Samal-Davao bridge

Samal Highlands Garden Resort – More Info {6}


A couple of recent articles provide more detail about the upcoming Samal Highlands Garden Resort that I mentioned in a previous post. This is going to be another large high class resort along the lines of Holiday Oceanview Samal and Playa Azeala. The addition of these three alone, not even counting the smaller resorts & subdivisions, will radically change Samal Island from it’s current state, IMO.

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Tagpopongan Roro Port Half Finished {7}

As I mentioned a year and a half ago, Samal Island is set to receive a new RoRo ferry terminal. This one to be on the east side of the island. According to Dredging Today (everyone reads that, right?) the work is about half finished on the Samal section of the new port.

I try to stay away from directly copying an article, but I’m feeling lazy today, and don’t want to spend the time rewording what they already said. So here is the article in all it’s glory, with credit to them of course:
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Samal-Davao Bridge too soon? {16}

An article in PIA (Philippine Information Agency) talks about the planned Samal-Davao bridge, and quotes Davao del Norte Governor Rodolfo del Rosario as being concerned about the infrastructure of the island. In particular, he questions whether the bridge should be developed before the needs of water and power are addressed.

“If I do have the money for a project in Samal, I will pour it for power and water supply projects because the place needs them most,” he said.

The number of projects on Samal Island seems to increase on an almost daily basis, and most of these are privately funded. Who has the responsibility to insure adequate utilities to service all of these developments? It would seem to be in the best interests of the private developers to work with the local government to make sure that this happens, but I don’t know how that works. As far as I know the island is serviced by Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative (DANECO). Do they have ability to work with private firms?

I’m sure this will all be addressed as plans move forward. For now though, it appears they may be putting the cart ahead of the horse.

Samal-Davao Bridge {4}

There is talk of a bridge to connect IGaCoS to Davao. Not living in the area myself, I don’t know if this has been an on-going discussion or if it is a new plan. A bridge connecting Samal Island to Davao would likely make Samal Island a much different place than it is now.

I first heard of the potential bridge during my visit to Davao earlier this month. I spent a couple of days on Samal Island looking at land and of course I used the RORO ferry (article and video from Mindanao Bob’s excellent blog - Live in the Philippines) to get there. There are other methods to make the trip, such as the boat I rode to Paradise Island on my previous visit but as far as I know boats are the only method currently.

Paradise Island boat ride

When I mentioned the bridge to my wife and a couple of others, I mostly got an expression of skepticism. This immediately reminded me of a similar situation in Spokane regarding the North-South freeway. I’ve lived here almost 18 years now, and the North-South freeway has been discussed for as long as I can remember. I believe it has had numerous proposals that for one reason or another (money?) never saw the light of day. Evidently it was finally approved but you sure can’t tell by the progress.

Is the Samal-Davao bridge another North-South freeway? Is it imminent or still a dream? Assuming it gets approval, how long do you suppose until it becomes a reality?

Where’s that confounded bridge? {16}


Note: this is a repeat of an article (comments included) from a year ago. As you can see, despite an occasional mention in a news article, nothing has changed.

Do you think it’s possible Robert Plant was referring to the Samal-Davao bridge, when he uttered those words at the end of The Crunge back in 1973?

Three months to review the already completed study, add in Filipino time (double it) and we’re at about six months since they announced the go ahead. A rash of announced resorts and subdivisions followed (most probably already planned). And here we sit. Well there certainly has been an economic downturn since then, maybe that’s the cause.

Most likely, and this is only speculation on my part, is that the bridge is a long way from seeing anything getting started. Some would say never, or not in our lifetime.

I check the news sites and search google occasionally but I’m not finding anything new at all. Maybe one of the locals there has some insights, but again nothing that I’ve heard about.

Photo credit: Michael Putland via

Samal Island Airport {2}

Davao International Aiport

Rarely do I quote an article verbatim. Usually I’ll quote a few paragraphs and comment on them, and then summarize my feelings on the whole thing. This is one article I’ve been holding for awhile. It almost makes me wonder if it is satire.

I’ll let you read it, if you haven’t previously and decide for yourself….
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Samal-Davao Bridge Update {3}

It seems that the bridge has been given the go ahead. They expect to start construction following the completion of the feasibility study, which is expected take another three months. It’s not stated yet how long until completion of the bridge. Maybe that will come with the completion of the study.
SunStar article.

As I’ve stated, I have mixed feelings about the bridge. On one hand my property value will certainly increase, on the other hand it the island could have much more development and traffic. It is promising that the local government has committed to preserving a large portion of the island though.

Taking Off the Rose Colored Glasses {7}

As much as I’ve been trying to put off writing this article, I guess I better get it done as the comments seem to be heading more and more in this direction. I just want to state up front that I love Samal Island, and I feel that I’ve been a very strong ambassador for the island ever since I started this blog. Since that time I’ve also learned that if you say anything negative about Samal, you had better beware because someone is going to take it very personally. I don’t wish to offend anyone with my comments here, but I feel I need to be honest, and not mislead.
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