"Within a short time all the islands are going to be crossed with networks of iron rails,
For where rapid
Will go flying,
as someone said. Then, the most beautiful spots of the islands will be accessible to all."
(from Jose Rizal's El Filibusterismo)
|Black lines represent railways in operation during the American|
period (1922) while white dots represent terminal stations
Photo courtesy of Philippine National Railways (PNR)
For the first part of this series (discussing LRT-2 station names), read here.
|A newly acquired MRT-3 train runs past|
Photo courtesy of CRRC
This series continues with MRT Line 3. As of writing, there are thirteen (13) stations in the line. For most people, these stations are common. The names are announced everyday. Again, what is in the names of these stations anyway?
|The "heart" of Quezon City: North Avenue in blue,|
Timog Avenue in green, West Avenue in yellow,
East Avenue in brown, the oval shape on top is
Quezon Memorial Circle
Named after North Avenue, the station does not lie exactly along the said road. It lies along Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA), and a connector road from North Avenue was built to accommodate passengers from the station. The namesake is "North," one of the four cardinal directions or points, and the opposite of South. However, one may observe that while it is called North Avenue, it does not really go north. In order to see why it became North Avenue, one has to tilt the map a little. In 1941, the Frost-Arellano Plan was made with the intent of building a new capital city beyond Manila. This is now Quezon City, named after the president who tried to pursue the project. Interrupted by the war, this new capital was still pursued, with slight modifications to the 1941 plan, in the 1949 Master Plan for the Capital City. Studying maps from the Capital City Planning Commission, it can be seen that the planned "heart" of Quezon City is now the Quezon Memorial Circle. It is to be adjacent a quadrangle that is meant to contain the planned "Central Park," which was not realized. Nevertheless, the roads encompassing this quadrangle are still named after the cardinal directions. North Avenue (because it is in the north of the quadrangle), East Avenue (in the east), West Avenue (in the west), and Timog Avenue (in the south of the quadrangle). The triangles within the quadrangle was also named after the cardinal directions: North Triangle, East Triangle, West Triangle, and, South Triangle.
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Named after Quezon Avenue, the station lies along the said road where Panay Avenue intersects. The avenue, formerly named after Mariano Marcos, was later named after Former President Manuel Luis Quezon (1878 - 1944). Born on 19 August 1878 in what is now Baler, Aurora, his father Lucio raised him to become a soldier like him, while his mother Maria Dolores wanted him to become a priest. He would disappoint both parents when he took up law at the University of Santo Tomas. However, the resumption of the Philippine Revolution prompted Quezon to join the army of President Emilio Aguinaldo. He rose to the rank of major before being ordered by his senior, General Tomas Mascardo, to surrender to the Americans in 1900.
His entry to politics was marked by his victory as Governor of Tayabas (his home province) in 1906. The following year, he was elected in the Philippine Assembly as Tayabas representative. He would serve in this position until 1916, when he was elected to the Senate. Quezon would also be elected as the nation's first Senate President, a position he held until 1935. Among his notable acts as senator include initiating the series of Independence Missions to the United States in 1919. The missions were aimed to lobby in the American Congress for a law granting Philippine independence. However, his growing influence in Filipino politics would be seen in full force with his opposition to the Hare-Hawes-Cutting Act, passed in 1933. The law, passed during the mission led by Speaker Sergio Osmeña and Capiz Representative Manuel Roxas, may have dampened Quezon's appeal as the primary proponent of independence, and his chances to have the highest position in the transition government. When the Philippine legislature rejected the implementation of the law, Quezon set out in 1934 to lobby for a new independence law, which was realized with the passage of the Tydings-McDuffie Act. Despite having only minor changes with the rejected law, the people recognized Quezon's efforts. This led the Nacionalista Party to support Quezon for the presidency, and Osmeña accepted the vice president spot to give way for Quezon. As expected, the tandem won the elections for the mandated Commonwealth (transition government before independence mandated by the act) in 1935, but Quezon faced fierce competition. His former superior, Aguinaldo, and Philippine Independent Church (Iglesia Filipina Independiente) head, Gregorio Aglipay, ran against him. Quezon garnered 68% of the vote, and Osmeña 86.9%.
