MANILA – San Miguel Corp. unit Private Infra Development Corp. (PIDC) said it is on track to complete the P24 billion Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) project.
PIDC expects to fully complete the project in 2015. The TPLEX is expected to cut travel time from Tarlac City to La Union to 45 minutes at 100 kilometers per hour.
“Construction of TPLEX is well on track and while we still have to make a few more refinements, it is safe to use. We’re opening early as service to the public,” PIDC president Mark Dumol said.
The 13.66-kilometer segment from Rosales to Urdaneta in Pangasinan will open on Saturday and aims to help address traffic woes to and from Northern Luzon during the Christmas holidays.
“Many families will be traveling to and from Northern Luzon during the Holidays, and this is our company’s Christmas present to them,” said Dumol.
Dumol added that the opening of the segment will also ease the travel of commuters heading to Manila during Pope Francis’ visit from January 15 to 19.
The TPLEX will be toll-free until January 20.
With the opening of the new section, TPLEX is now operating about 63 kilometers of road, out of the project’s total length of 88.5 kilometers.
Dumol, however, noted that the section will be closed again after the Pope’s visit to allow for finishing works.
The first section of the TPLEX was opened in 2013. From end-to-end, the TPLEX will traverse 17 towns and the cities of Tarlac and Urdaneta across Tarlac, Pangasinan, La Union and Nueva Ecija.
The project, under a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) program, is being undertaken by a Filipino consortium including DMCI Holdings Inc.