Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge

Satellite view image of Marcelo Fernan Bridge between Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City in Cebu.

If there was a poll for the best-looking bridge in the country, I would probably give my vote to Cebu’s Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge. I said “probably,” because the elegant-looking Bamban Bridge is a very serious contender.

Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge connects the islands of Mactan to mainland Cebu across the Mactan Channel. It’s a cable-stayed type of bridge with two load towers 185 meters apart (easily visible in the satellite image). A cable-stayed bridge is almost like a suspension bridge, but instead of vertical cables connecting the bridge deck to a pair of über-long thick cables tied to the ends of the bridge, the bridge deck is supported by numerous cables connecting it to the load towers.

Side-view photo of Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge, taken by Dr. Christian Enricuso
Very beautiful photo by Dr. Christian Enricuso.

The bridge was constructed in order to alleviate traffic between the islands. Previously, only ferries and the old Mandaue-Mactan Bridge (seen about 1.2 kilometers to the southwest) was the way to go between Lapu-Lapu City and Mandaue City. The new bridge was finished in August 1999 and was named in honor of Senator Marcelo B. Fernan who died of cancer on July 11 of the same year. Senator Fernan resigned the Senate presidency shortly before his death.

I’m not sure, but I think this is the only bridge of its kind in the Philippines, and according to this Cebuano blogger, it is the longest of its particular class in the world.

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Posted on
April 14, 2007
Filed under
BridgesCentral Visayas
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  1. benj wrote on May 15, 2007 @ 09:05AM

    Oh wow! I might get to see this when I go to Cebu next week. The design is soooo European. Amazing work.

    The name Marcelo Fernan resonates with me a lot because he was Mitra’s running mate during the 1992 elections. hehe

  2. Eugene wrote on May 15, 2007 @ 10:22AM

    I think Fernan was one of the true statemen during his time in the Senate. It’s quite fitting that this really modern bridge is named in his honor.

    If you're going to Cebu by plane, you'll definitely see this bridge since the airport is on Mactan Island and Cebu is on the mainland.

  3. benj wrote on June 4, 2007 @ 11:17AM

    According to my friend who’s originally from Cebu, the bridge used to hold the record for the longest central span for any cable-stayed bridge (i.e. the span not supported by the columns). It’s not exactly something to be proud of, but at least it’s still up!

    It’s not apparent in photos in this post, but the bridge is actually arched. towards the middle (but it’s not that steep).

  4. Brian wrote on August 15, 2008 @ 01:13PM

    it is my grandlolos bridge

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