Among the highlights of Quezon's presidency include the social justice program, the organization of government owned or controlled corporations (GOCCs), a program for economic self-sufficiency (by this time, the Philippines conducts free trade with the United States), women's suffrage, and the establishment of the Institute of National Language (now Komisyon ng Wikang Filipino). Defense issues, however, were paramount throughout Quezon's presidency, and a reserve force of 400,000 and a regular force of 10,000 was mandated to be organized by 1946. Yet, the war in the Pacific began in 1941, just after his successful reelection bid (Quezon obtained 81.8% of the vote). The hastily mobilized troops fought against the Japanese, but their surrender was undertaken six months after the war began. As for Quezon, he was transferred to the United States, where he will die of tuberculosis while in exile in 1944. His vice president, Osmeña, succeeded him.
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Named after Kamuning Road, it was part of the Quezon City's first road network laid in 1939 after a law creating the city was passed (thus, the name Project 1, signifying that it was the first development project for the new city). The name was derived from the Kamuning plant (Murraya paniculata). While there is the notion that there might have been an abundance of Kamuning in the area, since nearby roads are not named after plants but after people (Scout Torillo, Judge Jimenez, etc.), there is also the possibility that it is part of the city's naming convention where local plant names are used (like Molave Street, Tindalo Street, Chico Street, Anonas Street, among others). One of the first establishments in the area was Kamuning Bakery, which was established in 1939 by Attorney Leticia Javier and her husband, Marcelo Javier, Sr.
4. Araneta Center-Cubao Terminal Station
The station combines two place names. Araneta Center is a commercial area in Quezon City developed by J. Amado Araneta (1907 - 1984), who purchased the land in 1952. The Araneta family hails from the Visayas and Mindanao. Also among the more prominent family members would be Gregorio Araneta (1869 - 1930), Vice President of the Malolos Congress, and Secretary of Finance and Justice (1908 - 1913), and Juan Araneta (1852 - 1924), one of the leaders of the Negros Revolution and Secretary of War of the Republic of Negros.
|Araneta Colisuem, the main building of Araneta Center|
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
5. Santolan-Annapolis Station
Photo courtesy of PEFTOK
As for Serrano, he was serving as a lieutenant in the Philippine Constabulary when he became part of the Philippine Expeditionary Force to Korea (PEFTOK) in 1950. His claim to fame was his leading of a five-man commando team in a daring raid of a North Korean unit. They captured up to 77 of the enemy. For his performance in the Korean War (1950 - 1953), he was awarded the Philippine Medal of Valor, the highest military honor for an act of valor within and beyond the call of duty. The second component was named after Annapolis Street. The name was derived from Annapolis, Maryland, temporary capital of the United States in 1783. To date, it is the state capital of Maryland. It is also home to the United States Naval Academy, which is locally known as the name of the city, Annapolis.
|Francisco Ortigas, Sr.|
Photo courtesy of Francisco Ortigas
Named after Ortigas Center, the station does not lie along Ortigas Avenue, a road encompassing the center and extends from Metro Manila to Rizal, but it lies along EDSA. The namesake was Francisco Ortigas, Sr. (1875 - 1935), lawyer, financier, and major partner in the company which took over the former "Hacienda de Mandaloyon." Native of Porac, Pampanga, his family soon moved to Manila where he studied. At Colegio de San Juan de Letran, he had Francisco Imperial and Manuel Quezon, among others, as classmates. In 1896, he finished law at the University of Santo Tomas. The Philippine Revolution led to the dissolution of their law firm. However, in 1899, he was appointed by the Americans as Register of Deeds in the portion of Manila south of the Pasig River. In 1900, he married Julia Vargas (1881 - 1960), who would be known for her advocacy concerning tuberculosis. When he managed to reestablish his law firm, he invited his former classmate, Quezon, to join him. By 1902, Ortigas was appointed Register of Deeds of the entire City of Manila.
