By Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo
According to the National Statistics Authority, there are about 9.3 million vehicles competing in PH’s limited road network. Vehicle density in Manila is higher than Singapore or Tokyo. Most of the 32,770 km of national roads are at saturation levels — with EDSA exceeding its road capacity of 200,000 vehicles a day — by almost 600%.
According to the 2012 study of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), it was estimated that Metro Manila is losing R2.4 billion a day or 0.8% of the GDP. The loss does not account for time loss that should have been spent with family or friends.
One year after President Rodrigo Duterte laid out “Build Build Build,” the Department of Public Works and Highways has identified and started major road networks which the Filipino people need in order to achieve seemless travel and connectivity. In fact, DPWH Secretary Mark Villar has completed the master plan and has started the implementation of the Metro Manila Logistics Improvement Project.
In addition to the 26 existing bridges crossing Pasig River, Marikina River, and Manggahan Floodway, which cater to about 1.3 million vehicles daily, 12 new bridges in the area will be constructed to provide alternative linkages between major thoroughfares and increase the number of usable roadways that would decongest traffic in Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA) and other major roads in Metro Manila.
Included in the Metro Manila Logistics Infrastructure Network are 6 bridges crossing Pasig River, 4 bridges crossing Marikina River, and 2 bridges crossing Manggahan Floodway, including: North and South Harbor Bridge, Binondo-Intramuros Bridge, 2nd Ayala Bridge (Carlos Palanca-San Marcelino), Beata-F.Y. Manalo Bridge (Pandacan-Sta. Ana), F. Blumentritt-Antipolo Bridge, Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge, (7) Kabayani-Katipunan Bridge, Reposo-Guatemala Bridge, J.P. Rizal-Yale Bridge, G. Gabriel St.-Mercury Ave. Bridge, and East Bank-West Bank Bridge 1 and 2.
The 961-meter Bonifacio Global City-Ortigas Center Link Road Project involves the construction of a 4-lane Sta Monica to Lawton Bridge across Pasig River connecting Lawton Avenue in Makati City and Sta. Monica Street in Pasig City and a viaduct structure traversing Lawton Avenue onwards to the entrance of Bonifacio Global City. Once completed by March 2020, traveling between the central business districts of Taguig and Pasig Cities will only take 12 minutes and traffic congestion at EDSA and C-5 Road particularly along Guadalupe Bridge and Bagong Ilog Bridge will be alleviated by about 25 percent.
The Binondo-Intramuros Bridge, spanning 807 meters, is a P4.6-billion 4-lane, Steel Bowstring Arch Bridge project, which is expected to connect Intramuros at Solana Street and Riverside Drive and Binondo at San Fernando Street.
The Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge, a P1.37-billion project, will replace the existing bridge with a 4-lane twin spine steel box girder bridge, spanning 560 meters, to connect Estrella Street in Makati to Barangka Drive in Mandaluyong.
The Duterte Administration will spend around P8.4 trillion (around $160 billion-$200 billion) in infrastructure projects to usher in The Golden Age of Infrastructure in the Philippines. Government spending on public infrastructure will be increased from 5.3 percent of GDP in 2017 to around 7.4 percent of GDP by 2022.
Tags: Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo, EDSA, Japan International Cooperation Agency, Marikina River, Metro Manila, Metro Manila Logistics Infrastructure Network, National Statistics Authority, Pasig River, President Rodrigo Duterte, road network