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Work on Tarlac-La Union toll road underway

[ ] June 15, 2011

Construction of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx) is under way even as another bypass from the North Luzon Expressway is being planned, according to Trade Undersecretary Cristino Panlilio

This developed as the government is set to bid out the operation and maintenance (O&M) for the linked up Light Rail Transit line 1 and Metro Rail Transit line on July11.

Panlilio said earth-moving and soil compacting works are being done up to Gerona, Tarlac, from the end of the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway in La Paz, Tarlac.

He said the target is to have that stretch asphalted and operational by the middle of next year

Panlilio said right-of-way problems in the TPLEx have been solved, paving the way for the ground works of the road construction.

TPLEx is an 88.58-kilometer toll road being built by the Philippine Infrastructure Development Corp. (PIDC), the consortium which holds the 35-year contract to build, operate and maintain the road

The four-lane highway runs from La Paz, Tarlac, to Rosario, La Union and connects to the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway.

The new highway, originally set for completion in 2013, is expected to cut travel time by an hour for farmers and traders carrying agricultural products to Manila from Northern and Central Luzon.

PIDC is composed of San Miguel Corp., DMCI Holdings Inc., First Balfour Inc. and EEI Corp.

Panlilio said another major infrastructure project is expected to ease travel in Bulacan.

Panlilio said earth moving and soil compacting are also under way between the Tabang and Sta. Rita exits of NLEx to give way to a diversion road that will bypass the towns of Plaridel and Baliuag on the way to San Miguel, Bulacan.

According to Panlilio, this will particularly benefit commuters going to Nueva Ecija.

The proponent of the project is the Department of Public Works and Highways, which recently announced that efficiency in its bidding processes has reduced the cost of projects by 30 percent.

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