General Santos City

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City of General Santos
Ph seal gensan.gif
Ph locator south cotabato general santos.png
Mayor Pedro B. Acharon Jr. (NPC)
Barangays 26
Physical characteristics
Area 492.86 km²
Total (2000) 411,822
Density 637/km²

General Santos City (Filipino: Lungsod ng Heneral Santos) is a city in the Philippines. Situated in the southern part of the country, in the province of South Cotabato. It is classified as a first class city, having an average annual income of P250 million or more. The city has a population of 411,822 as of the 2000 census, making it one of the most populous cities in the Philippines. It is nicknamed as the "Tuna Capital of the Philippines".

General Santos City is bounded by three municipalities of Sarangani Province and two municipalities of South Cotabato, namely Alabel, Malungon, Maasim, Polomolok and T'boli. The city's economy is primarily agro-industrial. As a component of the SOCCSKSARGEN growth area, it has contributed much to the area's emergence as the country's leading producer of major commodities. Due to its rich soil, good rainfall and typhoon-free climate, the area is the largest producer of corn, coconuts, copra, pineapples, asparagus and rice. The area also produces other high value crops such as exotic fruits, potatoes, vegetables, cut flowers and okra. It accounts for the largest total daily fish landings in the country and is the leading producer of sashimi grade tuna. Residents boast that fish and seafood do not come fresher than in their city.


Geography and Climate

General Santos City lies at the southern part of the Philippines. It is located at 6°7'N 125°10'E. The city is southeast of Manila, southeast of Cebu and southwest of Davao. The municipalities of Alabel, Malungon and Maasim of Sarangani Province and the municipalities of Polomolok and T'boli of South Cotabato surround the city. Fertile agricultural lands at 17,489 hectares are 32.63% of the city's total land area.

Climate is favorable. It is outside of the typhoon belt. Dominated by low plain areas and with evenly distributed rainfall, it is suitable for agricultural-based industries.

General Santos City is politically subdivided into 26 barangays.

  • Baluan
  • Buayan
  • Bula
  • Conel
  • Dadiangas East (Pob.)
  • Katangawan
  • Lagao (1st & 3rd)
  • Labangal
  • Ligaya
  • Mabuhay
  • San Isidro (Lagao 2nd)
  • San Jose
  • Sinawal
  • Tambler
  • Tinagacan
  • Apopong
  • Siguel
  • Upper Labay
  • Batomelong
  • Calumpang
  • City Heights
  • Dadiangas North
  • Dadiangas South
  • Dadiangas West
  • Fatima
  • Olympog

Distribution of Land Area Total Land Area (in hectares) 53,606 has. Built-up Areas 5,843.81

Residential 3,894.01 Commercial 369.07 Institutional 612.8 Industrial 313.84 Livestock 654.09

Special Uses 23,320.95

  • Agro-industrial 405.12
  • Parks & Recreation 271.20
  • Special Use 56.16
  • OGL / Pastureland 16,903.82
  • Vacant Land 6,009.95

Agriculture 15,437.76

  • Crops 14,688.98
  • Livestock 370.72
  • Aquaculture 194.77
  • Farm Trees 183.29

Forest 7,962.66

  • Urban Forest 52.59
  • Agro-forest 7,910.07

Rivers / Creeks, etc. 1,040.82


The historic turn-over of the symbolic key of responsibility by Mayor Santiago to the incoming Mayor-Elect Pedro Acharon, Sr. (1956) in front of the municipal Hall.

On February 27, 1939, General Paulino Santos led the first and largest batch of settlers organized under the National Land Settlement Administration to the shores of Sarangani Bay. The 62 pioneers, who mostly came from Luzon, industriously tilled Cotabato's fertile expanse of land. After this first influx of pioneers, thousands more from Luzon and Visayas migrated into the area.

In January 1948, by virtue of Republic Act No. 82, Buayan District became a full fledged municipality whose territorial boundaries included the present municipalities of Sarangani and South Cotabato Provinces, namely Alabel, Glan, Malapatan, Malungon and Polomolok. NLSA Hospital Administrator Irineo I. Santiago became its first mayor.

Six years later, in June 1954, the Municipality of Buayan was renamed General Santos as a tribute to its great pioneer. This was made possible by Republic Act No. 1107 authored by Congressman Luminog Mangelen of Cotabato Province.

From 1963 to 1967, during the incumbency of Mayor Lucio A. Velayo, an upsurge in the municipality's economy was experienced as several large agri-based corporations such as Dole Philippines, General Milling Corporation and UDAGRI expanded into the area. Although it was then qualified to become a fourth class city, the residents rejected a move by Congressman Salipada Pendatun to convert General Santos into a city and to rename it Rajah Buayan.

Finally, on July 8, 1968, upon approval of Republic Act No. 5412, the Municipality of General Santos was converted into a city while keeping its name. It was inaugurated on September 5 of that year. Antonio C. Acharon became its first city mayor. In 1988, two decades after its inauguration, it was declared as a highly urbanized city.


