MANILA, Philippines – The construction of the Bicol International Airport (BIA) project is moving at a fast pace, logging an overall progress rate of 72.2 percent, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said Wednesday.
The actual construction of the airport started in December 2016.
It is comprised of Packages 2A and 2B. The DOTr said that as of January 13, 2021, the package 2A of the BIA Development project is now 88.2 percent complete.
Construction work in Package 2A is being handled by the Sunwest Construction and Development Corp. and covers the airport’s landside facilities, such as the Administration Building, Air Traffic Control Building, Crash Fire Rescue Building, and the Maintenance Building.
Package 2B of the airport project, meanwhile, is now 49.5 percent complete. Package 2B which is being handled by the E.M. Cuerpo construction company, covers the construction of the passenger terminal building (PTB), taxiway, runway extension, and other site development works.
Once completed, the Bicol International Airport, which features the iconic Mayon Volcano as its magnificent backdrop, is expected to serve a total of 2 million airline passengers every year.
The new international airport is also projected to boost air traffic in the region amid the existing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
The BIA initially started construction in 2008. However, development works were uncompleted until 2012.
“When the Duterte administration came in 2016, the airport’s Package 2A and 2B projects were continued,” the DOTr said in a statement.
An important component of the Duterte Administration’s “Build, Build, Build” Program, the BIA also intends to be an instrumental in the transformation of Albay Province, and the rest of the Bicol Region, into a strong economic contender.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade stressed the importance of having continuous transport infrastructure developments such as the BIA, which will prove vital as the country starts recovering from the impact of COVID-19.
“It can’t be denied that the aviation sector has been one of the hardest hit by the pandemic. That’s why it is important that we finish the airport at the soonest possible time, as this will absolutely give the economy a boost,” Tugade said.
“Gusto ko matapos ‘yan within the year dahil gusto na natin itong agad na mapakinabangan ng ating mga kababayan. As we ready for take-off, kung baga, dapat all systems go,” he added.
MANILA, Philippines – Nagpakalat na ang pamunuan ng North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) ng mahigit 1,200 marshalls para sa inaasahang pagdagsa ng mga motorista ngayong holiday season.
Ayon sa NLEX, ang mga marshall ay itatalaga sa security patrols, emergency response at radio-frequency identification (RFID) assistance.
Inaasahan ng toll operator ang bahagyang pagtaas ng bilang ng mga bibiyahe para samantalahin ang mahabang holiday.
Sa tala ng NLEX, nasa 288,000 mga sasakyan ang dumaan sa NLEX pati na sa SCTEX nitong buwan ng Nobyembre at inaasahang tataas ito ng 10 hanggang 12 porsiyento ngayong holiday season.
Tiniyak naman ng NLEX Corporation na mananatiling nakabukas ang cash lanes para sa mga motoristang wala pang RFID tag at ngayon lamang ulit dadaan sa expressway.
“Expect a little more queues as we near Christmas… You can see our motorists who have not gotten their RFID stickers. They still have to queue on the cash lanes. But we are trying to move it as fast as possible,” ang pahayag ni Atty. Junji Quimbo, Senior Vice President ng NLEX Corporation.
Mananatili ring bukas ang cash entry lanes sa South Luzon Expressway (SLEX), Ninoy Aquino International Airport Expressway (NAIAx), STAR at Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) para sa mga hindi pa nagpapakabit ng RFID sticker.
Sa ngayon ay maluwag pa ang sitwasyon ng trapiko sa Balintawak toll plaza bagaman may kaunting build up sa cash lanes.
Ayon kay Quimbo, nakatulong para maibsan ang mabigat na trapiko sa toll plazas ang pag-aalis sa RFID installation booths sa mismong toll gates.
“The instances of glitches are going down, we, of course, record every possible glitch that happens but the smoother flow in traffic at the toll gates especially along the RFID lanes have shown improvements. There are no more long queues there,” ang pahayag ni Quimbo. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Harlene Delgado)
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has boosted its One-Stop-Shop as more overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) return home for the holidays.
DOTr’s Office for the Transportation Security (OTS) Administrator Usec. Raul Del Rosario said this is to prevent the previous inconvenience caused by delayed COVID-19 test results.
Based on the OTS data, an estimated 5,000 OFWs arrive in the Philippines every day during the holidays.
Del Rosario also said additional Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) personnel were deployed.
The One-Stop-Shop partnered with four COVID-testing laboratories to accommodate more OFWs.
“Nagkaroon kami ng commitment among these laboratories, nag-commit sila na 24 hours ilalabas nila ang result at walang lalagpas ng 48 hours (We had a commitment among these laboratories. They committed to release the results in 24 hours and not exceeding 48 hours),” he said.
The One-Stop-Shop can process 10,000 swab tests per day, Del Rosario added.
Aside from the laboratories, there are also 21,000 slots available in hotels where OFWs can stay while waiting for their COVID-19 test results. -AAC (with reports from Joan Nano)
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