By: Jose Santino S. Bunachita, Morexette B. Erram February 16,2018 - 11:00 PM

The dilapidated Ouano Ave. needs to be rehabilitated but the project should be completed as early as possible, especially since the road is a major business thoroughfare whose closure could result in huge losses for businesses.

Business leader says a year to finish Ouano Ave. project is too long

Anticipating “huge” business losses resulting from infrastructure projects, businessmen urged government to ensure projects like the concreting of Ouano Ave. are finished at the earliest possible time.

Businessmen are however aware of the need for road improvement projects.

Robert Go, president of the Philippine Retailers Association (PRA) Cebu chapter, said businesses will have to adjust to the expected traffic congestion caused by the upcoming road concreting of Ouano Ave. next month and the tri-level pass on UN Ave. later this year.

“I think yes, it’s true that businesses have to adjust because of the traffic that it will cause. But on the other hand, whoever is the contractor, they should work on the project fast. If they can, they should do it on a 24-hour basis,” Go told Cebu Daily News.

He cited “huge” losses on businesses especially since their deliveries, which are done every day almost on hourly basis, will be affected.

The P169.9 million road concreting project of Ouano Ave. by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH-7) was awarded to WT. Construction Inc.

The six-phase project is expected to be completed in 360 days.

But Go said almost a year to complete the road concreting of the 1.9-kilometer highway is too long. He said DPWH should look for ways to force the contractor to finish the project at an earlier time, even if it may mean incurring more money.

Go said retailers will have to look for ways to cope with the hassle resulting from the project.

Businesses especially the cargo and forwarding firms and those that use heavy vehicles, will just have to avoid the rush hours.


The Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue (TEAM) is also looking into exempting M. Logarta Ave. from the ordinance imposing a truck ban on that thoroughfare, if the post-dry-run assessment will reveal the need to accommodate trucks on the highway.

“We’re planning to lift the truck ban on M. Logarta Ave. since it is the nearest alternative road which can divert the volume of traffic once rehabilitation of Ouano Ave. starts. But we will wait for the outcome of the dry-run because it needs the approval of the traffic board,” Team Chief Glenn Antigua explained.

The dry run on Feb. 27 will test the rerouting scheme which is to be implemented when rehabilitation work starts on Ouano Avenue, a 1.9 kilometer stretch from the Mahiga Creek bridge to the Mandaue Sports Complex.

For their part, Go said retailers will have to also look for their own ways to cope with the hassle brought by the project.

Delivery trucks, he said, can look for alternative routes for them to take in order to avoid having to pass through Ouano Ave.

But even this will need support from the local government, he said.

“We have to look for roads to pass through because we cannot stop deliveries because once we do, it will have a domino effect. More roads should be opened. Many cars go through smaller roads to avoid traffic in the highway. But when you pass through small roads, there are many obstructions like parked vehicles, tents,” Go said.

Ouano Ave. is an important highway for delivery trucks as this connects to the Cebu International Port (CIP) and the rest of the ports in the North Reclamation Area (NRA).

It is also the road from Mandaue City that connects to S. Osmeña road in Cebu City in the (NRA).

Since most warehouses are located in Mandaue City and further up north in the towns of Consolacion and Liloan, Ouano Ave. is vital in the delivery of goods to Cebu City and other neighboring areas.

This is why Go said he also understands the need for the road concreting project to be done since the current state of the road is very sorry, being dilapidated with many potholes.

Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) President Stanley Go earlier asked businesses to sacrifice a little while the project is ongoing, citing its benefits later on.

So even if the Ouano Ave. and UN Ave. projects will bring monstrous traffic problems in the Mandaue area, he said these will still have to be undertaken by the government.

“At the end of the day, doing something is still better than doing nothing. The issue of traffic will not get any better unless you invest in these big projects. We should welcome these projects for us to improve our situation,” Go told CDN.


The rerouting scheme to address the projected traffic congestion in the area will be implemented in six phases, based on the progress of work on the project. Each phase is estimated to take two months.

Phase 1 will close three inner lanes for vehicles coming from Cebu City entering Mandaue City. The outermost lane will be left open to traffic for light vehicles.

The south-bound lanes will not yet be affected.

Heavy vehicles, such as trucks and buses, will be diverted into M. Logarta Ave. and F. Zuellig Ave.

Antigua, in an interview yesterday, said the one-day dry-run does not entail the lifting of the truck ban in Mandaue City, which prompted him to advise truck and bus drivers to travel before or after rush hour.

Meanwhile, preparations are now underway for the rehabilitation project.


DPWH – 7 Regional Director Ador Canlas told CDN in a separate phone interview that they have completed fixing the numerous potholes on all two lanes of F. Zuellig Ave. which will serve as another diversion road for trucks bound to northern Cebu.

“We had to make sure that all the dilapidated parts of F. Zuellig Ave. will be fixed considering that trucks are expected to traverse in the area. This is to avoid accidents and further damage once construction begins,” said Canlas.

Antigua, on the other hand said they have successfully cleared all illegally parked trucks on the road. He said they initiated an information drive in the first week of February to direct truck drivers and operators to vacate the area.

“They were given one week to leave F. Zuellig. Otherwise, we issued them citation tickets. Actually, F. Zuellig is a street so trucks and cars shouldn’t park there. Anyway, it is ready for the dry-run,” he explained.

In addition, Antigua said that Team will deploy around 10 traffic enforcers particularly on the streets branching out of Ouano Ave.

“We may deploy more (if the project will start). But it will all depend on the outcome of the dry-run,” he added.

Antigua also advised motorists, especially those driving private vehicles, to avoid Ouano Ave. once the dry-run starts if they don’t want to get stuck in the inevitable traffic in the area.

“There are a lot of access roads to Mandaue City. They can take Lopez Jaena St., M.J. Cuenco Ave. or through the streets in Barangays Panagdait and Banilad. The hassle would be lesser if they just avoid Ouano,” he said.

Cebu City

Meanwhile, the Cebu City Traffic Operations (CCTO) announced that they may also come up with traffic adjustments within Cebu City especially that vehicles coming from Cebu City are the ones affected by Phase 1 of the rehabilitation project.

CCTO Director Francisco Ouano said they will await instructions from the DPWH – 7 and Team.

“We were not able to attend the meeting with the DPWH – 7 since we have a prior commitment but rest assured, once we can coordinate with them and Team, we may do our part, too,” Ouano stated.

All of the eight lanes comprising Ouano Ave. will be rehabilitated after mounting complaints of uneven road surfaces and potholes.

The causeway is usually travelled by trucks going in and around Cebu International Port, the adjacent five piers of Cebu Port Authority in Cebu City, and various shipping yards in North Reclamation Area (NRA).

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TAGS: business, finish, leader, Ouano, project, says, speed, YEAR

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