View of Pioneer Ave. at night

Presence of transportation facilities -- international standard Airport, expanded Makar Wharf, good road network and adequate communication facilities within the city and neighboring places. It is very accessible as the gateway to the Philippines, it has regular air flight, sea travel, and land linkages to major points in the country.

Air Acess in General Santos

General Santos City serves as the inbound destination for the sights, sounds and culture of SOCCSKSARGEN. Air, sea and land transport provides easy access to the key cities in the Philippines and the rest of the world. The City is base to the Philippines' second largest airport-in-area and has one of the most modern seaports in the country today.

  • Air

With a runway that can comfortably accommodate landings of the most modern wide-bodied aircraft. The GSC International Standard Airport can be reached direct from Manila, Cebu, Ilo-ilo or via Zamboanga, Cagayan de Oro and Davao through any Mindanao based flights. Though there are still no direct international flights in the area, Philippine Airlines Air Philippines and Cebu Pacific operate in GenSan, setting links to a wide range of destinations.

Boats near the seashore in General Santos
  • Sea

GenSan's Makar Wharf is considered one of the best in the country. With a 740-meter docking length and a 19-meter width, the wharf connects the City to destinations within and outside the Philippines. Negros Navigation, WG&A and Sulpicio Lines provide the route while Indonesian shipping lines contribute their GenSan-Indonesian route for passenger and cargo traffic.

  • Land
General Santos going to Malapatan, Glan, Sarangani Province

Inbound and around SOCSKSARGEN land travel is a fast and convenient ride. With more than 400 passenger buses and jeepneys wielding routes within, to and from the growth region, getting to your place of destination is a comfort. Tricycles - three wheeled motorcycles with side-cars, are the City's main mode of land transportation and has been in the road since the pioneering times. Air-conditioned taxis and rent-a-cars are also readily available. The Pan-Philippine Highway links GenSan to other Major cities in Mindanao and to the rest of the country.

Infrastructure and Economy

Tuna Export in General Santos City‎

gensan is the wealthiest city in mindanao. The presence of major economic infrastructure support facilities provide the city an edge in terms of comparative advantage due to its standards that are comparable to international benchmarks.

The International Standard Airport, It has a 3,200-meter runway capable of handling wide-bodied jets like Airbus 300 series and Boeing 747. This puts almost all key cities in the Philippines. It currently handles direct flights to Manila and Cebu through Air Philippines, Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific. And it also has connecting flights to Bacolod City and Iloilo City via Cebu.

The world class Fishport Complex has a 750-meter quay, 300-meter wharf for 2,000 GT reefer carriers, refrigeration facilities with 1,500 cold storage capacity, 60 tons/day ice plant, brine, air blast and contact freezers.

The 561-meter Makar Wharf is one of the most important ports in Mindanao. It has been expanded by 151 meters to accommodate more berthing capacity.

The abundant power supply, retailer of the National Power Corporation provides the power requirement of the city.

The communication services offered by major telephone companies. The area is also serviced by Mobile telecommunication system and the availability of internet service providers serve as key to be top of the domestic and international businesses.


There are 59 banks operating in the city composed of 46 commercial banks, 5 savings banks, 1 cooperative and 7 rural banks in 2000. Aside from this, there are 49 pawnshops providing emergency loan assistance and 48 lending institutions.

General Santos City registered 1,505 new medium to large enterprises in 2000. Aggregate investment involved is estimated to be around P 1.899 billion, generating 4,361 new employees. Of the total investments, 76.03% were for social and personal services, 9.77% in wholesale/retail trade business, 4.38% were in manufacturing while the least at 0.02% were invested in mining & quarrying.

Infrastructures/Business Districts

  • Proposed new Business Districts in Gensan City.
  • Proposed new Infrastructures
  • Renovation of the International Airport.
  • Proposed Musical Fountains in Downtown Plaza.
  • Beautification of Freedom Park.
  • Installation of modern Traffic Signal System.


Notre Dame of Dadiangas University

General Santos City houses two universities, numerous colleges and institution. It caters every points of interests of academically-oriented students in the region, produces topnotchers in various board exams mostly agriculture, engineering and education. Moreover, people from the neighboring provinces from South Cotabato, Sarangani Province and Sultan Kudarat came to study mostly in the field of Accountancy, Agriculture/Fisheries, Commerce, Criminology, Education, Engineering, Hotel & Restaurant Management, Nursing, Maritime and other technical courses.

