SMC unit gets original proponent status for TPLEx extension
Conglomerate San Miguel Corp.’s (SMC) proposal to extend the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx) to San Juan, La Union, has won the early approval of the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Mark Villar, Public Works and Highways secretary, told reporters on Tuesday that the department had granted SMC an original proponent status (OPS) for the project.
The TPLEx extension, submitted by SMC subsidiary San Miguel Holdings Corp. on Feb. 14, 2018, is a proposed 59.4-kilometer tollroad with four lanes. It will start from the final exit of the TPLEx in Rosario, La Union, and will run through San Juan.
An OPS gives a company a big advantage during a Swiss Challenge, a type of bidding process that allows rival firms to submit better offers. Should a superior offer emerge, the original proponent will have the right to match those terms and win the project.
The next step is for the project to hurdle the approval process of the National Economic and Development Authority.
Information posted on the website of the DPWH showed that the project will cost around P24 billion and will be divided into three phases.
The original TPLEx, which began construction in 2010, is an 88.85-km tollroad that aims to link Tarlac City and Rosario. The final Pozorrubio, Pangasinan, to Rosario section is slated for completion in June 2019, information posted on the DPWH’s website showed.
Villar spoke on the sidelines of an event opening road enhancements at the Manila Cavite Expressway, operated by Cavitex Infrastructure Corp., a unit of Metro Pacific Investments Corp.
The Cavitex enhancements officially opened today were the Southbound Flyover and so-called left turning facility toward Pacific Drive leading to Diosdado Macapagal Ave.
“With vehicular traffic at Cavitex growing, we were determined to finish the Flyover facility the soonest,” said Cavitex Infrastructure president Roberto Bonita.
The Cavitex is part of a road network being expanded by the Metro Pacific group. It will connect to the 7.7-km C5-Southlink, which will traverse Taguig, Las Piñas, Parañaque as well as the 45-km Cavite-Laguna Expressway.
Metro Pacific also operates the North Luzon Expressway and Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway while SMC operates the South Luzon Expressway, Metro Manila Skyway, Naia Expressway and Star Tollway.
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