Before August became known lately as the month of the Aquinos, (being the month when Benigno Aquino Jr., and his wife Corazon, the former president died) this month has been identified mainly as the month of the first president of the US-sponsored Commonwealth government, the“father of the Philippine national language”, and the “father of Quezon City” Manuel Quezon whose birth and death fall on the same month. (being born on the 1st and died on the 19th) As such, it is but fitting that we dedicate this entry to this feisty character and his contribution to the urban landscape we know today.
portrait of Manuel Quezon at the Malacañang Museum by Fernando Amorsolo
For all the things, good or ill, that have been said about Manuel Luis Quezon, (1878-1944) there can be no denying he was bold enough to envision some grand things for the country, especially as it was preparing for its independence from American rule. One of those visions that he had in mind was a “national capitol” for a nation preparing for her “debut”, so to speak. A national capitol for the Philippines just like Washington, D.C. for the United States and New Delhi for India. So in October 12, 1939, the envisioned capitol city of the Philippines was established, a city we now know today as Quezon City. At the heart of this new city is the national capitol complex divided in 4 quadrants; the centerpiece being the Capitol or Congress building in the middle of an elliptical road. Continue reading