By JUNE S. BLANCO
DESIGN giant Arup, with 34 offices worldwide including in Manila, presented April 2 to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Bohol 2nd District Engineering Office (DEO) in Ubay town its pre-feasibility study (FS) for the Bohol-Leyte Link Bridge (BLLB).
Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado who attended the presentation said once constructed, the “ambitious” bridge from Ubay via President Carlos P. Garcia to Maasin City in Southern Leyte will connect Bohol to the rest of the country by land.
Aumentado said the Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded the pre-FS, and a full-blown study will follow.
“The bridge is part of the dream of my father, [former] Gov. Erico Boyles Aumentado, to put Bohol among the fast developing provinces in the country today”, the solon said. The father is his immediate predecessor in the House of Representatives.
After the funding for pre-FS for the BLLB, Aumentado said up next will be the funding for the FS for Bohol-Cebu Friendship Bridge. He expressed gratitude to President Rodrigo Duterte for pushing these major projects for this province.
The BLLB is part of the Infrastructure Preparation and Innovation Facility (IPIF) for roads and bridges of DPWH.
On the other hand, Arup’s website states that the company has been working in the Philippines since 1986 – and established a permanent office in Manila in 1990. It provides total design services to meet the increasing demand for high quality, international standard projects for the country’s growing economy.
Among the prominent buildings it has designed are the Grand Hyatt Metrocenter, the tallest and biggest mixed-use development in the Philippines, and the St Francis Shangri-la Place, the world’s first building to adopt a damped-outrigger system – Arup’s patented viscous damping system.
Aumentado said the BLLB is planned to accommodate power cables as enticement to Bohol locators for the power generation industry.
Bohol should think of the next 10 to 25 years. The current “imported” power from Leyte will not be enough by then, hence two-way cables must be in place to bring power in and also out because Bohol may not use up all the additional generation right away. This way, the generation industry players here have the option to sell their “overproduction” to the national grid.
A stable power supply in place will also be attractive to Bohol locators who are in businesses other that power generation, Aumentado concluded.