NLEx-SLEx road links' shared road issues need Aquino's final OK
MANILA, Philippines - The issues hounding the two road projects linking the expressways north and south of Metro Manila have been resolved, paving the way for this crucial infrastructure projects meant to ease traffic and improve connectivity to proceed.
Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya declined to divulge the issues that have stalled the "common alignment road," or a 5-kilometer-long stretch that the two NLEx-SLEx Connector road projects share, but stressed that recent actions would pave the way for the start of construction this January once President Benigno Aquino III gives his nod.
“Better to wait final approval of the President," Abaya had told reporters. "Yes, it’s somewhere between the two proposals which the TRB (Toll Regulatory Board) will formalize in the STOA (Supplemental Toll Operation Agreement)."
Abaya said the TRB will incorporate the specifications of the common alignment before a notice to proceed it given.
The issues on the "common alignment" area that starts from Buendia in Makati City to Polytechnic University of the Philippines in Sta. Mesa, Manila led to the 'conditional' approval' of one of the road projects at the Aquino-chaired National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board meeting in November 2012.
Aquino had then cited cost issues in the road project proposed by the Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC), which is led by businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan. NEDA Board has approved the other road project, which will be undertaken by the San Miguel Corp. (SMC)-backed Citra Metro Manila Tollways Corp. (CMMTC).
MPTC submitted an unsolicited proposal for the connector road, therefore, it would have to undergo a Swiss Challenge.
"The provisions of the STOA on the common alignment will be the basis for DPWH to undertake the Swiss Challenge," Abaya said.
This road will then lead to two separate connector roads.
The SMC and CMMTC tandem proposed to initially shoulder the P7-billion cost to construct the common alignment. Based on an agreed computation, the revenue sharing will depend on the traffic flow of the vehicles for a certain period.
Pangilinan’s group meanwhile proposed a 50-50 split in revenues and construction cost. - Rappler.com