Later, he would be involved in the academe as professor at the University of Santo Tomas and lecturer at the University of the Philippines. In 1917, he refused an offer to become a Supreme Court Justice. He would also decline the nomination for President of the University of the Philippines and Secretary of Finance. Despite being recognized for his career, he reasoned that he would not want to take part in a government shuffling positions every time a new administration takes over. Indeed, ever since the Americans shifted the Philippines to a civilian government in 1901, the average length of service for a governor general is more or less two (2) years. In 1920, the Augustinian friars sold their Hacienda de Mandaloyon (a property even bigger than the current Mandaluyong City: 4,033 hectares and 1,125 hectares respectively) to Ortigas and his partner, Dr. Frank Dudley. In 1931, the company taking over the former hacienda was incorporated as the Ortigas, Madrigal y cia., S. en C., which partners included Ortigas himself, then Senate President Quezon, later Senator Vicente Madrigal (1880 - 1972), B. C. M. Johnston, Fulgencio Borromeo (1890 - ?), and Clyde Dewitt. The land was developed into a business district which would be Ortigas Center today. Of course, what is now Ortigas Center is a fraction of the entire hacienda. Ortigas, who was also a philanthropist, donated some of the land he owned (such as in Santolan). Four years later, Ortigas died while having treatment in the United States. Meanwhile, when Madrigal withdrew his share of the company, it was transformed to Ortigas & Company.
|William James Shaw|
Photo courtesy of Manila Nostalgia
Named after Shaw Boulevard, the station is located in the intersection of the said road and EDSA. The name was derived from William James Shaw (1877 - 1939), an American businessman. In order to arrive in Manila, he worked as a busboy in a U.S. Army transport ship. Initially, he worked as timekeeper in a stone quarry at Mariveles, Bataan. He would then engage in various businesses which would later lead him to become one of the owners of Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific Steamship Corporation, a company founded in 1920 to transport goods from the Atlantic to the Pacific through the Panama Canal. However, the company was declared bankrupt in 1922. In the Philippine setting, his claim to fame was the establishment of the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club at Mandaluyong City in 1930, with himself as president. This was in protest against the Manila Golf Club (founded in 1901), of which he was a former member. There is the notion that the name was derived from crows (uwak) which inhabited the area. In the same year, the Philippine Open, Asia's oldest golf tournament, was not held. To date, Wack Wack has been considered as one of the world's best golf courses. Indeed, it was site for the 1977 World Cup, where Filipino golfer "Bantam" Ben Arda (1929 - 2006) finished as second place, his best career finish. It would also be his last World Cup appearance (he participated 16 times).
|Our Lady of Guadalupe|
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Named after Boni Avenue, the station actually lies along EDSA, but it is within the vicinity where Boni Avenue intersects EDSA. The avenue was named after Dr. Bonifacio Javier (1901 - ?), Mandaluyong's first postwar mayor. During the Second World War, he was a guerrilla leader in the area, who became legendary mainly for his above average height. Mandaluyong was liberated from Japanese occupation in 1945. In 1946, he would become mayor. He would serve again from 1947 to 1955, and from 1960 to 1962. By this time, Mandaluyong became one of the more developed municipalities of Rizal Province. Javier was also known as one of the founders of the Philippine Football Association (now Philippine Football Federation) in 1961. In his honor, Jolo Elementary School was renamed Bonifacio Javier Elementary School by law in 1984. Meanwhile, the road which began construction during his administration and finished in 1974 was named Boni Avenue, which was derived from his nickname.
9. Guadalupe Station
Named after Barangay Guadalupe Nuevo, the station also lies along EDSA. The namesake was the Virgin of Guadalupe, also known as Our Lady of Guadalupe, a venerated image of Mary (Mother of Jesus) in Mexico City. In the Philippines, Augustinian friars built a church dedicated to Guadalupe in 1629. The area surrounding the church then became Barrio Guadalupe. While the church was destroyed by earthquake in 1880, it was rebuilt two years later. During the American occupation, a military installation was built near Guadalupe in 1901, and this was Fort Mckinley (later Fort Bonifacio or Bonifacio Global City). As the number of enlisted Filipinos increased, so did the population of Guadalupe as their families began to move in as well. The area nearer to the fort would later be known as Guadalupe Nuevo (New Guadalupe), while the area nearer to the church would become Guadalupe Viejo (Old Guadalupe).
