- For the municipality in Lanao del Norte, see Bacolod, Lanao del Norte.
Bacolod City is the capital and largest highly urbanized mid-size Philippine city of the province of Negros Occidental. Having a total of 499,497 inhabitants as of August 1,2007, it is the most populous city in the Western Visayas Region. It is notable for its MassKara Festival held during October. Known for being a relatively friendly city, it bears the nickname "City of Smiles." Bacolod City recently topped a survey by MoneySense Magazine as the "Best Place to Live in the Philippines".
HistoryThe city's name is derived from the Hiligaynon word bakolod – meaning "stonehill" – since the settlement was founded in 1770 on a stony, hilly area, now the district of Granada.
Due to Muslim raids in 1787, Bacolod was transferred towards the shoreline. The old site was called Da-an Banwa, meaning "old town".
In 1894, by order of Governor General Claveria, through Negros Island Governor Manuel Valdevieso Morquecho, Bacolod was made the capital of the Province of Negros. Bernardino de los Santos became the first gobernadorcillo and Fray Julian Gonzaga the first parish priest.
The success of the revolution in Bacolod was attributed to the low morale of the local Spanish detachment, due to its defeat in Panay and Luzon and to the psychological warfare waged by Generals Aniceto Lacson and Juan Araneta. In 1897, a battle in Bacolod was fought at Matab-ang River. A year later, on November 5, 1898, the Negrense "Revolucionarios," armed with knives, bolos, spears, and rifle-like nipa stems, and pieces of sawali or amakan mounted on carts, captured the convento where Coronel Isidro de Castro y Cisneros, well-armed cazadores and platoons of civil guards, surrendered. Two days later, on the 7th, most of the revolutionary army gathered together to establish a Provisional Junta and to confirm the elections of Aniceto Lacson as president, Juan Araneta as war-delegate, as well as the other officials.
On March 1899, the American forces led by Colonel James G. Smith occupied Bacolod, the revolutionary capital of the Provisional Republic of Negros.
By virtue of Commonwealth Act No. 326, enacted by the National Assembly, Bacolod was made a chartered city on October 19, 1938.
In World War II, Bacolod City was occupied by Japanese forces on May 21, 1942. The Japanese commanding general seized the Mariano Ramos Ancestral House, home of the first appointed Presidente Municipal of Bacolod, which served as the seat of power and a watchtower over city. The city was liberated by the Filipino and American forces on May 29, 1945. It took time to rebuild Bacolod after liberation. The city's public markets and slaughterhouses were rebuilt during the administration of former mayor Vicente Remitio from 1947 to 1949.
GeographyBacolod is ideally located on a level area, slightly sloping as it extends toward the sea with an average slope of 0.9 percent for the city proper and between 3 to 5 percent for the suburbs. The altitude is 32.8 feet or 10.0 meters above sea level with the Bacolod City Public Plaza as the benchmark. Bacolod has two pronounced seasons, wet and dry. The rainy season starts from May to January of the following year with heavy rains occurring during the months of August and September. Dry season starts from the month of February until the last week of April.
InfrastructureThe city serves as the gateway to the sugar-rich cities and towns of the province. Visitors' facilities abound; modern means of in-land transport can take guests for business or leisure to any point in the Negros Island.
Bacolod City is home to the Panaad Stadium, which has a seating capacity of 15,500, but holds around 20,000 people with standing areas. Equipped with an Olympic-size swimming pool, a rubberized oval field and a "Eucalyptic atmosphere" because it is shaded by a forest of Eucalyptus trees, it became the venue of several National and International events in the country. Beside the Panaad Stadium is the Panaad Park, home of "Panaad sa Negros" - a festival held annually from late April until early May (or after Holy Week). The Panaad Park is a recreational mini forest park that showcases the life, culture, trade, tourism, and cuisine of the Negrense.
LanguagesMost of the residents of Bacolod speak Hiligaynon, which is also referred to as Ilonggo after the neighboring province of Iloilo, where many of the ancestors of the present-day Negrenses originally came from. The rest generally speak Filipino - the national language, and Cebuano. English is considered a second language.
Bacolod as a destination
By airBacolod-Silay City International Airport (ICAO: RPVB, FAA/IATA: BCD) is 15 kilometers north-east from the city. The P4.37-billion airport is capable of handling all-weather and night-landing operations. Its 2,500-meter long and 45-meter wide runway, and 678-meter by 23-meter taxiways can accommodate Airbus A320 family-size aircraft, the Airbus A330 and the Boeing 737, while the apron can hold five aircraft at any one time.
