DPWH says COVID-19 impact on projects ‘minimal’ | Inquirer Business

DPWH says COVID-19 impact on projects ‘minimal’

/ 04:07 AM February 17, 2020

The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) sees minimal impact from the COVID-19 outbreak that is sweeping parts of China, which is funding some of its Metro Manila road decongestion projects.

DPWH projects with Chinese financial support include the Binondo-Intramuros Bridge and Estrella-Pantaleon bridges. These also have dozens of Chinese workers, some of whom were affected by the travel ban imposed in the midst of Lunar New Year holidays last Feb. 2.

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Public Works Secretary Mark Villar told reporters that construction activities on the two bridge projects are ongoing and there are no major issues.

“Timelines are the same. If there is any effect, it’s minimal,” Villar said.

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Both projects started in 2018 and are scheduled for completion in 2021, the DPWH had said.

The Binondo Intramuros Bridge spans 680 meters and will run from Solana Street to Binondo at San Fernando Bridge. It will also have a viaduct structure over Estero de Binondo. It was about 27 percent finished at the start of 2020, the DPWH said.

The Estrella-Pantaleon project will span 506.5 meters and will replace an existing bridge with a larger structure. It will link Estrella street in Makati to Barangka Drive in Mandaluyong. Its completion rate last month stood at 47 percent.

The bridges were among the still-few instances of Chinese financial support for the administration’s “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program. However, they are considered important components of the DPWH’s P384-billion effort to ease road congestion in Metro Manila.

The spending covers both private and public sector-led infrastructure projects that have been completed or will be built through 2023.

The DPWH is seeking to dramatically cut traffic at the 23.8-kilometer kilometers Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (Edsa)—one of Metro Manila’s busiest roads and a symbol of urban congestion in the country.

One of the largest projects under the program is San Miguel Corp.’s Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3. INQ

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
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For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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