The NLEX Corporation today said it is working within schedule for the construction of NLEX Connector in the first half of next year based on the contractual agreement it entered with the Department of Public Works and Highways.

The tollway company clarified that per agreement with the government, start of construction for the first section of the project, which is from C3 Road in Caloocan City up to Espana in Manila, is scheduled in May 2019.

It added however, that the NLEX Corporation and DPWH have earlier agreed to push for an aggressive timeline to move forward the construction schedule to January 2019 instead.   This to ensure early completion of the NLEX Connector which is seen as a crucial infrastructure needed to solve traffic congestion in Metro Manila.

The aggressive timeline was in consideration with the joint right-of-way or ROW program of NLEX Corporation and DPWH.

NLEX Corporation also reported that acquisition of the ROW was also in full swing as the DPWH is fully committed to provide the ROW requirements to jumpstart the construction of the NLEX Connector project ahead of its original contractual schedule.  The tollway company and DPWH are working closely for the timely completion of the project by December 2020 ahead of the original schedule of May 2021.

DPWH Secretary Mark Villar even created in 2017 a ROW task force for faster and efficient ROW acquisition and delivery.

The NLEX Connector project is an 8-kilometer, all elevated four-lane expressway which would extend the NLEX southward from the end of the NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10 in C3 Road in Caloocan City to PUP in Sta. Mesa, Manila.

The project is expected to provide seamless expressway connection between key growth areas like Metro Manila and North and Central Luzon, and the Clark-Subic corridor.  Around 35,000 motorists, especially cargo trucks, who are expected to benefit from the project will not need to use congested public roads since it will traverse mostly along the Philippine National Railways’ alignment.

The NLEX Connector is one of the first Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects awarded by the Duterte administration in 2016.