BAYAMBANG, Pangasinan — The 50.23-meter high Saint Vincent Ferrer statue here is the newest Guinness World Record holder for the tallest bamboo sculpture.
“This is really amazing, a wonderful gift to the people of Bayambang. I would like to thank my wife Mary Clare Judith Phyllis. Fond of internet, she saw something that Burma was trying to build a statue made of bamboo around 30 meters high. She said why not build the statue of Saint Vincent Ferrer made of bamboo? And the rest is history, and we have the tallest statue made of (engineered) bamboo,” Mayor Cezar Quiambao said in an interview Monday.
Quiambao said the original plan in 2016 for a new world record was to fly 40,000 sky lanterns to beat Iloilo City’s world record of 18,000 lanterns.
However, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has banned such activity due to its bad effect on the environment, hence, they opted for the statue as suggested by the mayor’s wife.
The materials used for the statue are bamboo and steel, wherein the structure’s bamboo panels have a total weight of 60 tons.
The statue’s highest point is the tip of the right hand; while the foundation of the ‘super structure’ has been engineered on structurally solid ground and was designed to withstand the threat of the strongest wind and flood waters.
“The construction period took 10 months involving 608 strong men and one exceptional woman’; (there was) zero accident/casualty from the beginning to end of construction,” Quiambao said.
He also bared that the detailed design of the sculpture was done through the use of a 3D polygon technology by JQS Builders, the design and fabrication of steelworks by the Far East Industrial Supply & Co. and by the RAA Architects Engineers and Consultants.
Palafox Associates undertook the Comprehensive Land Use Plan, he added.
The unveiling of the town’s patron saint statue, situated at the Saint Vincent Ferrer Prayer Park in Barangay Bani here, was in line with the 405th founding anniversary of the town, as well as the 400th founding anniversary of the Saint Vincent Parish Church and the 600th death anniversary of Saint Vincent Ferrer on April 5.
The Guinness World Records team, which conducted the validation, was led by Adjudicator Swapnil Dangarikar. Aida Lapis, independent forester and bamboo expert, served as the lone witness for the validation; while the surveyor team was headed by Engineer Roger Milla.
The statue project proponents are the Kasama Kita sa Barangay Foundation, Inc., Saint Vincent Parish Church, the Quiambaos, and Hermano Mayor Dr. Henry Fernandez and his wife, Hermana Mayor Julie Fernandez.
“This is a gift to our kababayan. Today is the symbol of total unity of all the people of Bayambang. This is our battlecry, to unite against poverty,” Quiambao earlier said during the unveiling.
Guinness World Records, through Dangarikar, on Friday officially announced that Bayambang has set a new world record as the tallest bamboo sculpture. The proclamation was witnessed by thousands of residents of the town and nearby towns.
The town first set a Guinness World Record in 2014 for the longest barbecue at eight kilometers during the town’s 400th founding anniversary.
Liwayway Yparraguirre / PNA – northboundasia.com