A NEW tourism product for development that focuses on existing bridges of Iloilo City was launched recently by the Department of Tourism (DOT) as added attraction to domestic and foreign tourists.
To be known as the 7 Bridges of Blessings, some of the city bridges are considered as heritage and historical sites with each having a story to tell and the persons responsible for its construction.
The city has a total of 20 bridges and two flyovers and is considered as monuments of growth and part of city history. DOT Regional Director Helen Catalbas said that of the seven bridges, four pass across the Iloilo River while three cross the Salog River.
The oldest is the historical Forbes Bridge built in 1910 and rehabilitated in 1975. The other bridges that cross the Iloilo River are the Quirino-Lopez Bridge built in 1967 and rehabilitated in 2000, Iloilo Bridge or the diversion bridge built in 1982, and the new Carpenter's Bridge built in 2010 beside the old Carpenter's Bridge was rehabilitated into a pedestrian bridge.
Bridges built across the Salog River are the Montinola Bridge built in 1956 and Jaro Bridge built in 1982 and the Buhang Bridge built in 2010 across the Jaro floodway.
Other city bridges are the six Dungon bridges over Dungon Creek with the first Dungon Bridge built in 1948, Dungon Bridge I, Dungon Bridge II, Dungon Bridge III, Dungon Bridge IV and Dungon Bridge V, all built in 1982, Buntatala Bridge built in 1956, Calajunan Bridge built in 958, Ticud Bridge built in 2000, Bitoon Bridge built in 2010, and the newest Jalandoni Bridge, Drilon Bridge and Nabitasan Bridge.
The Infante flyover was built in 2008 and the Jalandoni flyover was built in 2010.
Catalbas said the packaged 7 Bridges of Blessings are expected to generate more income for the transport sector, more souvenir sales for vendors and more walking tourists.