DPWH to auction off Quezon-Bicol Expressway project by end-2018
MANILA, Philippines – A proposed 180-kilometer expressway from southern Quezon to Camarines Sur is set to be auctioned off to the private sector by end-2018, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) announced.
Alex Bote, public-private partnership (PPP) director at DPWH, said in a report that the agency will undertake a feasibility study on the proposed Quezon-Bicol Expressway (QBEX), a project aimed at signifcantly reducing travel time between Manila and the Bicol region.
"By the 4th quarter of this year, we plan to begin the tender process of QBEX," Bote said in a statement on Wednesday, February 7.
Implemented under the PPP scheme, the expressway project covers an estimated length of about 180 kilometers from Pagbilao, Quezon to San Fernando, Camarines Sur.
Bote said the project cost will be determined upon completion of the feasibility study,
"By 4th quarter of 2019, the detailed engineering design [of QBEX is expected to be done]. [This will be] followed by right-of-way acquisition starting the 4th quarter of 2020, so we will be able to proceed with the construction by 1st quarter of 2022," Bote said.
The DPWH targets to finish the construction of the proposed expressway PPP deal by 2026.
Once completed, DPWH said QBEX will be a faster alternative to the congested Maharlika Highway – which is also more than 200 kilometers – for travelers between southern Luzon and Bicol.
"For the longest time, Daang Maharlika Highway also known as Pan-Philippine Highway is the only route of motorists heading and coming from Bicol region to Manila," the DPWH PPP director said.
"With QBEX, traveling will not only be faster but also safer since motorists can avoid traversing through mountainside and other fragmentary roads of Maharlika Highway," he added. – Rappler.com