Friday, 12 February 2010

Expressway extended to Lucena from Laguna

Joyce Pangco Pañares
Manila Standard

PRESIDENT Gloria Arroyo on Wednesday said the South Luzon Expressway will be extended to Lucena City from Laguna as part of the Urban Luzon Beltway super region.

Construction of the 54-kilometer extension will start three months from now, she said.

In May, Mrs. Arroyo said she would inaugurate the expressway, which would have been completed by that time, and break ground for the extension to Lucena City.

“This is the way to modernize a nation. You really need a beltway to ease the movement of people and the transfer of goods,” Mrs. Arroyo said.

The extension will be built through a P10-billion build-operate-transfer agreement with Manila Toll Expressway Systems Inc., a company owned 40 percent by Philippine National Construction Corp. The rest is shared equally by the local firm Alloy Manila Expressway Inc. and the Malaysian subsidiary MTD Manila Expressways Inc.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Arroyo has approved a P1-billion aid to 26 food-poor provinces that are expected to be hit hard by the drought brought by El Niño.

She ordered Social Welfare and the National Nutrition Council to start identifying the one million families who will be given rice subsidies.

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