NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10 expected to be completed in Q3

Bu Louella Desiderio

MANILA, Philippines — NLEX Corp., a unit of infrastructure conglomerate Metro Pacific Investments Corp., expects to complete the NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10 by the third quarter, its president and chief executive officer Rodrigo Franco told reporters during the inspection of the project conducted by Public Works Secretary Mark Villar and Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade. The project is now in the final stages of construction.

“We expect to complete it around third quarter to around October,” he said.

Franco said 90 percent of the right-of-way for the project has been delivered, while construction works are now 75 percent complete.

During the same event, Villar said there are discussions with NLEX Corp. to determine if a soft opening of the project is possible by July.

“We’re hoping we can possibly soft open by the SONA of the President, but definitely by the third quarter of this year, it will be fully completed and fully open,” he said.

A 5.58-kilometers (km) six-lane elevated expressway, the project will connect McArthur Highway in Valenzuela City and C-3 in Caloocan City.

NLEX Corp. has so far spent P12 billion for the project.

When completed, the project is expected to decongest Metro Manila by providing access to North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) without passing through EDSA or the Balintawak Toll Plaza and improve movement of cargo between NLEX and Radial Road 10 (R-10).

“We expect a minimum of 30,000 to 50,000 cars a day would use Harbor Link. So, trucks which used to ply C5, Manila, Quezon City, can pass through NLEX via Harbor Link,” Villar said.

Travel time from Valenzuela City to C-3 in Caloocan City via the expressway will be reduced to only five minutes from more than one hour.

NLEX Corp. is also building the 2.6-km R-10 from C-3 interchange to Dagat-Dagatan in Navotas City, which will serve as the continuation of Harbor Link.

Harbor Link is among the projects under the government’s Build Build Build (BBB) program.

To complement the BBB, the government launched yesterday the Jobs Jobs Jobs portal, an online site for employment opportunities from all concessionaires and construction companies involved in the flagship infrastructure program.

Through the portal, Villar said the government wants to reach more Filipinos to join the infrastructure push.

He said the aim of the portal is to “create more jobs for Filipinos, address the demand for workers to ensure fast and timely delivery of BBB projects, encourage returning overseas Filipino workers (OFW) to remain in the country and encourage more OFWs to return home.”