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1-billion longest bridge in Calabarzon takes shape

By Nimfa Estrellado The render design of the Roma Point Bridge. (Photo from Doktora Helen Tan/FB) ALABAT, Quezon - A transformative infr...

By Nimfa Estrellado

1-billion longest bridge in Calabarzon takes shape
The render design of the Roma Point Bridge. (Photo from Doktora Helen Tan/FB)

ALABAT, Quezon - A transformative infrastructure project is underway in the Philippines: the 1 billion peso Roma Point Bridge. Spanning 1.7 kilometers, it will soon link the island of Alabat to mainland Luzon, becoming the longest over-the-water link in the Calabarzon region. Located in Quezon Province, this ambitious undertaking has the potential to unlock economic growth and tourism on the island.

The Roma Point Bridge will connect the town of Calauag, Quezon, to Alabat Island, known for its beautiful Pacific-facing beaches and a planned 55-megawatt wind farm. Currently, residents of Alabat's three municipalities—Perez, Alabat, and Quezon—rely on boats and ferries to reach the mainland, a service often disrupted by weather. The bridge promises to revolutionize travel and trade, creating a reliable passage across the Silangan Pass.

This major infrastructure project aligns with the Philippines' goal of modernizing its 7,600+ islands and stimulating development in more rural areas. The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has designated the bridge as the longest in Quezon Province and earmarked Php1 billion for the project.

The idea of a bridge to Alabat Island gained traction with a feasibility study commissioned by Congresswoman (now Governor) Angelina "Helen" Tan. The study determined that a bridge across the Silangan Pass was the safest, most stable, and most cost-effective solution. Construction, initiated by the DPWH in 2018, is now advancing rapidly after a brief pandemic-related halt.

The Roma Point Bridge addresses a pressing challenge for Alabat Island's 43,000+ residents. Business and essential travel to Manila or Lucena currently involves a 45-minute ferry ride, subject to weather and mechanical issues. This new connection will offer a much-needed alternative, providing consistent transportation for people, goods, and vehicles.

Hidden Gem

Tucked between Calauag Bay and Lopez Bay lies Alabat Island, a "hidden gem" renowned for its pristine beaches, abundant seafood, and sweet coconuts. Soon, this idyllic destination will be even more accessible thanks to an ambitious infrastructure project: the Roma Point Bridge. This bridge, the longest in both Quezon province and the entire Calabarzon region, promises to unlock the island's potential and revolutionize travel to its shores.

Additional ambitious infrastructure projects that promise to transform tourism in Quezon Province include the South Luzon Expressway TR4 Extension to Quezon Province, the Polillo Circumferential Road, which connects the towns of Polillo, Burdeos, and Panukulan; the Alabat Circumferential Road, which connects the towns of Alabat, Quezon, and Perez; and the Pacific Eastern Seaboard Expressway, which connects the provinces of Aurora from Dinggalan to Atimonan, Quezon.

Piers and Wind Farm

It will also boost tourism and business infrastructure on the island, attracting more investors and further stimulating economic growth. Additionally, the bridge will enhance the overall connectivity of Alabat Island with neighboring areas, fostering regional development and cooperation.

The Roma Point Bridge advances steadily with the construction of its 20th and 21st piers this year. This ambitious project, featuring a total of 37 piers, is on track for completion in 2028. Meanwhile, Alabat Island is poised to become a hub for renewable energy with the planned Alabat Island Wind Farm.

This ambitious 55 MW onshore project, developed and currently owned by Alternergy Philippines Holding (partly owned by the state-run GSIS pension fund), is slated to begin construction this year. Commercial operations are expected by 2025, bringing sustainable power to the region.

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