Bongbong Marcos breaks ground for Samal-Davao bridge | Inquirer News

Bongbong Marcos breaks ground for Samal-Davao bridge

DAVAO CITY—After four years of preparation since 2018, the multi-billion Samal Island-Davao City (SIDC) Connector project, also known as the Samal-Davao Bridge, finally broke ground on Thursday, giving light to a four-decade dream.

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President Bongbong Marcos led the groundbreaking rites and laid a time capsule with Vice President Sara Duterte and other national and local officials at the Damosa Land Properties in Barangay Hizon, Buhangin District in this city.

In his speech, Marcos thanked the People’s Republic of China for bankrolling the project. He described China as “an active member and has always been a dependable partner in this infrastructure development program.”

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To be constructed for five years at the cost of about P23 billion, 90% of project funding comes from a concessional loan from China. It will be undertaken through a design and build contract with China Road and Bridge Corporation.

Marcos said the project is a testament to the strong and ever-growing foundation of the bilateral relations and cooperation between the Philippines and China.

He credited the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte for starting the project in 2018 through the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) which was then headed by now Senator Mark Villar.

“The commencement of the project today reflects China’s firm commitment to help the Philippine government, and further strengthens the two countries’ relations and bilateral cooperation,” said Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian.

DPWH secretary Manuel Bonoan said the bridge would serve an estimated 25,000 vehicles daily and ease travel into the tourism haven of Samal from 50 minutes via ferry to only five minutes.

“In 5 years, when the bridge is finally completed, the economy of Davao and Samal will grow and the lives of the people here will improve,” Bonoan said.

The DPWH said the project is now at the stage of geotechnical investigation to aid the preparation of a detailed engineering design of the bridge. This will involve boring 97 onshore and offshore holes on the Davao and Samal sides of the planned bridge.

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Bonoan assured that the bridge’s alignment and choice of landing sites carefully considered the options with the least environmental impact and economy in cost.

READ: ‘Build, Build, Build:’ Hits vs hype

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TAGS: bridge, Davao, Marcos, Samal
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