Soon it might be possible to drive straight from Manila to Mindanao without having to use the potential car-damaging (Salt water) Ro-Ro (Roll-on, Roll-off) Ferry system.
Department of Finance (DOF) Undersecretary Bayani Agabin – speaking for DOF Secretary Carlos Dominguez – announced in a speech on April 19 in Cebu City,
that the government plans to build eight major bridges that will connect Luzon with more islands in Visayas and the main island of Mindanao. The proposed bridges include:
- An 18.2km bridge connecting the Southern tip of Luzon (Sorsogon Province) to the Northern tip of Samar island. From there, Filipinos who want to try this ultimate road-trip can take the existing San Juanico Bridge from Samar to Leyte island, then drive to the Southern tip of Leyte to:
- A 20km underwater tunnel/long-span bridge between Leyte to the main island of MIndanao (Surigao del Norte). Road trippers can also opt to head West instead of South and cross over through:
- Two bridges connecting:
- The Southern tip of Leyte to Lapinig Island (East of Bohol) – spanning 18km between the two islands, and;
- Lapinig Island to Bohol – a short 1km hop.
- Keep going West and you’ll find a 24.5km bridge connecting Cebu and Bohol, and another;
- 5.5km bridge connecting Cebu and Negros;
- Which allows you to cross Negros Oriental into Occidental before finding A 12.3 bridge connecting Negros island to Guimaras island which leads to the last bridge;
- A 5.7km bridge connecting Guimaras to the island of Panay – specifically Iloilo – allowing you to drive through to Capiz and Aklan.
Guess what island is at the end of Panay – sadly no bridge there.
DOF Undersecretary Agabin went on to say that the current administration is preparing proposals for the 8 bridges which has an estimated cost of PhP 269.19 Billion. Once submitted the DOF expects the bridges to be green lit by the Investment Coordination Committee. They cited the strength of the current economy thanks to the various Tax reform laws which they expect will provide the incremental revenues necessary to fund the bridges between now and 2022.