Photo courtesy of Bulacan Provincial Government
Named after Buendia Avenue, the station lies in the intersection of the said road and EDSA. The avenue was named after Nicolas Buendia (1879 - 1949), Bulacan representative in the National Assembly and Senator of the Philippines. He was born in Malolos, Bulacan to Saturnino Buendia and Petrona Buidon on 12 March 1879. He first studied under Teodoro Sandiko (1860 - 1939), who opened a school at Malolos. However, in 1889, Sandiko was forced to leave the Philippines after offending the Spanish colonial government when he taught the Women of Malolos, a group of some 20 women who wanted to be educated, particularly in Spanish. At the age of 16, he participated in the Philippine Revolution, serving as a lieutenant and standard-bearer of Central Battalion (Battalon Central) No. 2, as well as aide-de-camp to General Isidro Torres (1866 - 1928), who was also from Malolos. After the war, he studied at Colegio de San Juan de Letran, where he received a bachelor's degree. By 1910, he finished law and passed the bar. In 1911, he married Godofreda Aldaba Cruz (1894 - ?). He was an active member of the Veteranos de la Revolucion (Veterans of the Revolution), an organization formed by participants of the Philippine Revolution, and one of the founding members of the Iglesia Filipina Independiente (Philippine Independent Church).
From 1902 to 1903, he served as Municipal Secretary of Malolos. In 1907, he was elected Municipal President of Malolos when he ran under the Nacionalista Party. From 1912 to 1916, he served as Municipal Councilor of Malolos. In 1916, he was elected Governor of Bulacan and served until 1919. Among his accomplishments as governor include reducing the province's debt from 249,000 pesos (84.7 million pesos in 2017) to 127,000 pesos (44.5 million pesos in 2017), spend up to 113,000 pesos (63.4 million pesos in 2017) in the province's infrastructure and roadworks, prepare a contingent of Bulacan for the Philippine National Guard (1917), and appropriate money for the construction of Bulacan Provincial Hospital, which was to be named after Fr. Gregorio Crisostomo (1860 - 1918). Fr. Crisostomo turned over his estate to the government in the condition that it will be turned into a hospital. In 1925, he unsuccessfully ran for the position of Bulacan representative against the incumbent Jose Padilla, Sr. (1888 - 1945). In 1934, he was elected as delegate to the Constitutional Convention. The following year, he gained a seat in the newly formed National Assembly as Bulacan representative. In 1941, he would be elected as senator, still running under the Nacionalista Party. However, the war interrupted the Commonwealth government. Buendia, along with his fellow senators, would only begin serving their positions by 1945.
|Gil Puyat, Sr.|
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
11. Ayala Station
|Antonio de Ayala|
Photo courtesy of Wikipilipinas
Photo courtesy of Filipinas Heritage Library
In 1851, the Jesuit estate Hacienda de San Pedro de Makati was acquired by Jose Bonifacio Roxas, son of Domingo Roxas and partner of Antonio de Ayala. Bought for a price of 52,800 pesos (39.3 million pesos in 2017), the Ayala's entry to real estate development was not good at first. Some parts of the property were developed as subdivisions, while some parts were sold at low prices or donated for charity. It would only be later, when Enrique's son-in-law Colonel Joseph McMicking (1908 - 1990) entered the family's business, when Ayala's real estate affairs changed. What remained of the land was developed and became Ayala Center, which forms part of the Makati Central Business District (CBD). By 1992, the family is the only billionaire family in the Philippines, which by this time is headed by Enrique's grandson, Jaime Zobel de Ayala (born 1934).
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Named after Barangay Magallanes in Makati City, the station lies in the vicinity where EDSA and Chino Roces Avenue intersects. The area was named from Ferdinand Magellan's Spanish name, Fernando de Magallanes (1480 - 1521). Magellan was famed for organizing the first recorded circumnavigation of the world (1519 - 1521), which he did not complete. It was his remaining crew, headed by Juan Sebastian Elcano, who finished the circumnavigation.
