As the Philippines continues to grow – in economy and in population, so do its demands for infrastructure. One rapidly growing hotspot in the country is Metro Cebu.
The economic activity in Cebu is predicted to increase 15 times its level in 2010 by 2050. This prediction was made last 2015 by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), in partnership with Metro Cebu Development and Coordination Board (MCDCB), in their Roadmap Study for Sustainable Urban Development in Metro Cebu.
Should their blueprints be implemented by 2050, there will be a creation of one million jobs and the realization of the immense increase in economic activity.
JICA and MCDCB stated that the Mactan-Cebu link “must be strengthened by adding another bridge infrastructure to meet increasing traffic.” As a solution, they proposed a bridge between Mandaue City and Mactan, and another bridge that will link Cebu and Cordova.
As of date, the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway, operated by Metro Pacific, is scheduled for completion in 2021, and the governments of the Philippines and Japan have formalized the loan agreement involving the 4th Cebu-Mactan Bridge.
At the same time, construction on the 73.75-kilometer Metro Cebu Expressway has also started. The highway will serve as a north-south backbone highway providing a seamless traffic flow from Naga City up to Danao City.
Since the start of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term in 2016, DPWH has completed 435 bridges, 320 flood mitigation structures, 1,439 kilometers of roads, and 7,656 classrooms in Region 7.
While Metro Cebu has shown rapid growth over the years, the rest of Central Visayas is also growing fast. More infrastructure projects are also being implemented and built across the provinces of Cebu, Bohol, Negros Oriental, and Siquijor and its highly-urbanized cities: Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, and Mandaue City.
As part of the continuous growth of provinces and cities in the Visayas, here are 10 other projects that are expected to boost local accessibility, safety, and economy.
1. Cebu-Mactan Bridge (4th) and Coastal Road Construction Project
DPWH, in partnership with the Japanese government, is going to construct the 4th long-span bridge in response to the increasing traffic in Metro Cebu. This bridge, planned to open in 2028, will connect Cebu and the Mactan Economic Zone.
The project comes with two components: the construction of a 3.3-kilometer bridge with an elevated viaduct of 2.86 kilometers and a 4.9-kilometer four-lane coastal road with a 4.751 kilometers elevated viaduct.
2. Metro Cebu Expressway
The Metro Cebu Expressway is a 73.75-kilometer-long standard arterial road that will serve as an alternative north-south backbone highway. It is planned to provide seamless traffic flow from Naga City to Danao City, easing up congestion within Metro Cebu.
The project is divided into three segments. The first segment spans 26.8 kilometers and will connect Minglanila, Talisay, Cebu City, Mandaue, and Consolacio. The second segment, 29.799 kilometers long, will expand it to Danao City. Finally, the third segment, 17.15 kilometers long, will connect it to Naga City.
3. Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEX)
Mentioned earlier, the 8.5-kilometer CCLEX is a bridge that will connect mainland Cebu to Mactan Island via Cebu City South Coastal Road and Cordova. The project is expected to serve 50,000 vehicles daily, and it is meant to be implemented as a toll expressway. The expressway is being developed by Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corporation (CCLEC), a subsidiary of Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation. The bridge will have two lanes of land traffic in each direction and a navigational clearance of 51 meters for shipping traffic.
4. Access Road to Madridejos
Tourists, travelers, and visitors can now also enjoy increased accessibility within the famous Bantayan Island in Cebu. Vehicles can now be driven through the recently completed 5.9-kilometer access road connecting Santa Fe, Bantayan, and Madridejos.
5. Montana-San Juan Buenaventura Road
Bohol also enjoys an improved and concretized road 3.5-kilometer Montana-San Juan Buenaventura Road. The two-lane road provides convenient transportation and easy delivery of goods to tourist destinations and municipalities nearby Baclayon, Bohol.
6. Panglao-Tagbilaran City Offshore Connector Bridge
This 2.71-kilometer bridge is the 3rd to connect Panglao Island and Bohol. It is also part of the Mega Bridge Master Plan, which aims to connect Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao via land travel. The project is still underway, at around 60% of completion. When finished, it will connect Bohol to the island municipalities of Dauis and Panglao through a 1.2-kilometer four lane bridge, two short span bridges, and a 1.3-kilometer access road.
7. Slope Protection along Dumaguete North Road
Rockfall and landslide hazards due to erosion, loose and weathered surfaces, and debris flows have been mitigated along the Dumaguete North Road thanks to the installation of a rockfall barrier.
8. Candoni-Gatuslao-Basay Road
The 8.3-kilometer Candoni-Gatuslao-Basay Road will connect the provinces of Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental via Barangay Gatuslao, Candoni in Negros Occidental to the Municipality of Basay in Negros Oriental. Also known as the “Negros Connector”, the road is expected to boost local tourism and trade.
9. Alcoy Seawall
The Alcoy Seawall is a 637-meter seawall that has been recently completed. The seawall aims to protect the shoreline from erosion and scouring while also preventing flooding. This project is also envisioned to help improve the livelihood of the locals, since fishing boats can use the seawall to access the fish port.
10. Maria Flood Control Project
Inundation and flooding in the coastal areas of Maria, Siquijor have been minimized thanks to the installation of 2,057 hexapods. The town, which is a frequent target of flooding and storm surges, can now have a bit more safety in their homes and livelihoods. The project also included the construction of two bridges that would allow residents and tourists access to destinations even during the high tide.