DPWH Secretary Mark Villar. (File photo)

MANILA – More big-ticket projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) particularly the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (Edsa) decongestion program are expected to be finished in the first month of the year.

According to Secretary Mark Villar, several undertakings that will help lessen or end traffic woes along the said major thoroughfare will soon be inaugurated.

“We can expect the bridges across Pasig river to follow, these are the big-ticket projects of EDSA decongestion,” he said in a video posted recently on his Facebook account.

Among the projects under the program was the 18-kilometer Skyway Stage 3 project which was partially opened on Dec. 29. It will be fully operational on Jan. 14.

Villar and San Miguel Corporation (SMC) president Ramon Ang led the event on Tuesday, where motorists were able to access the elevated expressway for free for a month.

The DPWH chief said the project, linking the northern and southern portion of Metro Manila will reduce the usual two-hour travel from the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX)s to only 30 minutes. Makati to Quezon City will only be 20 minutes away.

The Skyway Stage 3 is an 18-km. elevated expressway spanning from Buendia in Makati to Balintawak in Quezon City.

Early this year, two-big ticket projects under the Edsa decongestion masterplan was also completed: the NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10, a 5.58 km, 6-lane divided elevated expressway utilizing the existing PNR railroad tracks connecting McArthur Highway, C-3 road in Caloocan and Malabon, and the NLEX Harbor Link R-10 Exit Ramp — a 2.6km, 4-lane elevated ramp which connects Caloocan, Malabon, and Valenzuela to Manila.

Villar added that the other projects that are expected to be finished soon are the BGC-Ortigas Link Bridge, the Pantaleon Estrella Bridge, the Binondo Intramuros Bridge, among others.

“The BGC bridge, Estrella-Pantaleon bridge will soon be finished. So in 2021, we assured that these big-ticket projects of President Duterte will be inaugurated,” he said. (PNA)