According to Mindanao Daily Mirror, the Department of Tourism (DoT) is still hopeful that the tourism road convergence project on Davao- Samal Bridge which was under the public-private partnership infrastructure projects was expected to be implemented by 2019 under the administration of President Duterte .
This was confirmed by Eden David, Tourism Assistant Secretary. She said that the budget with a total of P16.47 billion for the feasibility study which is still under way and for the construction of the bridge was allocated by the Department of Public Works and Highways.
The project is also part of the DOT’s initiatives under its priority program to establish overall road connectivity within Davao and the Mindanao region.
Former Davao del Norte Governor Rodolfo del Rosario said that the pre-feasibility analysis was already completed in 2002 following the framework of the Davao Integrated Development Program (DIDP) Master Plan. The study is currently conducted by Katahira and Engineers International (KEI), a Japan-based civil engineering consultancy firm.
The pre-feasibility study is a preliminary research of a project that will determine if it is up for a feasibility study stage. The study entails the determination of routes, what structure to propose, economic benefits, traffic concerns, and others. Among the eight possible routes, the Japanese consultants are eyeing on two possible routes where the bridge will be constructed, one of it is the route which is from the Km. 9 in Sasa to Babak District, Samal.
The 1.2 kilometer bridge will provide a direct connection between Davao and Samal, offering a faster connection than the current 15-minute ferry. It will directly benefit tourism development while unclogging traffic in the city.
Tourists and locals will soon to have convenient road access to the Island Garden City of Samal. The bridge will spur economic development in the island as soon as it will be fully realized. This will also boost and sustain the Davao-Samal tourism, generally Davao’s economic growth and better accessibility.