April 14, 2014 12:58 AM
BAGUIO, Philippines - The president of the company operating the Skyway said two projects meant to help ease traffic in Metro Manila would be operational by middle of next year.
"We are required to deliver the first phase -- from Buendia to Plaza Dilao -- by mid of next year and it would be operational by then," Skyway O&M Corp (SOMCO) president Manuel Bonoan told participants of the Economic Journalists Association of the Philippines-San Miguel Corp (SMC) Business Journalism Seminar held in this city.
The P26.7 billion Skyway Stage 3 Project involves the construction of a 14.8-kilometer, six-lane elevated expressway that will connect the end of the Skyway in Buendia to Balintawak.
Citra Central Expressway Corp, the proponent of and concessionaire of Skyway Stage 3, is a joint venture among SMC, Citra Lamtoro Gung Persada and state-owned Philippine National Construction Corp (PNCC).
The project has eight access points, namely Buendia, Quirino, Nagtahan, Aurora Boulevard, E. Rodriguez, Quezon Avenue, Sgt. Rivera and Balintawak.
The project, which would link the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), will provide 6,000 direct jobs and an additional 10,000 indirect jobs during construction.
The project, which started construction early this month, is scheduled for completion by June 2016.
It is meant to help decongest Edsa and reduce travel time between Buendia in Makati City and Balintawak in Quezon City to 20 minutes or less from the existing two hours.
A Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) report said traffic congestion in Metro Manila has cost the country P2.4 billion in economic and opportunity losses.
A second project -- the P15.5 billion NAIA Expressway Project Phase 2 -- is likely to be completed by middle of next year, Bonoan said.
The project involves the design and construction of a 7.15-kilometer elevated structure from the terminus of Phase I at Sales Avenue going to Andrews Avenue, Domestic Road, MIA Road, before ending at Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard and going to/from Manila and to/from Entertainment City.
One of the Aquino administration's public-private partnership (PPP) ventures, included in this project is the construction of the 2.20 kilometer six- to eight-lane at-grade road going to the Entertainment City.
SMC, through unit Private Infrastructure Development Corp, won the contract to build the project.