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DPWH-7 pushes to start construction while roads are being fixed

By: Jose Santino S. Bunachita June 15,2017 - 10:34 PM

TO avoid any more delays, the Department of Public Works and Highways in Central Visayas (DPWH-7) is asking the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) to allow the construction of its P683-million underpass project along N. Bacalso Ave. even as diversionary roads in the area, which are riddled with potholes, still have to be fixed.

According to DPWH Project Engineer Roy dela Cruz, based on their initial assessment, it will take around two weeks for DPWH and its contractor to patch the roads near the project site with actual repairs set to begin on Tuesday next week.

“We will request (CCTO) that we won’t have to wait for the two weeks. We will request them to allow us to do the second (traffic) dry run on Tuesday and continue with the start of the construction of the project,” he said in Cebuano.

Last week, the DPWH and CCTO held a dry run of a traffic rerouting scheme which they planned to implement once construction of the project begins.

The scheme involved the use of small diversionary roads to ease the flow of traffic along the highway where a portion will be closed to give way to the construction of the underpass at the intersection of N. Bacalso Ave. and F. Llamas Street.

The second day of the dry run was suspended by CCTO amid complaints that the rerouting scheme lacked consultation from various sectors affected by it.

CCTO also took notice of the heavy traffic that formed after jeepneys were made to pass inner roads which were riddled with potholes.

Under the scheme, since the southbound lanes of N. Bacalso Ave., in the portion fronting McDonald’s Mambaling, will have to be closed, southbound vehicles will have to turn right to Caimito, a one-lane street.

CCTO asked DPWH to first fix all the diversionary roads, including the streets of Caimito, Ganciang and Tagunol before holding another traffic dry run and before the project could actually start.

Dela Cruz explained that the repair of the diversionary roads could not be started immediately as the budget needed for the works was not included in the P683-million contract for the underpass project.

He added that in order to avoid heavy traffic brought about by the simultaneous road fixing and project construction, DPWH can fix diversionary roads at night or early dawn during off-peak hours.

DPWH is set to meet with the CCTO today to discuss their proposal.

Sought for his comment, CCTO operations chief Francisco Ouano remained concerned about the traffic that will be caused if the city will allow the start of the project before surrounding roads are repaired.

“There’s a lot of work that has to be done. It won’t just be a few months, it will take years. We will be the one dealing with the traffic problem from that. Our concern is not just that area but the entire city,” he said.

The underpass project will take an estimated one year and six months to complete.

“We will just listen to the DPWH proposal,” Ouano said.

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TAGS: being, construction, DPWH, pushes, roads, Tuesday

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