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PH's new longest bridge Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway inaugurated

By NICK GARCIA Published Apr 28, 2022 4:46 pm Updated Apr 28, 2022 4:51 pm

After four years, the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEX), now the country's longest and tallest bridge, was finally inaugurated last April 27.

The 8.9-kilometer CCLEX connects Cordova in Mactan Island to the South Road Properties in Cebu City, eclipsing the 2.1-kilometer San Juanico Bridge that connects Tacloban in Leyte to Santa Rita in Samar.

CCLEX is expected not only to decongest traffic but also increase economic activities in Cebu and throughout Visayas.

The inauguration, led by President Rodrigo Duterte, coincided with the 501st anniversary of the Kadaugan sa Mactan or Victory in Mactan, in which chieftain Lapulapu's men overpowered the Spanish armada led by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.

CCLEX was constructed by the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corp., a subsidiary of the Manny V. Pangilinan-led Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., in partnership with the municipality of Cordova and Cebu City.

Construction of the P33-billion bridge took place from April 2018 to September 2021. The project is not part of the Duterte administration's flagship Build, Build, Build infrastructure program.

CCLEX features

CCLEX is made of over 150,000 cubic meters of concrete, 31,000 tons of Grade 75 steel, and 965 tons of active steel.

Its foundations are also designed to withstand extreme conditions like earthquakes, typhoons, or tsunamis. They're about 60 meters deep and were built with concrete piles in the seabed.

The bridge has a design speed of 80 kilometers per hour and has a navigational clearance of 52 meters, allowing large vessels to pass underneath the bridge.

According to the CCLEX Bridge Management Board, four-wheeled vehicles, as well as motorcycles with cubic capacities below 400, particularly 125cc to 399cc, may pass the expressway. It is expected to serve about 50,000 vehicles daily.

CCLEX will have two lanes in each direction, while its toll plaza has eight lanes, or four in each direction.

Key features include radio-frequency identification or RFID electronic payment system; weigh-in-motion sensors that will detect overloaded vehicles; internet protocol cameras and high definition closed circuit television; and service facilities like gasoline stations, retail outlets, convenience stores, restaurants, as well as security, medical, and maintenance centers.

CCLEX also has crosses on top of the twin pylons of the cable-stayed main bridge, highlighting Cebu’s title as the Cradle of Christianity in the Far East.