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New bridge improves traffic between 2 Lanao provinces

Marawi City – Traffic has vastly improved between Lanao del Sur and Lanao del Norte and between this city and Iligan City following the recent inauguration of the P84.6-million Pantar-Saguilaran bridge.

Commuters and transport operators have lauded the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for constructing the new infrastructure, which now provides an alternative route from another bridge built shortly after the World War II between Saguiaran, Lanao del Sur and Pantar, Lanao del Norte.

(Photo courtesy of google maps)

(Photo courtesy of google maps)

“Di matatawaran ang benepisyo mula sa pagtatayo ng bagong tulay,” Pip Cabili and Bobby Bacarat, traders based in Iligan City and Marawi City, respectively, said.

Local stakeholders also lauded Governors Mamintal “Bombit” Adiong Jr. of Lanao del Dur and Mohammad Khalid Q. Dimaporo of Lanao del Norte for their efforts to complete the vital link between their provinces.

The two governors inaugurated the new bridge in symbolic rites recently.

Local DPWH engineer Mikunug R. Macabantog, who personally supervised constructions works that began in 2013, said the new bridge also improves that transport link between Region 10 and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

The 80-meter new bridge, constructed at a cost of  P84.6 million, is being used by commuters from Iligan City and Lanao del Norte to this city and Lanao del Sur.

The old bridge, built more than 70 years ago, accommodates transport movements from Lanao del Sur and here to the cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro and Lanao del Norte and Misamis Oriental, he said.

It may be recalled that the use of the old bridge as a sole link between here and Iligan City had proven not only inconvenient but also risky to transport operators and commuters due to space problem.

Many residents still remember the portion of the old bridge along Pantar section as a tragic scene for some young Malaysian nationals and a Maranao escort who were stopped and executed by drunken soldiers at a military detachment in the area in 1988. The soldiers were dismissed from service but not indicted in court for criminal liability, it was learned.