inventions, and designs to the innovation stage and competing on the bigger world stage," according to UP president Alfredo Pascual.

Meanwhile, Vista Land chairman Manuel "Manny" Villar Jr said the campus is "envisioned to become the birthplace of local tech start-ups that will ensure that the Philippines will remain competitive in today's global economy."

Both Pascual and Villar are signatories to the MOA, together with Vista Land CEO Manuel Paolo Villar, and Senator Cynthia Villar.

UP vice president for academic affairs Gisela Concepcion and UP vice president for development Elvira Zamora also witnessed the signing.

Vista City is located in a 1,500-hectare area where Muntinlupa, Las Piñas, Cavite, and Laguna meet.

Aside from University Town, the "integrated urban development" also features Lifestyle Retail, Prime Office Space, Themed Residential Developments, and Leisure components.

The UP Technology Innovation campus is the latest addition to the roster of the state university's new campuses. 

In 2015, UP also announced a campus in Clark Green City, while a new campus in Bonifacio Global City was already turned over to UP in March 2016. – Rappler.com

Jee Y. Geronimo

Jee is part of Rappler's Central Desk, handling most of the world, science, and environment stories on the site. She enjoys listening to podcasts and K-pop, watching Asian dramas, and running long distances. She hopes to visit Israel someday to retrace the steps of her Savior.

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