MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang Palace asks Filipinos to unite as the government starts road projects, including Skyway Stage 3, which begins construction on Monday, February 17.
“We call on our people to share in the burden of sacrifice and bear with short-term inconvenience so we can build better roads that will ensure faster travel and more productive living in our highly congested National Capital Region,” said Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma on Sunday.
Skyway Stage 3, which was launched by President Benigno Aquino III late in January, will run from Buendia, Makati City to Balintawak, Quezon City. The 14.8-kilometer elevated expressway will connect the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and is estimated to cost P26.5 billion.
When the project is completed, the travel time from the North to the South is expected to take only 15-20 minutes. Currently, it takes two hours.
The new connector project is one of the government’s latest initiatives to improve the worsening traffic in the Metro.
During the launch, Aquino warned of congestion in the next few years. The project is expected to be completed in April 2017, but an accelerated plan may mean completion as early as mid-2016.
“To our countrymen, I ask for a little patience and understanding. This is a huge project. We cannot just sleep and expect there to be a giant helicopter that can just plop a Skyway on the road so when we wake up, the project is complete. It’s important that we are all one in whatever adjustments we have to make to give way to this construction,” he said. (READ: Finally, Aquino approves NLEX-SLEX road links)
The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) wants the construction of the connector road to start immediately so it would be completed in time for the Leaders Meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) which the Philippines would be hosting in 2015. – Natashya Gutierrez/Rappler.com