Panguil Bay Bridge, an important infrastructure project of the Build, Build, Build program, is already at 51.4 percent completion, Sunstar reported. Set to be the longest bridge in Mindanao, the structure extends 3.17 kilometers, connecting Tangub City in Misamis Occidental and the town of Tubod in Lanao del Norte.
The two-way, two-lane bridge is expected to facilitate faster travel time between the two locations. Motorists will simply be on the road for seven minutes, a drastic difference from the current two and a half hours via Panguil Bay Road. The travel time via roll-on roll-off vessel is one hour and 30 minutes.
Similarly, the bridge will cut travel time from Cagayan de Oro and Iligan cities to Tangub City and the northern Zamboanga Region.
The construction of Panguil Bay Bridge encountered some delays in the delivery of equipment and materials amid the pandemic in 2020. The groundbreaking happened in November 2018. The target completion date is at the end of 2023.
The entire project, funded by a loan from Korean Export-Import Bank, is worth P7.37 billion.
Mindanao Bridges Taking Shape
More bridge construction projects are being implemented in Mindanao. Last June 3, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) held a groundbreaking ceremony on two key bridge projects: the Nalil-Sikkiat Bridge over Bongao Channel and the Malassa-Lupa Pula Bridge over Manalik Channel to mainland Tawi-Tawi Island.
The two bridges connect the existing major growth center of Bongao and the future growth center in Panglima Sugala, municipalities in Tawi-Tawi. Aside from promoting development on the mainland, the infrastructure is designed to help address traffic jams in Bongao.
At the same time, the DPWH is working on the procurement process for the construction of Tongsinah Paniongan Bridge over Sanga-Sanga Channel connecting to Papahag Island.
Meanwhile, over at the Zamboanga Peninsula, bridge projects are likewise in full swing. Earlier this year, the Manila Bulletin reported that the Alicia-Malangas Road, which has eight bridges, was at 83 percent completion. The 15.35-kilometer Tampilisan-Sandayong Road that features three bridges was 95 percent finished.
A bridge linking Barangay Guicam in Alicia to Barangay Hula-Hula in Mabuhay of Zamboanga Sibugay is also among the priorities of DPWH. This Guicam Bridge will align with the Lutiman-Guicam-Olutanga Road Project going to Olutanga Island. These Zamboanga projects were reported to be ready for inauguration within the second quarter of the year.
All the infrastructure projects mentioned are under the Improving Growth Corridors in Mindanao Road Sector Project with Asian Development Bank. The program involves the improvement of about 280 kilometers of national primary, secondary, and tertiary roads in the southern region.
The works included are pavement of earth roads, replacement of damaged road sections, widening of existing roads, surface overlays, and replacement and strengthening of bridges.
Property Market Rebound
The continuation of infrastructure projects in Mindanao offers optimism to the region’s real estate outlook post-pandemic. The urban centers in the area are especially expected to see bright opportunities this year.
In a Sunstar report, property consultancy firm Colliers shared that Davao’s residential real estate sector will sustain recovery in 2022. The King City of the South will maintain its reputation as a viable investment hub in the region.
Despite the challenges the city faced in 2020 and 2021, Colliers observed that there was a robust take-up in the local market. Real estate companies that launched in 2020 and 2021 saw 57 percent of units sold at the end of 2021. The consultancy firm also noted that there was a 40 percent growth in residential sales from 2020 to 2021.
Meanwhile, according to Lamudi’s Outlook Quarterly 1Q2022, houses and land were the most inquired property types in the Davao region. The former had the largest share of leads in the first quarter of the year. It was also the most inquired property type for sale in the region.
The demand for properties for sale in the area was most concentrated in the economic and low-cost segments. In terms of the most popular locations, Davao City is the top-searched city in the region.
With the completion of infrastructure projects in Mindanao, the demand for Davao properties is likely to become more robust in the coming years.
An interconnected Philippines made possible by infrastructure projects will be among the core topics discussed in the highly anticipated in-person real estate event of the year, The Outlook 2022: Philippine Real Estate Conference. Various thought leaders will come together to discuss the most pressing real estate matters.
Sources: Sunstar, DPWH, Manila Bulletin