AKLAN Governor Florencio Miraflores has opposed the unsolicited proposal of the San Miguel Corporation to establish a bridge linking Boracay to Caticlan.
Miraflores, in his state of the province address Monday, August 19, said he expressed his opposition during one of the meetings with the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force early this year.
The Department of Public Works and Highways said in a statement earlier that it is hoping to grant "soon" the original proponent status to San Miguel Corporation for its proposal to build a 1.2-kilometer bridge from Caticlan to Boracay Island worth P5.5 billion.
The project is a 1.2-kilometer limited-access bridge infrastructure between Boracay Island and Caticlan in Malay, Aklan.
The bridge is not envisioned to cater to vehicular through-traffic, so as not to congest the island. It will be provided with loading/unloading areas on both ends to process the movement of commuters, solid waste, goods and supplies.
Miraflores said instead of the bridge, he is planning to build an integrated port terminal in Caticlan.
The terminal is envisioned to have complete facilities and capable of accommodating future cruise ship passengers.
"Breakwater structures will also be put up to upgrade both ports (including Cagban) into all weather ports that can allow berthing of motorboats and fast crafts during the Habagat season and will operate 24-7," Miraflores said.
To decongest the roll-on, roll-off (roro) port in Caticlan, the Department of Transportation has approved the request of the Provincial Government for the expansion of the Buruanga Port in Alegria, Buruanga and earmarked P200 million for such.
"The Manoc Manoc Cargo Port has commenced construction works. When completed, it will receive and dispatch from and to the island. A separate berthing area will be allocated for priority use of barges hauling out garbage in Boracay," he said.
"We intend to develop the 6,000-square-meter area adjacent to Wetland Number 6 to pave the way for a much presentable and compliant market site for vendors, masseurs and the like. The development will also feature stalls for food businesses," Miraflores added.
The Provincial Government is also pushing for the housing project in the mainland for the island's workers. (SunStar Philippines)