By Betheena Unite
A 3.7-kilometer stretch of the 18.68-kilometer Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 was opened Monday by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to ease traffic congestion in Buendia (Gil Puyat Avenue).
Another portion of an elevated expressway in Taguig City – a 2.2 kilometer segment of the C-5 Southlink Expressway that covers the SLEX/C5 Road to Merville in Parañaque will open today.
It is expected to benefit motorists from Parañaque, Las Piñas, and Cavite as this segment will be linked to two more segments, completing the whole 7.74-kilometer expressway project that will connect C-5 in Taguig and the Cavite Expressway.
Meanwhile, the newly opened portion of the elevated expressway starts from Buendia in Makati to Paco, Manila exiting via the Plaza Dilao Ramp.
“To ease traffic congestion in Buendia, we are opening two lanes, one of the northbound and southbound section. The 3.7 km elevated highways expand from Buendia to Plaza Dilao,” DPWH Secretary Mark Villar, who led the skyway opening Monday, said hours before the President’s 4th State of Nation Address (SONA).
Villar said a maximum speed of 40 kph will be maintained along the main viaduct while 20 kph at the ramps will be enforced. Initially, there will be no toll fee and trucks will not be allowed to use the newly opened portion for now, the secretary said.
The Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 is about 60 percent complete. The department is targeting to finish about 95 percent of the whole alignment by the end of the year to meet the target completion date which is by the first quarter of 2020.
“Section 1 from Buendia Avenue, Makati City to Quirino Avenue in Nagtahan, Manila is now 83 percent completed, while Section 3 from Ramon Magsaysay Avenue to Balintawak is 81 percent completed,” added Villar.
To date, Skyway Stage 3 Section 2A from Nagtahan to Tomas Claudio is 34 percent complete; Section 2B from Tomas Claudio to Ramon Magsaysay Avenue is at 60 percent; Section 4 from Quezon Avenue to Balintawak is at 51 percent; Balintawak to North Luzon Expressway is at 11 percent; and Section 2A1 from Tomas Claudio to PUP Sta. Mesa will soon start.
The Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 is an 18.68-kilometer elevated expressway that starts from Buendia in Makati City to Balintawak, Quezon City. It is also among the key projects under the government’s infrastructure program – Build, Build, Build – which aims to connect NLEX and SLEX, bypassing the overly congested Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA).
The project has eight access ramps/interchanges strategically located in Buendia Avenue, (South Super Highway, Makati City), President Quirino Avenue (Malate, Manila), Plaza Dilao (Paco, Manila), Nagtahan/Aurora Boulevard (Manila), E. Rodriguez Avenue (Quezon City), Quezon Avenue (Quezon City), Sgt. Rivera St. (Quezon City), and NLEX.
The Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 is expected to reduce travel time from 15 to 20 minutes from Buendia, Makati City to Balintawak, Quezon City from the current two hours.