4th Mandaue-Mactan bridge in the offing
Plans for a fourth bridge connecting mainland Cebu to Mactan Island is now a step closer to implementation.
A study team composed of local officials flew to Japan where they met with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) which presented results of a preliminary study on a Mandaue to Lapu-Lapu link bridge that includes a Mandaue coastal road project.
JICA recommended that the bridge be a single mode bridge type, or just a road bridge.
They also recommended that the route would be from the Mandaue Coastal Road to Quezon National Highway in Lapu-Lapu City which connects to the airport road leading to the Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA).
“It will hopefully divert the traffic from the city’s core and significantly ease congestion. Should the recommendation be accepted by our Philippine Government, the next step will be the feasibility study (FS) to be done as soon as possible,” said Mandaue City Vice Mayor Carlo Fortuna in a Facebook post.
Fortuna is part of the study team that flew to Japan last Monday. The team will stay there for five days.
Other members of the group include Regional Development Council (RDC) 7 Infrastructure Development Committee Head Glenn Soco and Cebu Provincial Government traffic point-person Jonathan “Joy” Tumulak.
The fourth bridge is estimated to cost P6.9 billion.
According to Fortuna, JICA Director General for Infrastructure and Peacebuilding Department Adachi Itsu was “very encouraging” in pushing the project.
In an interview over Facebook messenger, Fortuna told Cebu Daily News that if the project is approved by the national government, it will be implemented through a loan grant by JICA.
Upon approval, a feasibility study will be undertaken by JICA to thresh out details of the project. The FS is expected to take a year and a half.
The fourth bridge was already discussed during the 4th Philippine-Japan High-Level Committee on Infrastructure and Economic Cooperation meeting which was held at the Shangri-La Mactan last February.
During the meeting, Public Works Secretary Mark Villar said they wanted the fourth bridge to have provisions for rail. At that time, the cost was pegged at only P3 billion.
But Villar’s proposal does not conform to the results of the JICA preliminary study which recommended only a single mode bridge.
Soco said they are hopeful that the project will be approved by the national government.
It will be discussed in the next Philippine-Japan High-Level meeting, which will be attended by top ranking officials, including the finance secretary and socio-economic planning secretary to be held in Tokyo, Japan in July.
“We highly need the proposed 4th Mandaue-Mactan Bridge as the two existing bridges have reached its capacity limits already,” Soco told CDN in a Facebook messenger interview.
Soco also welcomed the proposal of JICA to include a Mandaue Coastal Road in the fourth bridge project package in order to decongest traffic in the interior roads of Mandaue City.
It will also complement the Mandaue-Consolacion-Liloan bypass road project, he added.
The project will have to undergo review and approval by the RDC-7 and will need the approval of the local development council of both Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City.
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