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SMC proposes to extend NAIA Expressway to BGC

Conglomerate urges gov’t to act on new toll road expansion projects
/ 03:57 PM November 01, 2017
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NOW OPEN The first segment of Ninoy Aquino International Airport Expressway is now open. It will link Terminals 1 and 2 in Parañaque City to Macapagal Boulevard and the Entertainment City in Pasay City. RICHARD A. REYES

Conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) wants to expand its NAIA Expressway (NAIAx) project to Bonifacio Global City in Taguig to provide better access of Manila’s airport complex to more areas in the capital district.

SMC announced the plan—which requires the government’s approval—in a statement on Wednesday.

It also announced that various technical studies to expand its massive southern Manila toll road network spanning South Luzon Expressway (SLEx), the Skyway system, and the Southern Tagalog Arterial Road (Star) have been completed. North of Manila, it operates the Tarlac Pangasinan La Union Expressway.

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In its statement, SMC revealed that complete detailed engineering plans for the expansion of the 7.7-kilometer NAIAx project going to BGC have been submitted to the government.

SMC said the project will decongest Magallanes and the Edsa-Pasay area. The NAIAx extension also aims to cut travel time between Coastal Road and SM Mall of Asia areas and BGC to just 10 minutes.

The NAIAx, a private public partnership project that SMC opened last year, is a key part of Metro Manila’s toll road network. Serving some 80,000 vehicles per day, it provides access to all terminals of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport from Skyway, Cavite Expressway and other major roads with its 14 on and off ramps.

SMC also wants further links for NAIAx. Among these, NAIAx ramps from the Naia Terminals 1 and 2 areas all the way to SM Sucat, where it can link up with the C5 extension project.

“This will benefit motorists heading to Sucat, Las Pinas, and C5 who usually spend anywhere from thirty minutes to an hour just getting out of gridlock along airport roads,” SMC said in its statement.

SMC president Ramon S. Ang said the conglomerate was preparing for a wave of expansion of its toll road business over the next three years.

Earlier this year, it announced an agreement with the state-run Philippine National Construction Corp. to jointly expand several such projects, valued at a combined P554 billion

“There is no stopping the Philippines’ growth. With this, more people will be travelling, more goods will be transported, so we expect that traffic volume will just get worse,” Ang said.

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He said other projects to expand its southern Manila toll road network were ready, and it was up to the government to approve and implement these.

Its new projects would decongest traditional chokepoints such as the Alabang viaduct, the Sucat and Bicutan interchanges, Magallanes, the C5 entrance and exit to SLEX, and the NAIAx entry to Skyway and also on public roads leading to these areas.

“The expansion of these major expressways is long overdue. But we’ve done our homework, we’ve invested to complete the studies and designs, and we’ve submitted all of these to the Toll Regulatory Board for their review. All these projects can be completed within three years, provided government gives us the green light to proceed right away,” Ang said.

SMC is also adding a fifth lane each to both the southbound and northbound lanes of SLEx to Calamba exit, effectively widening it to ten lanes.

It said the first phase will run from Alabang to Susana Heights. It will cost P130 million and can be completed in a year.

The remaining section all the way to Calamba can be completed by 2021— if government approves it “at the soonest possible time,” SMC said.

Moreover, it submitted a design to widen the elevated Skyway from Alabang to Sucat by two   lanes as well as extend it to the Alabang viaduct.

“This will bring the total number of elevated lanes to six–three lanes each way–with provision for a seventh lane. This project can be completed in three years,” SMC said.

Finally, SMC wants to build a down ramp from the northbound elevated Skyway towards C5/BGC. This project is expected to take a year and a half to complete.

“We’re committed to finishing these on schedule, and we are confident that these projects will greatly improve the traffic situation in Metro Manila which our countrymen have had to endure for many, many years,” Ang said. /je

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TAGS: Airport, Construction, expansion, expressway, highway, Naiax, project, San Miguel Corp., SMC, toll roads
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