List of the different educational institutions in General Santos City

  • AMA Computer University
  • Brokenshire College of Nursing- GenSan Campus
  • Bula Christian School
  • Bula National High School of Fisheries
  • Dadiangas East Central Elementary School
  • Dadiangas North Elementary School
  • Dadiangas South Central Elementary School
  • Dadiangas West Central Elementary School
  • Fatima National High School
  • Francisco Oringo Sr. Elementary School
  • General Santos City High School
  • General Santos Foundation Inc. (GFI)
  • General Santos Institute of Technology
  • General Santos City SPED Learning Center
  • General Santos Doctors Medical School Foundation, Inc.
  • Golden State College
  • Holy Trinity College of General Santos
  • Hope Christian School
  • Ireneo L. Santiago National High School
  • Joji Ilagan School, Inc.
  • Lagao National High School
  • Labangal National High School
  • Mindanao Baptist College
  • Mindanao Polytechnic College
  • Mindanao State University- CETD High School Department
  • Mindanao State University- Main Campus (Tambler)
  • MSIT (Mindanao School of Information Technology)
  • MTC Academy General Santos
  • Bantilan Entertainment Academy
  • Notre Dame of Dadiangas University- IBED High School Department
  • Notre Dame of Dadiangas University- Marist Avenue
  • Notre Dame of General Santos
  • Notre Dame of prado Campus
  • Philippine Institute of Technology
  • Pyra Tech Computer School
  • Ramon Magsaysay Memorial College
  • Shalom Crest Wizard Academy
  • South Rarex College
  • Statford International School
  • STI College
  • Tinagacan National High School

The University of Santo Tomas will expand their campus in General Santos by 2011 with 800,000 sq. meters. It will be the biggest University in the Mindanao Area.


Television Networks

Shopping Centers


Department Store

  • Happy Shop Department Store
  • JY Family and Friends Department Store
  • Unicorn Warehouse Plaza
  • Unite Department Store

Proposed Mall

  • Island City Mall GenSan
  • SM City GenSan


Down the southern tip of Mindanao, expanding from the basin of Sarangani Bay, lies the City of General Santos - a fortress of modern amenities that is endowed with the beauty of nature and diverse cultures abound. Is a gateway in discovering the boundless beauty of SOCCSKSARGEN Growth Region.

Hotels and Accommodations

  • Dolores Hotels and Resorts - Dolores Anchor Hotel, Dolores Hotel, Dolores Tropicana Resort and Dolores Farm Resort
  • East Asia Royale Hotel
  • Family Country Hotel
  • Hotel Filipino and Restaurant
  • Hotel Sansu
  • La Tiera Del Sur Hotel
  • Matutum Hotel
  • Phela Grande Hotel
  • Pietro's Hotel
  • Princefield Inn
  • Sydney Hotel
  • T'boli Hotel and Resort
  • Tierra Verde Hotel II


The TUNA City pampers its guest with tons and tons of TUNA and other fish delights that gave birth to several eating institutions. Wide range of dining establishments pop-up right into the heart of the city which can fill your cravings with satisfaction beyond capacity with a variety of Mindanaoan, Filipino, Asian and Western delicacies. Fresh-from-the-catch seafoods and right-from-the-harvest agricultural products have perfectly matched to make a savory and sumptuous array of dishes in its various food outlets and restaurants.

Topping the list of must-eats are TUNA and OPAH("Dayana"), two of the best sellers among our local celebrities, which come served as the exciting SUTUKIL:SUGBA (Charcoal-boiled in special sauce, dipped in the requisite Toyomansi), TULA (Soup in ginger, onion, lemon grass, pechay and tomatoes), and KINILAW (Fresh cuts in vinegar, shallots, cucumber and pepper).


Big tuna float during Gensan's Tuna Festival‎

General Santos City celebrates Kalilangan Festival every February 'Kalilangan' means festival, festivity or jubilee. It is a social gathering marked by exchanging of amenities among traditional leaders, elders, allies and subordinates in varying tones. In a broader perspective, Kalilang projects a positive and dynamic meaning for it engulfs the artistic, humane and altruistic aspects of social interaction that takes place in any occasion or celebration. Kalilangan is a noble tradition. It is a complete work of art nourished and nurtured by rich cultural heritage that has withstand the test of time from generation to generation.

It is also a pageantry of unique and colorful ethnic rites, rituals and traditions like marriage celebrations, religious ceremonies, anniversaries, funerals, enthronement of royal dignitaries, thanksgiving and other forms of social, political and economic activities.

It is not just an economic activity, but a continuous season of merriment, gaiety and merrymaking accentuated by sharing of gifts, traditional sports competition, dancing, singing and instrumental rendition and other forms of exhibition games, entertainment and amusement.

Every September a part of the charter celebration. General Santos City is known as the Tuna Capital of the Philippines. Thanksgiving and festivities are being celebrated annually through its Tuna Festival. Focusing on its main industries. Tuna Float is an awesome event to taste also sumptuous tuna treats during the Tuna Culinary Contest.


  • Boxing champ Manny Pacquiao hails from Brgy. Labangal.
  • Tuna export in Gensan is one of the biggest and largest industry in the country and in whole Asia.
  • GenSan is one of the fast growing cities in the Philippines.

External links

Template:Indy Philippine citiesde:General Santos es:General Santos ilo:Ciudad ti General Santos nl:General Santos City ja:ゼネラル・サントス war:Syudad han General Santos

Original Source

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page was adapted from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at General Santos City. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Wikipedia, WikiPilipinas also allows reuse of content made available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike. See full WikiMedia Terms of Use.