Bacolod City is 45 minutes by air from Ninoy Aquino International Airport and 30 minutes by air from Mactan-Cebu International Airport plus approximately 20 minutes of travel by land since the new airport is now located in Silay City.
By seaThe Port of Bacolod is a major seaport and has daily ferry trips to Iloilo City. There are also access routes to Puerto Princesa City, Cagayan de Oro City and General Santos City. By boat, Bacolod City is 18 hours from the Port of Manila and 45 minutes from the Port of Iloilo.
By landBacolod City has two main roads, Lacson Street to the north and Araneta Street to the south. The city has a good traffic plan lay-out and very seldom has traffic jams. The streets in the downtown area are one way, making Bacolod City free from traffic congestion.
By land-RORO-land, Bacolod City is approximately 3 hours from Iloilo City via Dumangas route. By land-ferry-land, Bacolod City is approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes from Cebu City via Toledo City-San Carlos City-Salvador Benedicto route. By land-RORO-land, Bacolod City is approximately 6 hours and 30 minutes from Cebu City via Tabuelan-Escalante City route.
EconomyAlong its highways, sugarcane plantations are a typical scene. As of 2003, 7,216 hectares of the city’s 8,560 hectares of agricultural land were still planted to sugarcane. Meanwhile, 915 hectares were devoted to rice, 120 hectares to assorted vegetables, 100 hectares to coconut, 43 hectares to banana and 34 hectares to corn. The people are also engaged in livestock, fishing and pottery.
Four call centers were established in the city in 2005. These call centers are being managed by international companies such as Teleperformance, TeleTech, Convergys Philippines and local call center companies - IO Asia and Focus Pacific.
SM Prime Holdings, Inc., the largest mall operator in the Philippines, opened a branch in Bacolod City on March 2, 2007. It has a total land area of 161,096.60 sq.m. and has a total gross floor area of 61,413 sq.m. SM City Bacolod is the third SM mall in the Visayas.
According to the "Philippine Cities Competitiveness Ranking Project 2005" of Asian Institute of Management (AIM), Bacolod tops the list as Number One in terms of infrastructure, ahead of such other mid-size cities like Iligan City, Calamba City, Cagayan de Oro City and General Santos City. Bacolod also tops the list as Number One in terms of quality of life, ahead of such other mid-size cities like San Fernando City, Baguio City, Iloilo City and Lipa City. AIM also recognizes Bacolod as one of the Top Five most competitive mid-size cities together with Batangas City, Iligan City, Iloilo City and San Fernando City.
Bacolod City also received an award from ANVIL (a National Award giving body) for its implementation of laws that can speed up processing of business applications and payments of taxes.
Contemporary eventsBacolod City was the venue of the 2006 Asian Cup Qualifiers and is considered the football City of the Philippines. It is also host to the annual MassKara Festival, which the city is most famous for.
The incumbent mayor of Bacolod City is Evelio Leonardia and the vice mayor is Jude Thaddeus Sayson. Rep. Monico Puentevella is the current representative of the lone district of Bacolod in the Philippine House of Representatives.
23rd SEA GamesBacolod was one of the host cities of the 23rd Southeast Asian Games from November 20 to December 4, 2005. Sports held in the city included boxing at the University of St. La Salle Coliseum, indoor volleyball at West Negros University Gymnasium, beach volleyball at the University of St. La Salle Grounds, weightlifting at Luxur Place, and men's football at Panaad Stadium and Paglaum Sports Complex.
bacolod in Cebuano: Dakbayan sa Bacolod
bacolod in German: Bacolod
bacolod in Spanish: Bacólod
bacolod in Iloko: Ciudad ti Bacolod
bacolod in Italian: Bacolod (Negros Occidental)
bacolod in Pampanga: Bacolod Lakanbalen
bacolod in Lithuanian: Bakolodas
bacolod in Dutch: Bacolod City
bacolod in Japanese: バコロド
bacolod in Polish: Bacolod
bacolod in Portuguese: Bacólod
bacolod in Swedish: Bacolod City
bacolod in Tagalog: Lungsod ng Bacolod
bacolod in Vietnamese: Bacolod
bacolod in Waray (Philippines): Syudad han Bacolod