CONNECTING ROAD. A portion of the Tacloban City Bypass Road Extension. The road will connect the city to nearby Babatngon town. (Photo courtesy of Department of Public Works and Highways)

TACLOBAN CITY – The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) reported on Tuesday the various constructions for an alternative road from this city to nearby Babatngon town are in full swing with an allocation of PHP1.49 billion from 2018 to 2022.

Works included in the project known as Tacloban City Bypass Road Extension are the construction of a six-lane roadway with a total length of 33 kilometers, the construction of a drainage structure, a road slope protection structure, and two permanent bridges.

"The project based on the total released fund is now 84.69 percent complete, which is 11.28 percent higher than the target accomplishment rate. A total of PHP12.8 billion is needed to fully complete the whole stretch of the bypass road," said DPWH Eastern Visayas Regional Director Allan Borromeo in a statement.

Currently, the DPWH regional office is now working on the construction of the 1.040 kilometers concrete road and 13,859 square kilometers slope protection structure.

The rest of the bypass road project is programmed for implementation in 2023 onwards.

“Once completed, the project is expected to decongest traffic along Tacloban-Babatngon Road going to Tacloban City proper shortening the travel time from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 45 minutes, and will also complement the proposed international seaport that will be constructed in the town of Babatngon, Leyte,” Borromeo added.

The project is seen as one of the high-impact projects in Eastern Visayas.

Early this year, the DPWH fully completed the PHP2.12-billion Tacloban City Bypass Road after seven years of construction.

The project involved the opening of the road, including four-lane and six-lane roadway, construction of drainage, and slope protection structures.

The 6.4-kilometer bypass road starts at Nula-Tula village and ends at Caibaan village.

The road is seen to improve the accessibility of the road network and increase the development potential of less populated communities.

The city’s Maharlika Highway forms part of the Eastern Nautical Highway, which connects Eastern Visayas to Luzon and Mindanao.

The bypass road extension will provide an alternative highway to Babatngon town. (PNA)