Perspective of the Samal-Davao City connector project. (Photo from DPWH Facebook Page)

DAVAO CITY – Mayor Al David Uy of the Island Garden City of Samal hopes the construction of the PHP23 billion Samal-Davao connector bridge will finally start under the new administration.

“(It’s) possible, (I’m) praying,” Uy said in a text message Friday.

Uy noted that bidding for the project was completed last year, and that winning bidder China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) is just waiting for the signing of the loan agreement.

On January 14, 2021, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the contracting firm signed the Design and Build Contract Agreement after CRBC won the bidding.

“"It is one of the most important projects, and we are hoping for its construction. The ball now is with the Department of Finance and the Office of the President,” Uy said.

Earlier, Uy assured the local government will focus on the realization of the Davao-Samal connector, which he said would be vital for the island-city's tourism industry.

With a length of 3.98 kilometers, the bridge will provide a vital link for trade and tourism for both areas through reduced transport costs and faster flow of people, goods, and resources.

Conceptualized 40 years ago, the bridge project has been identified as among the big-ticket infrastructure initiatives under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Meanwhile, the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) also vowed to push for the big-ticket projects for Mindanao, including the Davao-Samal connector project to the new administration come July this year.
 
"We don't want Mindanao to be left behind when it comes to infrastructure. We need the connectivity within Mindanao with other areas in the Philippines and BIMP-EAGA,” MinDA Secretary Mabel Sunga-Acosta said in a recent interview. (PNA)