Megaworld Corp. plans to include museums in its integrated townships, in a bid to promote local culture and tourism which would, in turn, drive more foot traffic into its developments.

In a statement issued Friday, the Andrew L. Tan-led firm said it recently opened the P110-million Iloilo Museum of Contemporary Art (ILOMOCA) inside the 72-hectare Iloilo Business Park in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.

The 3,000-square meter museum has three main galleries that feature art by national artists and Ilonggo artists.

“ILOMOCA is a concrete manifestation of our goal to create urban townships that have their own charm and character. We want to curate our developments in such a way that they seamlessly blend with the local culture and promote tourism,” Megaworld Senior Vice-President Kevin Andrew L. Tan said in a statement.

Mr. Tan noted that incorporating such features beyond shopping and dining concepts drive more people into Megaworld’s developments.

“During the past years, we saw the influx of tourists in our townships, particularly in our lifestyle malls, because of what we offer beyond shopping and dining. At Venice Grand Canal in McKinley Hill, for example, visitors from various parts of the country and the world have come to see the beautiful architecture, and they end up dining and shopping in the mall,” he said.

Following ILOMOCA, the company will open museums in its 35.6-hectare township called Capital Town in San Fernando, Pampanga, and in the 30-hectare Mactan Newtown in Mactan, Cebu.

The mixed-use estate in San Fernando rises on what used to be the estate of the Pampanga Sugar Development Co., so its museum will focus on the sugar company and and will showcase artifacts of the old sugar central. The structure will be integrated with the proposed mall in Capital Town.

For the museum in Mactan Newtown, Megaworld will focus on the events surrounding the Battle of Mactan, given its proximity to the Lapu-Lapu and Mactan Shrines.

Aside from museums, Megaworld has also been putting up art installations across its integrated townships to promote art and design.

“In every township that we build, we want to see arts, culture, history and heritage to be part of the development’s overall character. This way, we don’t only build communities. We build destinations that promote tourism,” Mr. Tan said.

Megaworld is the real estate arm of Alliance Global Group, Inc. In the first nine months of 2017, the company booked an 11% increase in attributable profit to P9.98 billion, on the back of a 5.45% increase in revenues to P35.43 billion during the period.

Shares in Megaworld shed 10 centavos or 2.1% to close at P4.66 apiece at the stock exchange on Friday. — Arra B. Francia