MANILA, Philippines — One of the country’s largest tollroad operators said new projects are being accelerated in 2021, citing the need to boost the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic.
NLEx Corp., which is part of infrastructure giant Metro Pacific Investments Corp., said its projects such as the 8-kilometer NLEx Connector and the Candaba Viaduct upgrade are moving forward amid community quarantine guidelines imposed by the government.
“With all these ongoing projects, we believe that we are helping our country bounce back quickly from the global health crisis. We are not just building roads, but we are also helping build a more resilient economy,” NLEx Corp. president and general manager J. Luigi L. Bautista said in a statement on Monday.
Thus far, the NLex Connector’s first 5-km section from Caloocan to España in Metro Manila has reached a progress rate of 32 percent.
The section will be finished by the end of 2021. Moreover, the section from Espana to Polytechnic University of the Philippines in Sta. Mesa, Manila will begin construction by the second quarter of the year.
“Around 35,000 motorists daily are set to benefit from this new road. The project is also being eyed as a viable 24/7 cargo truck alternative route between north and south Metro Manila—and support business activities in the fast-growing regions in Central Luzon and Calabarzon,” NLEx Corp. said.
Apart from the NLEx Connector, the Candaba Viaduct is undergoing maintenance to “ensure the safety and driving comfort of motorists.”
The project involves the replacement of the link slabs on the Manila-bound portion of the bridge and is set for completion within May 2021.
To date, the project is already 92 percent complete as 23 out of the 25 link slabs have been replaced, NLEx Corp. said.
NLEX has also started the rehabilitation of the Meycauayan and Bigaa bridges in Bulacan.
The rehabilitation of the 45-meter Meycauayan bridge is targeted for completion by September 2021 while the rehabilitation of the 64-meter Bigaa bridge in Balagtas area is expected to be finished by August 2021.
Three lanes will remain passable to motorists while works are ongoing.
For the Meycauayan bridge, the southbound works will be from April to July and the northbound works will be from July to September. For the Bigaa bridge, the southbound repairs will be from April to May and the northbound repairs will be from May to July, the company said.
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