The newly-completed Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (or CCLEX) is not only an artistic and valuable bridge but also a new attraction in Cebu and Cordova cities.
CCLEX is a monumental project that takes advantage of the recent engineering feats in this century.
As a newly-built structure, the Cebu-Cordova Bridge is now considered the longest bridge in the country spanning over 8 kilometers from Cebu City to Mactan Island in the province.
Cebu is considered the cradle of Catholic devotion in the country. And the creation of this bridge seems to be paying homage to the island's deep Catholic roots, as highlighted in a lighted cross on the twin tower cable-stayed main bridge.
The original completion target of the bridge was to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Christianity in the Philippines - on March 16, 2021. However, due to some delays, the completion and inauguration happened a year later (2022).
There are two significant purposes or advantages of this bridge.
First, the movement of people to and fro between the two cities is made more comfortable - travel shortened.
This is incredibly practical among daily commuters and travelers arriving or departing at Cebu-Mactan's domestic and international airports.
Second, this bridge will help improve the movement of goods, thus contributing to both cities' economic and social development. This is a piece of great news among businesses that transport products to and from both cities.
The Cebu-Cordova Bridge has two wide lanes in each direction. It also has an on- and off-ramps connection to the main bridge to the Cebu South Coastal Road (CSCR).
It also functions as a viaduct that levels down to a causeway in Barangay Pilipog, Cordova municipality.
To allow the ship to pass through below this giant bridge, it is built with a navigational clearance of 51 meters for shipping traffic, high enough for cargo and cruise ships to get through.
The toll expressway is designed and built to serve more or less than 50 thousand vehicles daily and allows speeds from 80 to 90 kilometers per hour.
As one of the country's largest infrastructures, CCLEX was implemented by the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corporation (CCLEC).
The corporation collaborated with the Municipality of Cordova and the Cebu City government.
CCLEC envisioned that this new bridge would help ease the bad traffic congestion and capacitate the network of roads in Metro Cebu.
Ultimately, CCLEX will "spur economic growth and boost[ing] investments" throughout the Visayan and surrounding regions, not only Cebu Province.
Cebu-Cordova Bridge Serving as Expressway
Yes, structures and bridges like this linking Mactan Island and Metro Cebu should help improve both business and peoples' lives living and working on both main islands.
This bridge provides Cebuanos and guests the best and fastest road to traverse the two places as a toll expressway.
Being a brand new and well-built expressway, motorists and passengers alike should enjoy a comfortable expressway that is well-maintained and provide more services, including safety insurance to every user.
Some specific features include:
Also known as the Cebu-Cordova Bridge and the 'Third Bridge' of Cebu is 8.9 kilometers long and a toll bridge expressway.
This bridge cuts across the Mactan Channel. It is the third bridge that links Cebu City and Mactan Island. However, it is the first link between Cebu City and Cordova.
Considered the latest longest bridge in the Philippines, 5 kilometers longer than the Candaba Viaduct of North Luzon Expressway and 2 kilometers longer than the San Juanico Bridge that linked Samar and Leyte.
The mayor of Cordova proposed this project to connect the municipality and mainland Cebu City. This proposal surfaced during Benigno Aquino III's administration and was put forward by Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) in 2014.
After more significant research and study about the proposal, the local government units of Cordova and Cebu City agreed on a public-private partnership (PPP) with Metro Pacific Tollways Development Corporation (MPTDC).
The commencement of CCLEX's construction was finally announced in 2017 when the funding issues were resolved.
The MPTDC was responsible for the construction, financing, and operation when completed.
Although not completed yet, the bridge played a part in the 500th anniversary of Christianity's arrival in Cebu. During the celebration, eight ecumenical 'iconic crosses' were planted on the bridge's two main towers.
The crosses started giving light on April 15, 2021, a month later than the expected date of its completion.
Finally, the bridge was inaugurated by former President Duterte on April 27, 2022. The event coincided with the 501st Anniversary of the Battle of Mactan.
The formal opening happened three days (April 30) later when motorists were allowed to pass through this new and first expressway built outside of Luzon island.
Carlos Fernandez Casado, a Spanish firm, and SENER Ingenieria y Sistemas. The local DCCD Engineering Corporation and the Danish COWI firms are the engineers.
