By Betheena Kae Unite
The 33-year-old Adriatico Bridge in Malate, Manila, which collapsed almost a year ago, has already been replaced and was reopened Friday.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has ordered the reopening of the bridge as its replacement and strengthening works were already completed.
One of the four lanes of the bridge collapsed on September 8, 2017 due to a parked overloaded garbage truck, prompting its closure. The damaged lane became passable in September 11, 2017 to light vehicles.
However, five hours since its reopening on the same day last year, the whole portion of the bridge was closed due to “new cracks found on the other lanes of the bridge.” The department then ordered the reconstruction of the whole bridge.
After 11 months, the bridge was again reopened. According to DPWH Secretary Mark Villar, under the P44-million reconstruction fund, the 14-meter Adriatico Bridge has a widened carriageway and higher load capacity.
“To accommodate more traffic volume, we have widened Adriatico Bridge from four lanes to six lanes and increased its maximum allowable weight from 10 tons to 20 tons,” Villar said.
It can be recalled that based on the findings, the bridge collapsed because the parked garbage truck weighs 25 tons, heavier than the maximum allowable gross vehicle weight of the bridge.
Adriatico Bridge, Villar furthered, has higher elevation and wider waterway to increase drainage capability at Estero de San Antonio Abad and minimize flooding at the upstream of the bridge particularly within the vicinity of St. Scholastica, St. Benilde and La Salle Universities.
Meanwhile, Villar assured that the replacement of Adriatico Bridge, along with the other national bridge projects inside and outside Metro Manila conform to the latest DPWH bridge seismic design specifications.
“Retrofitting and replacement of old bridges in the national capital region are being fast-tracked as we want our infrastructures prepared and structurally safe and sound in case of the occurrence of massive earthquake and other calamities,” he said.
The department led the reopening of the newly-replaced bridge with the city’s local officials and other DPWH officials.