Slabs from skywalk may be used for footbridges

Slabs from skywalk may be used for footbridges
Photo by Amper Campana

NEW footbridges will be constructed using new structural materials if it is determined that the dismantled parts of the skywalk, particularly the slabs, are no longer viable for use.

In a phone interview on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, Cebu City Councilor Jerry Guardo, chairman of the committee on infrastructure, said there are two options: one is to use the slabs as footbridges, and the other is to build footbridges out of new materials.

Guardo said the slabs are intended to be used as footbridges, but this is subject to evaluation and assessment by structural engineers to determine if the slabs are still structurally sound.

“Their potential use as footbridges is contingent upon evaluation and assessment by structural engineers to ensure their structural integrity,” Guardo said in a mix of Cebuano and English.

He said the structural engineers have not yet assessed the slabs as they are focusing now on the removal of the skywalk that stands between Cebu Normal University (CNU) and Abellana National High School.

He said the dismantled slabs were stored at the junkyard in the warehouse of the City’s engineering department located at the South Road Properties (SRP).

They are being kept because they are subject to the post-audit evaluation of the Commission on Audit, according to Guardo.

At present, roof cutting is underway as part of the dismantling process. This was confirmed by Cebu Bus Rapid Transit (CBRT) project manager Norvin Imbong in a text message on Tuesday, February 20, 2024.

Guardo said the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) granted approval for work to be conducted from February 21 to March 5, 2024.

On the part of the contractor, a full closure was requested due to safety concerns, but part of the City Government has expressed concerns about the inconvenience this may cause to the public.

Guardo said there is a push to start dismantling the skywalk on Thursday evening, February 22, adding that they recommended that a full closure be implemented from Friday to Sunday (February 23-25) for the entire day.

He said weekends are preferable as the work would cause less inconvenience due to reduced public presence.

He added that as of Wednesday, the area near CNU and Abellana where the skywalk is located is still passable. (AML)

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