The joint venture between ACCIONA (Spanish firm) and First Balfour and DMCI philippine firms constructed the Cebu-Corodva Bridge. The expressway is not only long (8.9 kilometers) but also wide-spanning 27 meters wide, serving at least 40 thousand vehicles a day.
Barrier Toll System
CCLEX expressway is equipped with a barrier toll system that will manage motorists' payments.
A toll plaza was built on an artificial island to serve as the toll collection point of this expressway. The following are the fixed rates per vehicle's features:
Class 1: cars, motorcycles, SUVs, jeepneys (90.00 pesos)
Class 1 above 7 feet: vehicles with recreational equipment (180.00 pesos)
Class 2: buses, light trucks (180 pesos)
Class 3: heavy trucks and trailers (270 pesos)
Class 4: tourist and sightseeing visitors (random)
The plan is to extend to Lapu-Lapu City and build a direct link to Mactan-Cebu International Airport.
This plan will add 5 to 8 kilometers to the expressway that will need between 10 and 15 billion pesos.
As mentioned above, the toll plaza comprises eight toll lanes with RFID electronic payment for toll collection.
Aside from the toll plaza, CCLEX has the following significant facilities and structure features:
• Installation of all 56 stay cables
• Completion of CCLEX with on-and-off ramp structure
• Completion of a 200-meter pedestrian footbridge
• Completion of Cebu viaduct structure
• Completion of Cordova viaduct structure
• Completion of four low-level bridges for fishermen
• Placing of 20 vent pipes for Cordova water channel equalization
Furthermore, the expressway was constructed with a total budget of 20 billion pesos and the government has committed to fund operation and maintenance for 15 years. This is expected to reduce traffic congestion in Metro Cebu and provide better accessibility to various parts of the city. The construction milestone marks the completion of CCLEX’s eight major components, which include:
• Construction of 8.25 kilometers of viaducts and embankments
• Installation of two cable stayed bridges with a total length of 1.36 km
• Building of an interchange at the northern tip connected to the new Mactan-Cebu International Airport Access Road (MCIAAR)
• Construction of six interchanges at different locations
• Construction of three access roads (Lapu-Lapu, Talisay, and Minglanilla)
• Installation of Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) along the expressway
The completion of CCLEX is part of the government’s “Build Build Build” infrastructure project, which is aimed at modernizing and improving transport in the country. The expressway will cut travel time between Mandaue and Naga cities from two hours to just 30 minutes. It is also expected to reduce traffic congestion significantly in Cebu City, especially around the region of Metro Cebu. With CCLEX, commuters can better enjoy their trips to and from the city, as well as its nearby towns.
The operation of CCLEX is expected to greatly contribute to Cebu’s economic development in terms of boosting trade and tourism activities in the region. It will also provide more jobs for Cebuanos, particularly those working in the transport and logistics industries.
Moreover, CCLEX is expected to reduce air pollution levels in Cebu City by encouraging the use of public transportation systems, such as buses and taxis. This will help create a healthier environment for citizens living in the area. In addition, it will also promote road safety by providing an efficient route for commuters.
Finally, the completion of CCLEX will help reduce traffic congestion in the city, resulting in improved mobility and better access to various points within Metro Cebu. This will ultimately result in an increase in economic productivity for Cebuanos as it becomes easier for them to move around the city.
All these positive aspects of CCLEX will contribute to a better quality of life in Cebu City. People living there can look forward to an improved transportation system and a more sustainable environment. With the completion of this project, Cebuanos are sure to experience greater comfort and convenience as they go about their daily lives.
From improved public transportation to decreased travel time, there’s no doubt that CCLEX will be beneficial in many ways. The project will also serve as an economic catalyst for the province, creating more jobs and improving business opportunities.
By taking advantage of this new infrastructure, Cebu residents can enjoy a better quality of life with increased access to essential services. CCLEX is sure to be an asset in the years to come, aiding in the continued growth and development of the region.
By investing in the CCLEX project, Cebu is taking a big step forward in its pursuit of becoming an even more prosperous city. The infrastructure improvements will help unlock potential for further growth, and contribute to a better quality of life for all those living there.
It’s clear that Cebu’s commitment to this project is great, and it should be applauded for all the hard work it has put into making CCLEX a reality. With the help of Cebu’s government, businesses, and citizens alike, there’s no doubt that this ambitious undertaking will benefit everyone involved.
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