Traffic on N. Bacalso to open by September
TO DISPEL fears of worsening traffic horror in Metro Cebu, officials from the Department of Public Works and Highways in Central Visayas (DPWH – 7) announced that traffic flow in the south will improve by September.
DPWH – 7 Director Ador Canlas said the northbound and southbound lanes of N. Bacalso Avenue, where the P638-million Mambaling Underpass is being constructed, will be opened to vehicular traffic this September.
He said this will allay fears of a traffic nightmare in Metro Cebu especially that the build phase of the P946-million U.N. Avenue Mandaue Tri-level Project will officially start on Monday, July 23.
“We’re doing our best to make sure traffic will not reach a standstill. While the Mambaling underpass is another story (from the U.N. Avenue Tri-level Project), our commuters from the south can expect a slight ease there by September,” he said.
Despite protests from the business sector and motorists from the northern portion of Metro Cebu, the U.N. Avenue Tri-Level Project, which includes an underpass, a flyover, and road expansion components, will push through.
The contractor, B.M. Marketing, and DPWH – 7 will mobilize heavy equipment, and start clearing U.N. Avenue and nearby areas such as Plaridel Street from any obstruction such as trees and electrical posts on Monday.
Meanwhile, the legal team of DPWH – 7 has identified 44 structures in Mandaue City included in their road right-of-way (ROW) acquisition.
They also revealed that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – 7 (DENR – 7) found 987 trees, both in Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu Cities, which will be affected by the construction.
Lawyer Brando Raya, legal officer for DPWH – 7, said during Thursday’s stakeholders meeting for the U.N. Avenue Tri-Level Project, that owners of the affected properties will cooperate with the ROW.
The multi-million tri-level project will be constructed through a design-and-build scheme. Its design stage, which started last December 2017, was completed last June.
But businessman-turned-whistleblower Crisologo Saavedra criticized DPWH officials for not being transparent in its procurement process.
“I am not here to stop the project. But did (they) perform the preliminary design and construction studies?” he asked.
In response, Canlas said the project is part of the Cebu North Coastal Road Project (CNCRP) study conducted in 2010.
“In the design-and-build scheme, it is the task of the contractor to complete and come-up with the design which will include the traffic management plan. It was presented before the LGUs (local government units) of Lapu-Lapu City and Mandaue City,” he added.
The U.N. Avenue Tri-Level Project is expected to be completed by June 2020.
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