1. What is Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge AKA Manila Bay Bridge?
The Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge, also known as Manila Bay Bridge, is being developed by the Philippines Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) that commits to significantly reduce travel time from Bataan to Cavite from five hours to 40 minutes.
The government’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ program aims to boost the economic growth through increased investments in public infrastructure. This project was approved by the National Economic Development Authority Board in January 2020,; began its construction last November 2020, and is expected to be completed in January 2022.
The bridge will connect the provinces in Central Luzon and Southern Tagalog region in hopes of alleviating traffic congestion in Metro Manila.
The 32.15km-long Bataan-Cavite bridge is being constructed with two lanes in each direction, connecting Bataan and Cavite provinces which is positioned northwest and southwest of the capital Manila. The bridge has been drawn from the sea thus being surrounded by mountains and Manila’s skyline.
The starting point of the bridge will be at Barangay Alas-asin in Mariveles, Bataan, crossing Manila Bay, and will end at Barangay Timalan in Naic, Cavite. The bridge is said to provide a remarkable transportation means for the country as it is ease the traffic on the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX). It will also deemed to be an aid for regional economies of Cavite, Bataan, and provinces located further north of Bataan through improved connectivity and job opportunities. New expansion and economic growth opportunities are also expected outside Manila such as the development of seaports in Cavite and Bataan as major international shipping gateways to the Philippines. Another exciting part of this project is that DPWH also mentioned the possibility of building a connector to Corregidor Island to promote local tourism.
2. It was first proposed in the 1980s
It was Felicito Payumo, former chair of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority, who originally pitched the bridge project linking Bataan in the north to Cavite in the south. He initially proposed the project during his term as congressman of Bataan in 1987 and called it the “Trans Manila Bay Crossing.”
3. It was inspired by a project in Japan
During an interview with Payumo, the idea for the Bataan-Cavite bridge project came from the Tokyo Aqua-Line projects in Japan. Also known as the “Trans-Tokyo Bay Expressway, the expressway connects the city of Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture with Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture. The motorists were able to cut their travel time between two regions from 90 to 15minutes, essentially skipping driving through downtown Tokyo.
The Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge is hinged on the same concept for Metro Manila as the motorists from Bataan and the rest of Central Luzon need not go around Metro Manila to go to Cavite and the rest of Southern Luzon.
4. The Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge includes an underwater tunnel in the original proposal
Two Japanese firms submitted their proposals to build an underwater tunnel as well as a bridge through Manila Bay to connect Bataan and Cavite. It was included in the original proposal that the first six kilometers from Mariveles Bataan to Corregidor Island would be a suspension bridge, while a tunnel portion will be from Naic to Caballo Island.
5. The Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge Project promises to improve regional mobility
The 20-mile-lon, four-lane cable-stayed bridge will connect the provinces of Bataan and Cavite, cutting travel time between the regions from as much as five hours to 30 minutes or less, while also relieving traffic congestion in downtown Manila.
The planned 2,952-ft and 1,312-ft main spans will preserve the bay’s existing 160-ft-deep shipping channels and minimize the number of deep-water foundations.
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