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NLEX Connector: A welcome development in road transport system

Government executives have expressed support for the NLEX Connector which they considered beneficial in implementing developments in the country’s transport system.

This was gleaned during separate tours and briefings of key officials of the Department of Transportation (DOTr), Land Transportation Office (LTO), Metro Manila Council (MMC), and Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) hosted by Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) President and CEO Rodrigo E. Franco and NLEX Corporation President and GM J. Luigi L. Bautista.

DOTr Undersecretary for Road and Infrastructure Mark Steven Pastor, LTO Chief and Assistant Secretary Jay Art Tugade, MMC President and San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora, and MMDA Director Neomie Recio regarded the NLEX Connector as helpful in improving the efficiency of the road transport network in Metro Manila.

“As a strategic government partner, we always collaborate with our stakeholders and present them our projects for their valuable inputs. We are honored that relevant agencies are supportive of this vital road that would highly benefit many cities in Metro Manila,” said NLEX President and GM Bautista.

DOTr Usec. Pastor remarked that the project will significantly contribute to the DOTr’s goal of providing greater accessibility for every road user, conveying the agency’s commitment to implementing a holistic traffic management plan so motorists can travel seamlessly, safely, and comfortably.

“The continuous improvement of our transportation system has always been our priority, and we always make sure that the center of these improvements is all our road users. This project adheres to our plan of bringing comfort and convenience to the public through reduced traffic, resulting in unimpeded travel,” he said.

Signifying his excitement for the forthcoming opening of the first section of the NLEX Connector, Mayor Zamora said, “Malaking tulong talaga itong mga dagdag na mga daanan. Umaasa tayo na sa pagbubukas ng NLEX Connector Phase 1 ay mararamdaman natin ang pagbawas ng trapiko sa Metro Manila.”

Also looking forward to the completion of the NLEX Connector, LTO chief Tugade noted, “Kapag natapos na ang proyekto at nagagamit na ang mga lansangan na ito, nawa’y maging malaking tulong para mapagaan ang daloy ng trapiko sa Metro Manila. Sadyang pinag-aralan ang pagkakalatag ng proyekto. Maraming salamat sa MPTC sa pagpupursige ng ganitong uri ng imprastruktura.”

The NLEX Connector is composed of two sections, the España and Sta Mesa sections.  The five-kilometer España Section traverses Caloocan Interchange on C3 Road and España Blvd., while the three-kilometer Sta Mesa Section stretches from España Blvd. to R. Magsaysay Blvd., up to the vicinity of PUP in Sta. Mesa, Manila. It is seen to spur development in its surrounding areas and enable faster and more efficient inter-regional movement of people and goods.

Part of the NLEX Connector Sta. Mesa Section is the redevelopment of Magsaysay Boulevard. Apart from the rehabilitation of the existing eastbound and westbound service roads, improvement of Philippine National Railways (PNR) railroad crossing, the redevelopment project also includes relocation of electric posts, decommissioning of the Magsaysay Flyover, and traffic signalization of the Magsaysay Boulevard intersection.

The improvement in Magsaysay will yield to wider, at-grade lanes and enable easier travel to various Manila areas as the elevated expressway features on and off ramps in Magsaysay and Sta. Mesa, improving portions of the local road network such as Osmeña Highway, Nagtahan, Rizal Avenue Extension, G. Araneta Avenue, and A. Bonifacio Avenue. It will also help motorists to easily get to destinations such as Manila City Hall, Quiapo Church, University Belt, Intramuros, Rizal Park, EDSA, Gilmore, Cubao, and San Juan.

Currently, the dismantling of Magsaysay Flyover is ongoing and temporary lane closures are being implemented in the area.  Necessary measures are being done to reduce traffic slowdowns and ensure public safety, such as the fielding of traffic marshals and installation of directional signs and safety devices.

NLEX Corporation is a subsidiary of the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC), the toll road arm of the Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC).