NLEx Corp. on Tuesday awarded to D.M. Consunji Inc. (DMCI) the first section of an elevated expressway connecting the north and south of Manila.
“The actual work on the ground, for the first four or five [kilometers] would be towards the end of November,” NLEx Corp. president Luigi Bautista said.
Bautista said the contract for the first section of the project, which will connect NLEx from the Caloocan Interchange to España Boulevard amounted to P8 billion.
The project is expected to be completed in 20 months.
“Upon full completion in 2021, the NLEX Connector will significantly cut travel time from NLEX to SLEX by at least 60 percent. Instead of the usual 2 hours, travel time will now be reduced to about 20 minutes,” Mark Villar, secretary of the Department of Public Works and Highways said
“ It will also provide improved accessibility for cargo trucks bound for the Manila Ports (North and South Harbor) and the international airports such as NAIA and Clark.” Villar he added.
Bautista also said that theNLEX-SLEX Connector aims to decongest major thoroughfares such EDSA and C5.
He also said that the second section of the NLEX-SLEX Connector Road is expected to start by March next year.
The P23.3-billion NLEX-SLEX Connector Road is an eight-kilometer elevated four-lane expressway extending NLEX southward from the end of Segment 10 on C3 Road Caloocan City to PUP Sta. Mesa, Manila and connecting to Skyway Stage 3 by mostly traversing the PNR rail track.
The project includes two interchanges at C3 Road/5th Avenue in Caloocan and España in Manila.
Seen as a crucial infrastructure needed to solve traffic congestion in Metro Manila, the NLEX Connector is also expected to stimulate economic development in Manila, Caloocan, Malabon and Navotas, as well as its surrounding areas.
Around 35,000 motorists, especially cargo trucks, who are expected to benefit from the project, will be spared using Metro Manila’s congested city roads since they will traverse their routes mostly above the PNR alignment.