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Rizal Park to be built in Australia
« on: June 05, 2009, 04:03:57 PM »
MANILA, Philippines—A 2.2-hectare property in the city of Campbelltown, New South Wales will be developed to become the Rizal Park in Australia, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.

In her report to DFA Secretary Alberto Romulo, Consul General Eva Betita said the Rizal Park will be situated in what used to be an empty reserve owned by the city government.

This decision to build the park started in 1988, when a group of Filipino-Australians and friends petitioned the city council of Campbelltown to name it Rizal Park.

Later, in 2006, a group of five Filipino-Australian associations called the Rizal Park Movement banded together to convert the reserve into a park.

In June 2007, Campbelltown, a prosperous industrial-agricultural town that hosts the third largest concentration of Australian-Filipinos numbering of about 4,108 people, formally designated the Rizal Park reserve into a park that will be funded by the city council.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd gave A$120,000 for the initial construction of the park, to include a playground and picnic facilities for use by the general public. The Campbelltown city council will provide another A$140,000 for further improvements.

The construction plan for the park was presented to Campbelltown Mayor Russell Matheson, Betita, Rizal Park Movement chairperson Lourdes Kaiser, Knight Commander Maximilio Lopez of the Knights of Rizal, and members of the Filipino-Australian Community in Campbelltown last May 29.

The Rizal Park Movement plans to further improve the park with tree planting and landscaping and the construction of shade structures, barbecue facilities, car parking, and a cycle way. The Order of the Knights of Rizal in New South Wales has also committed to commission a statue of Dr. José Rizal to be placed prominently in the area.

The Philippine consulate general in Sydney has been assisting the Rizal Park Movement’s project through endorsements and gathering support from other Filipino-Australian associations throughout the state of New South Wales.(

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