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DPWH says P384B in road projects to help ease EDSA traffic

MANILA, Philippines – Public Works Secretary Mark Villar on Friday, January 17, said P384 billion worth of road projects under the Build, Build, Build program will help ease congestion along EDSA.

At the launch of the Duterte Legacy Campaign, where Cabinet members presented the mid-term accomplishments of the administration, Villar bared the "EDSA traffic master plan," which included P384 billion worth of ongoing road infrastructure projects.

Villar said that 6 projects are set to be completed in 2020, in addition to the NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10, an elevated 5.58-kilometer expressway connecting Port Area to NLEX which was opened in February 2019. These include the following:

  • The NLEX Harbor Link R-10 Exit Ramp aims to reduce travel time from Port Area to NLEX from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 10 minutes.
  • The 3.2-kilometer Mindanao Avenue Extension Segment 2C aims to reduce travel time from Quirino Highway and General Luis Road from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 20 minutes. This covers the Quezon City, Valenzuela City, and Caloocan City. 
  • The 18.30-kilometer Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 aims to cut travel from Buendia in Makati City to Balintawak in Quezon City from 2 hours to about 15 to 20 minutes by the second quarter of 2020.
  • The remaining parts of 6.94-kilometer Laguna Lake Highway which will cut travel time from Taytay, Rizal, to Bicutan from 1 hour to 30 minutes.
  • The 3.3-kilometer Fort Bonifacio-Nichols Road (Lawton Avenue) widening to accommodate more vehicles.
  • The Bonifacio Global City-Ortigas Center Link Road Project aims to reduce travel time from Ortigas and BGC business districts to just 12 minutes.

"Abangan 'nyo po (Just wait for it), this year, we'll see major improvements in EDSA," Villar said.

Meanwhile, 5 projects are set to start construction this year:

  • The 8.35-kilometer NLEX Harbor Link Segment 8.2, which aims to cut travel time from Mindanao Avenue to Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City from 45 minutes to 10 minutes.
  • The remaining parts of the C5 South Link aim to reduce travel time from R1 expressway to SLEX and C5. The flyover from Taguig to Merville in Parañaque was opened in July 2019.
  • Three projects that are part of the Pasig River & Manggahan Floodway Bridges Construction Project:
    • North & South Harbor Bridge in Manila 
    • Palanca-Villegas Bridge connecting A. Villegas Street and Carlos Palanca Street in Manila
    • Eastbank-Westbank Bridge 2, which would connect the East Dike Road and West Dike Road in Cainta, Rizal, crossing Manggahan Floodway

Most of the ongoing projects are targetted to be done before the Duterte administration ends in 2022:

  • By 2021:
    • The 8-kilometer NLEX-SLEX Connector Road that will shorten travel time from Clark in Pampanga to Calamba in Laguna from 3 hours to 1 hour and 40 minutes
    • The 680-meter Binondo-Intramuros Bridge connecting Intramuros and Binondo
    • The 506-meter Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge connecting Estrella, Makati City, to Barangka Drive, Mandaluyong
  • By 2022:
    • NLEX Harbor Link Segment 8.2
    • C5 South Link
    • A 2.39-kilometer part of the 32-kilometer Southeast Metro Manila Expressway and C6 Road
  • By 2023:
    • North & South Harbor Bridge
    • Palanca-Villegas Bridge
    • 929-meter Eastbank-Westbank Bridge 2 

While there are several road infrastructure projects under DPWH's watch, Villar acknowledged that the long-term solution for the traffic in EDSA is mass transit.

Villar said that the completion of President Rodrigo Duterte's promises is "well underway."

"It's always been our goal that these problems, the traffic, the congestion…the congestion in our airports, these problems did not start under us, but definitely we are commited to finishing it within the term of this President," Villar said. – Rappler.com

Aika Rey

Aika Rey covers the Philippine Senate for Rappler. Before writing about politicians, she covered budget, labor, and transportation issues.

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