SMC builds new ramp to ease SLEX traffic

Published November 10, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin



To ease traffic congestion on the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) while building the Skyway Extension, San Miguel Corporation (SMC) has started installing a temporary steel on-ramp connecting the Alabang viaduct to the Skyway.


Ramon S. Ang
Ramon S. Ang

The ramp will have two lanes and will be operational by December 1, 2019, expanding the northbound section of SLEX in Alabang from three to five.

“The limitations in the original design of the SLEX is that it has five lanes coming from Susana Heights heading to Alabang,” SMC president and chief operating officer Ramon S. Ang explained.

“However, this narrows to four lanes at the Alabang viaduct and connects with the Skyway at-grade that has only three lanes. This is the main reason why Alabang has always been a chokepoint for traffic,” he added.

Hence, he said that “this is the main reason why we are building the Skyway extension”.

“We want to make the northbound and southbound sections five lanes each all throughout,” Ang further said.

Less than two months ago, Skyway’s Operation and Maintenance (O&M) closed one northbound at-grade lane of the Skyway in the Alabang area to start preliminary work on the project.

The stretch of slow-moving vehicles on that day reached 19 kilometers, way above the daily average of 10 kilometers.

“My commitment to you is that by December 1, all preliminary work will be done. We will reopen the closed-off lane and restore use of all three at-grade northbound lanes. Traffic will not only return to ‘normal’ levels, it will improve because we are also opening the temporary ramp from the Alabang viaduct going up to Skyway. With a total of five lanes northbound, we can expect a significant improvement in the traffic,” Ang said.

The Skyway Extension project is a more than P10 billion undertaking funded by San Miguel to extend the Skyway all the way to the Susana Heights / Muntinlupa-Cavite Expressway (MCX).

It will add three lanes northbound, translating to additional capacity of 4,500 vehicles per hour, and two lanes southbound, which will accommodate an additional 3,000 vehicles per hour.

“By next year, September or October, we will complete the Skyway Extension. This will solve northbound and southbound traffic congestion once and for all,” Ang said.

By April 1, 2020, SMC will open the Skyway Stage 3 project, which stretches from Buendia, Makati to San Juan, Manila, Quezon City, all the way to the North Luzon Expressway.

Every year, some 1 million vehicles are added to Philippine roads, and yet for the longest time, Edsa has served as the lone connector between northern and southern Luzon.