PGMA breaks ground for Batangas-Laguna Toll Road 4, inspects Skyway extension

June 15, 2010 8:15 pm 

CALAMBA, Laguna, June 15 — President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo Tuesday morning led groundbreaking rites of the Toll Road 4 [TR4] Project from Sto. Tomas, Batangas to Lucena, Quezon at Barangay Makiling, here.

The road is expected to cut travel time from Manila to Lucena crossing the South Luzon Expressway and the interface of SLEX and Star Tollways in Sto. Tomas Batangas.

Aboard a shaded truck from the SLEX- Star interface, the President was received at the T4 Project by Calamba City Mayor Joaquin Chipeco Jr., Laguna Governor Teresita “Ningning” Lazaro, 2nd District Rep. Justin Marc Chipeco and the Barangay Makiling Chairman. She lowered the time capsule containing the parchment papers and blueprints, newspapers of the day and coins.

Welcome remarks, mostly expressions of gratitude, were given by Laguna Gov. Lazaro along with messages by Cong. Chipeco and Batangas 3rd District Rep. Reyes. The project briefing on the SLEX-STAR Interface (TR3) and the proposed TR4 was done by SLTC president Isaac David.

Construction worker Rolando Garido, thanked the President for the employment provided by the project. Bonifacio Khan, a locator at the Laguna Industrial Processing Zone in Lipa City, said the SLEX alone cut travel time to one hour. The T4, he said will further reduce travel time further south which is good for investors and industrial locators of the processing zones like him.

TR 4 will link Sto. Tomas Batangas to Lucena City in Quezon province covering 54.20 kilometers. As of June 4, preparation of the parcellary plan to determine affected lots for acquisition was yet underway.

The SLEX-STAR Interface is a 7.6- kilometer elevated highway that stretches from the SLEX extending from Calamba City to Sto. Tomas, Batangas connecting the SLEX to the Southern Tagalog Arterial Road (STAR) Tollway 2.

Physical accomplishment is now at 99.77 percent as the Toll Collection Equipment is yet to be installed with finishing touches at the Saimsim Bridge Ramp.

The President boarded her car for the train ride of the Philippine National Railway, basically to check the completed rehabilitation of the San Cristobal Bridge which was destroyed by typhoons Milenyo and Reming two years ago.

The President boarded the train with the media to also launch the extension of the commuter train run from Tutuban to Calamba.

While inside the train, the President briefed the media on the eventual goal of "Closing the Loop" from PNR, Light Rail Transit and Metro Rail Transit. For now, however, the PNR would simply be linking northrail to the southrail, President Arroyo said.

The train that took her and the media stopped for a few minutes at the San Cristobal Bridge in Calamba, which enabled the President to make a physical check of the bridge work with a little briefing from PNR Chief of Staff Nicolas Beda A. Priela from the Office of the General Manager.  

On alighting at the Bicutan terminal, the President and her media party took a bus ride that took them to the South Metro Manila Skyway Project, the newest project of Citra Metro Manila Tollways Corp [CMMTC], a 6.88 kilometer elevated expressway from Bicutan to Alabang that extends the 9.5 km elevated toll road from Makati to Bicutan.

Stage 2 Bicutan-Sucat section boasts of six wide travel lanes with four lanes at the Sucat Ramp toll plaza leading westward to Dr. A. Santos Avenue. The Main Toll Plaza, with six lanes on each direction, was built between Sucat and Alabang and replaces the temporary Skyway Toll Plazas near the East Service Road at the NAIA flight path.

The concrete elevated highway will be buffed by asphalt overlay to protect it from rapid wear and tear and the unfinished portion at the Sucat side is due to the delayed construction of Ramps.

When completed, by May 2011, this infrastructure will allow a quick breeze on the Skyway's elevated section from the Alabang Toll Plaza to the Buendia Off Ramp in less than 12 minutes at a speed of 80 kph. (PNA)



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