- ROW issues slow down Samal-Davao Bridge construction
THE NATIONAL Development Authority XI said the detailed engineering design (DED) for the Samal Island-Davao City Connector (SIDC) was suspended effective last Jan. 3, 2023.
However, an official said the DED suspension does not mean the bridge’s construction is already dead in the water.
The statement released by NEDA XI on Feb. 1 stated that “the delay on the DED formulation was due to the prevailing issues on Right-of-Way (ROW) acquisition.”
It also said the project updates “were sourced from the report provided by the implementing agency, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), during the 4th Quarter Meeting of the RDC XI’s Infrastructure Development Committee on November 22, 2023.”
The DED includes how the bridge will look, the program of works, the cost, detailed activities, a study to determine the exact geographic or starting point of the project, and the type of soil underwater. It will also determine the final amount or contract cost so that the government can look for potential project funders.
However, NEDA XI stated the lifting of the DED suspension would have been issued in early February per the update from the DPWH-SIDC Project Management Office on Jan. 31, 2024.
NEDA released the statement after Presidential Assistant for Eastern Mindanao Leo Tereso Magno said the Samal Island-Davao City Connector was still a go as of Jan. 30, 2024.
During the NEDA XI Year Starter press conference on Jan. 30, Maria Lourdes Lim, NEDA XI regional director, reiterated that the project “is currently suspended effective January 3, 2023, due to prevailing issues to right of way acquisition raised by about two to three parcels of land or property owners in areas of Lanang, Davao City.”
She also said, “If not for negotiations, the government may resort to expropriations.”
Magno added the Samal Bridge is one of the priority projects of the Marcos administration in the Davao Region, so the national government is fully committed to seeing it through.
The Regional Development Council (RDC) approved the SIDC, which is a component of the Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP) for 2023–2028 economic development, is based on the eight-point socio-economic development agenda of the Marcos administration, as well as the Philippine Development Plan (PDP), 2023–2028.
SIDC is a toll-free four-lane prestressed concrete extradosed bridge, with a total length of 3.98 kilometers, and funded through China’s Official Development Assistance.
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