Panay-Guimaras bridge to beat San Juanico longest bridge record – Benitez

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Lawmakers from the Visayan bloc have urged the national government to immediately begin the construction of the proposed Php 42-billion Panay-Guimaras-Negros Island bridge.

Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo “Albee” Benitez, Visayan bloc convenor, said the construction of the ambitious mega-infra project will erase San Juanico bridge’s record as the country’s longest.

Benitez said the 14.3-kilometer Panay-Guimaras link can be completed by 2021 if construction will commence this year.

“The project shall improve transportation connectivity and efficiency and promote regional economies by way of enhancing productivity, attracting investments and generating more revenues for localities in the region,” said Benitez.

Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno earlier announced that construction of the project’s first pahse may be launched next year.

Benitez stressed that there was a strong possibility that the 5.7-kilometer Guimaras-Negros Bridge would commence its construction before the end of the term of President Rodrigo Duterte if there will be no delays in the process.

Benitez, chairman of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development, said it is important for Congress to rally behind Duterte’s infrastructure program to ensure the implementation of Phase 2 of the project.