Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Art Tugade has said his agency is prepared to meet the demand in air, water, and land transport subsections by pushing several new projects this year.
Tugade mentioned five big-ticket transportation projects set to begin:
- PNR Bicol Line
- LRT Line 1 Extension
- Subic-Clark Cargo Railway
- MRT Rehabilitation Project
- Mindanao Railway Project
On top of the above, the government is also pushing for the completion of the following projects:
- Road Transport Information Technology Infrastructure Phase I
- construction of Sheltered Port in Barangay Pag-asa, Kalayaan
- Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project Phase I (MSCIP I) Project
- Davao Sasa Port Phase I Project
- Commercial, Social and Tourism Ports Project
- Isabela Port (Basilan) Project
- Malalag Port Project.
On his part, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark A. Villar said that they will continue the implementation of several projects in 2019. In particular are the Luzon Spine Expressway Network Program, and the Inter-island Linkage Program. The latter aims to eventually connect the entire country through a series of short and long-span bridges linking island provinces together.
Villar also said that 2019 will see the completion of two major thoroughfares in Luzon. First is the North Luzon-South Luzon Expressways (NLEX-SLEX) Connector Road, and the third section of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX).
2018 developments in air travel infrastructure
For 2018, the DOTr was able to complete three big-ticket airport infrastructure projects:
- Mactan-Cebu International Airport Terminal 2
- New Bohol Panglao International Airport
- Expanded Puerto Princesa International Airport
Construction of the 11-year delayed Bicol International Airport has also started, as well as the Terminal 2 of Clark International Airport.
Aside from these, Tugade explained that several domestic airports have been given a face lift. These are the San Vicente, Tacloban, Virac, and Maasin airports.
“Four more are undergoing rehabilitation, and five domestic airports are also programmed for improvements,” he added.
2018 development in railway infrastructure
Last year saw the establishment of the Philippine Railway Institute. The school aims to educate future train operators, drivers, and employees on global best practices in the railroad sector.
On top of this, the government also signed an ₱18-billion loan agreement with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica). The agreement is for the much-needed rehabilitation of the congested Metro Rail Transit (MRT) Line 3. Preconstruction activities for the extension of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 1 to Cavite already started last year.
DOTr has also started initiatives for three railways targeted to open by 2022. These are the Mindanao Railway, the PNR Bicol, and the PNR Calamba.