Being stuck in the traffic is the worst feeling for your daily commute. In the Philippines, traffic is one of the biggest problems of the Filipinos and its economy. In fact, Manila ranks 8th in the top cities of the world for the longest hours spent in traffic. GoShorty, an insurance technology site, revealed in their research that the capital of the Philippines has a 43 percent congestion level and Filipinos are losing 98 hours of their life annually as these hours are spent in being stuck in traffic. Additionally, the 2018 study of Japan International Cooperation Agency also claims that an estimated amount of PHP 3.5 billion is the daily monetary value lost because of heavy traffic in our country. Without a doubt, the traffic management needs overhauling to improve the commuting experience of every Filipino and boost our economy even more. One obvious and best solution is to construct roads or alternate routes which will distribute the volume of vehicles and let them have more options depending on their destination. Knowing that Philippines is a third-world country, outside its business districts, provinces suffer from traffic because of limited routes to take for their destination. Fortunately, the Philippine government is partnering with foreign countries to start its infrastructure development and to establish better plans to improve its traffic and economy. There are a lot of lined up projects from the previous Duterte administration which is promised to be continued by the present Marcos administration as it recognizes its goal and benefits to the Filipino people. In essence, its main goal is to disperse the opportunities centralized in the popular business districts in the Philippines by building connections to attract investors on less developed areas and provinces. As a matter of fact, earlier this year, Philippines was granted a loan amounting $56.6 million from South Korea to fund its Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge Project that is set to start in the year 2023. If you are a native of these provinces, this is a good news for you and your compatriots. Since this is a new project, let us know more about the Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge.
Facts About Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge
The approval and development of the Panay-Guimaras-Negros (PGN) Island Bridge Project is a long-time dream for the people of Western Visayas. It will connect three islands namely Panay, Guimaras and Negros. The bridge has total length of 32.47 kilometers composing of two sea-crossing bridges to connect the three islands. The first linkage between Guimaras-Negros will have an approximate length of 13.11 kilometers, road approaches with an approximate total length of 5.49 kilometers and road connectors having 0.87 kilometers, with a total length of 19.47 kilometers. The second linkage between Panay-Guimaras will have an approximate total length of 13 kilometers of which 4.97 kilometers is allotted for the length of bridge and 8.03 kilometers for the road approach.
After its full development, the previous three to four hours travel time of commuters, motorists and freight will shorten to just less than an hour. Travelling by land will now be possible instead of riding a ferry or roll-on roll-off (RoRo) vessels. Having this ease of access makes it ideal for investors to see the profitability of a location so it enables opportunities to come for the less developed areas. In addition, the locals can easily go to other areas to explore more career opportunities to let them advance in the social class system.
Timeline and Updates on the Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge
During April 2022, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) has already endorsed numerous projects to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to start asking for financial funding for its infrastructure projects. Later on, the DFA endorsed these projects to the Republic of Korea through Export Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM). On May 4 of 2022, the South Korean Government extended a loan to the Philippines and chose the development Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge as the particular project to focus on in exchange of loaning its engineering services. The signing of the loan agreement for such services was made between the Department of Finance (DOF) Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and KEXIM Executive Director and Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) Vice President Taesoo Kim. As a matter of fact, Korea is one of the countries who aid the Philippines for its on-going infrastructure projects which includes the Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaption Measures (IDRR-CCA) in the low-lying areas of Pampanga; Samar Pacific Coastal Road Project connecting the Pacific towns in Northern and Eastern Samar; and Panguil Bay Bridge in Northern Mindanao. Nonetheless, the loan grant aims to support the swift establishment of the long-time dream of Western Visayans particularly those natives of Iloilo, Guimaras and Negros Occidental.
Last September 2022, based on the loan guidelines, KEXIM and EDCF have already issued a notice of concurrence of shortlisted consultant for the detailed engineering design (DED) activities of the sea-crossing bridge. Aside from this, on a report by Panay News, the South Korea-based Yoshin Co. and Sambo Engineering and Construction Co. are expected to submit their bid proposals for the detailed engineering design (DED) by Sept. 23. Additionally, the DOF has issued evidence of authority on October 24 of this year for the engineering services of this island bridge project to make the loan agreement effective immediately. Up to this date and notwithstanding the shortlisted consultants for the DED, the procurement for consulting services and tender assistance is still on-going. On the other hand, submission and receipt for bidding documents is scheduled up to the end of December 2022.
Former Senator Franklin Drilon expressed his gratitude for the progress of this project and quoted that “This bridge is a lifelong aspiration of the people of Panay, Guimaras and Negros. It will not only cut travel time among these islands, but it will also change the lives and the future of the people of Western Visayas.”
Infrastructure Projects: A Connection Towards Better Opportunities
It is not new for Filipinos that most of the career opportunities are located in its central business districts especially in Metro Manila and other metropolitan areas. In fact, this centralization became the root cause of traffic and congestion of these developed areas. With this, provincial locals are left without a choice but to risk on exploring opportunities despite the overpopulation in these locations. However, the Philippine government continues to improve and expand access on opportunities especially for the provincial natives. That’s why is slowly transitions to developing provincial areas to make it attractive for investors. The government envisions a more decentralized business district where different parts of the country have equitable opportunity to grow and lessen the migration decision of its locals to increase their chances of grabbing better opportunities.
With the on-going and concurring development on different parts of the Philippines, if you have the financial means, you might want to start investing in these areas. Purchasing a real estate property is the easiest and most secured investment to make. It is like hitting to birds with one stone. You have a property of your own with values appreciating over time and you have the opportunity to convert it into a rental business. With this, Bria Homes continues its expansion which focuses on developing provinces in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. It offers a lot of affordable house and lot with different models to choose from depending on your needs. If budget is an issue, worry no more! Bank housing loan and Pag-IBIG loan are your companion for your real estate purchase. So, what are you waiting for? Seize this opportunity! Bria offers its real estate property in Negros. Don’t you want to be one of the people who will enjoy this project once it’s finished?