Major expressway and bridge projects in Luzon and in Mindanao are set to secure approval from the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) this year, according to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
The expressway projects include the 53-kilometer Tarlac Pangasinan-La Union expressway (TPLEX) extension and the 180-km. Quezon-Bicol Expressway (QBEX).
These projects, which are in the advanced stage and are almost ready for implementation, are part of the Luzon Spine network project.
The original proponent status (OPS) has been awarded last year to San Miguel Corp. (SMC) to extend the TPLEX to San Juan, La Union for P23.9 billion.
“We expect this (decision) to come out soon… We expect the NEDA approval to follow very soon,” said Mark Villar, DPWH secretary.
SMC will finish this year the last section of the TPLEX alignment from Pozorrobio, Pangasinan to Rosario, La Union. Once completed, it will be ready to go onwards all the way to San Juan, La Union.
The DPWH has completed the full-blown feasibility study for the QBEX and once it obtains NEDA approval this year, detailed engineering design will begin by next year, said Villar.
QBEX connects Pagbilao, Quezon to the existing Maharlika Highway in San Fernando,
Camarines Sur. It is a faster alternative for travelers between Quezon and Bicol provinces.
Another major project up for NEDA approval is the P23-billion Samal Island-Davao City connector bridge.
The project was presented to the NEDA-Investment Coordinating Committee technical board on Sept. 12, 2019.
A proposal for three bridges in Cagayan including the feasibility study report and other requirements were submitted to NEDA in August last year.
These are the Alcala bridge, Pinacanauan bridge 2, and Solana bridge.
These projects are targeted to start the implementation before the end of Duterte administration.