He was initially in the service of the Portuguese. In 1505, he was among the crew who accompanied Francisco de Almeida (1450 - 1510) in his journey to India and assume office as Portugal's first viceroy in the area. In 1511, Afonso de Albuquerque (1453 - 1515), second viceroy of Portuguese India, commenced the conquest of Malacca (Melaka). Again, Magellan was part of this expedition, where he met Enrique, who he would have baptized as a Christian. Enrique would be with Magellan in all his following missions, albeit as a slave. The following year, he returned to Portugal. However, after being falsely accused of undertaking illegal trade in Morocco, he did not receive any missions until 1515. In 1517, after being denied by the Portuguese government (under King Manuel I) of support for his planned circumnavigation (reaching the "east" by going "west"), he moved to Spain and found favor in King Charles I (Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor). The expedition began on 20 September 1519, and Magellan had to rely much on Enrique for interpretation when they reached the Pacific. However, Magellan would be killed in the Philippines at the Battle of Mactan. Only 18 out of his 276 men returned to Spain. As for Enrique, Magellan's last will shows that he intended to free him from slavery when he dies. Whether or not Enrique was freed by Magellan's remaining crew, he would not be mentioned again in Spanish accounts after their departure from the Philippines. He is also not included in the list of 18 people who survived the expedition and completed the journey around the world.
|William Howard Taft riding a carabao|
Photo courtesy of Philippine History
Named after Taft Avenue, the station lies in the vicinity where Taft Avenue and EDSA intersects. The said road was named after William Howard Taft (1857 - 1930), the 27th President of the United States. Formerly called Calle Rizal, it was expanded during the American period and renamed Manila Road as it extends from Manila to Pasay. When there was a proposal to change the name of Taft Avenue to Jose W. Diokno Avenue, there was fierce opposition that it remains to be Taft Avenue to this day.
Taft was born 15 September 1857 in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1878, he finished at Yale College as second in his class, despite being seen by many as a not-so-brilliant student. In 1880, he earned his law degree from the University of Cincinnati School of Law (now College of Law). Ten years later, he was appointed Solicitor General by President Benjamin Harrison. In 1892, he was appointed a federal judge of the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. He would serve in this position until 1900, when President William Mckinley decided to appoint him as head of the Second Philippine Commission, which shall serve as provisional legislative body of the Philippines. While Taft expected an appointment to the Supreme Court, he accepted the position provided that Mckinley appoint him when there is a vacancy in the Supreme Court. In the commission with Taft were Henry Clay Ide (1844 - 1921), Luke Edward Wright (1846 - 1922), Dean Conant Worcester (1866 - 1924), and Bernard Moses (1846 - 1930). The commission would later have Filipino members, and the head of the commission became an executive position. In effect, Taft became the first civilian Governor General of the Philippines during the American period and serve until 1903. By this time, President Theodore Roosevelt wanted Taft to appoint him in a position in the Supreme Court. However, Taft felt that the work in the Philippines is not yet done. The Philippine Assembly, which would succeed the commission as a legislative body, is not yet being organized and the representatives are not yet being elected. He was bent on increasing Filipino representation in government, albeit he intended to draw them from the elite. In a sense, Roosevelt was maneuvering to prevent a possible opponent in Taft. The American public had not missed Taft's success in the Philippines, and 1904 was an election year. Nevertheless, while Taft did not accept a position in the Supreme Court, he accepted the position of Secretary of War. Since the War Department oversaw Philippine affairs, this meant that he still has involvement in the Philippines despite being recalled to the United States.
Taft returned to the Philippines in 1905, and again in 1907. In the second instance, he opened the Philippine Assembly. Meanwhile, Roosevelt felt that he must uphold his pledge not to run again in 1908. His vice president, Charles Fairbanks, seemed a possible option. However, Roosevelt had not favored the nomination of Fairbanks in the beginning. Determined to choose his successor, Roosevelt supported Taft for the presidency. Thus, he was nominated as presidential candidate of the Republican Party. Taft would go on to win the election with 51.6% of the vote. However, his success in the Philippines was not repeated in America. He would not be successful with his reelection bid in a four-way election which saw Roosevelt running as standard-bearer of a third party (Progressive Party) and Socialist candidate Eugene Debs (1855 - 1926) garnering almost 6% of the vote, the best performance of the socialists since 1900. In 1921, his dream to be in the Supreme Court was fulfilled when President Warren Harding appointed him Chief Justice. His failing health, attributed in part to his weight issues (at 340 pounds and a BMI of 42.3, he became known as the heaviest president to date), caused him to resign from the Supreme Court. He died one month later.
Here are your 13 MRT-3 stations and the history behind the names. What is in a name? A lot, really.
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