Let’s have a parade of achievements.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has recommended to Malacañang the inclusion of at least 32 completed state infrastructure projects during the visual presentation of President Aquino’s fourth State of the Nation Address (Sona) next Monday at the House of Representatives.
In a June 14 memo to the Office of the President, Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson submitted photos and videos, including testimonials, of five DPWH projects: the Aluling Bridge in Cervantes, Ilocos Sur; C-3/Araneta Avenue-Quezon Avenue Interchange in Quezon City; Plaridel Bypass Road in Bulacan; Candelaria Bypass Road in Quezon; and the Ternate-Nasugbu Road and Kaybiang Tunnel in Cavite.
In a memo dated July 11, Singson forwarded pictures and videos of 27 other completed DPWH projects, including nine in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The DPWH head furnished Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras and Presidential Management Staff chief Julia Andrea Abad copies of the agency’s inputs to the 2013 Sona.
In a report, a copy of which was furnished the Inquirer, the department’s Public Information Division noted that the construction of Aluling Bridge was conceptualized during the Marcos administration in 1978.
The project, using “five spans of reinforced concrete deck girder-type bridge and funded on a staggered basis, was damaged by flood waters sometime in 1990.”
Nine years later, the DPWH proposed the construction of a new bridge with a new alignment.
The bridge was constructed along the Suyo-Cervantes-Sabangan Road and crossing the Abra River with a total cost of P191.4 million.
Reduced travel time
The project, which connected the towns of Cervantes and Tadian, Mountain Province, “involved the construction of a 180-meter concrete girder deck slab bridge, six spans of 30-meter bored pile foundations, 128.5-meter road approaches and the installation of coco-fiber erosion control nets.”
“The Aluling Bridge now allows faster and safer movement of people, goods and agricultural products between Region 1 and the Cordillera Administrative Region. It also reduced travel time to and from Cervantes to Tadian from one hour to 30 minutes,” said Elizabeth Pilorin, DPWH public information officer.
Another DPWH project, the P430-million C-3/Quezon Avenue Interchange, allows an average of 100,000 vehicles daily “nonstop crossing of the completed interchange.”
“Travel time is reduced from 30 minutes to one minute, resulting in an average daily savings of P600,000 in fuel and vehicle maintenance costs,” said the department.
The government saved more than P104 million in the implementation of the project, which has an original budget cost of over P534 million. It has also created at least 114 jobs in the host community.
In Bulacan province, the Plaridel Bypass Road was funded by a P2.15-billion loan agreement between the Philippine and the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
The project, which forms part of the DPWH upgrading of the interurban highway system along the Philippines-Japan Friendship Highway, also “aims to ease traffic congestion in urban areas along the Maharlika Highway leading to the Cagayan Valley Road in Bulacan.”
The P520-million Candelaria Bypass Road is part of the Pan Philippine Highway, one of the country’s major arterial road networks.
The construction of the 7.52-kilometer road, which also covered three bridges, started in August 2008 and was finally completed in June 2012.
In Cavite, the P808.9-million Ternate-Nasugbu Road has reduced travel time from Manila from over four-and-a-half hours to only three hours.
The 303-meter Kaybiang Tunnel, which connects the municipalities of Ternate and Nasugbu, is one of the longest road tunnels in the country.
Other DPWH projects recommended for inclusion in next Monday’s Sona: Basilan Circumferential Road; Bongao-Nali Road and Bongao-Pahut Road, both in Tawi-Tawi; bridges along Sanga-Sanga, Bato-Bato and Lapid national roads, also in Tawi-Tawi; Midsayap-Dulawan-Makar Road and Simuay-Landasan-Parang Road, both in Maguindanao;
Lake Lanao Circumferential Road; Cotabato City East Diversion Road; Compostela-Cateel Road in Davao Oriental; Cagayan de Oro River Basin flood control project; Nueva Vizcaya-Pangasinan Road; and Cordon-Diffun-Madela-Quirino Road in Quirino province, among others.
For more updates on President Benigno Aquino III’s last State of the Nation Address, visit INQUIRER.net’s special Sona 2015 site.