What has ‘Build, Build, Build’ achieved so far? 9845 km of roads, 2,709 bridges, 64 airport projects, 243 seaport projects



Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo

The Duterte administration’s “Build, Build, Build” program is composed of thousands of projects meant to connect, facilitate growth in 81 provinces, 18 regions around the country with an estimated cost of about P8 trillion. In the Department of Public Works and Highways alone, we are currently implementing at least 20,000 projects under the “Build, Build, Build” program.

In 2018 alone— DPWH Secretary Mark Villar reported a disbursement of P590 billion with an absorptive capacity of 92.6%. This is the highest recorded disbursement in the history of the department.

Since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed position in June, 2016, the DPWH, under Secretary Villar, has completed a total of 9,845 km of roads, 2,709 bridges, 4,536 flood control projects, 82 evacuation centers, and 71,803 classrooms under the “Build, Build, Build” program.

Moreover, the Department of Transportation (DOTr), under Secretary Art Tugade, hascompleted 64 airport projects, 243 commercial and social/tourism seaport projects, and the country’s first land port — the Paranaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX).

It has also completed the implementation of the Communications, Navigation, Surveillance or Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) — increasing operational radars from three to 13, ensuring 100% coverage of Philippine airspace for aviation safety.

This is in furtherance to the medium-term goal to increase infrastructure spending — from 5.4 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2017, to 7.3 percent by the end of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term in 2022. In the last 50 years spanning six administrations, the Philippines has only allocated an average of 2.4% of our GDP in infrastructure.

The 100 flagship projects, which is a subset of the BBB program, are the most important, game-changing projects that will have the biggest impact for many Filipinos.

9,845 km of roads completed

Of the 9,845 km of roads completed, 1,096 km are farm-to-market roads, 589 km are missing links, 418 km are bypasses or diversion roads, 220 km lead to airports and seaports, 175 km lead to economic zones, and 961 km lead to declared tourism destinations. A total of 1,121 km were maintained, 2092.89 km widened, and 1,361 km rehabilitated and upgraded.

These includes the NLEX Harbor Link, the Cavite Laguna Expressway, the Laguna Lake Highway, the Candon City Bypass Road in Ilocos Sur, the Slaughter House Road in Davao City, the Pulilan-Baliuag Diversion Road in Bulacan, the Calapan-Roxas Road in Oriental Mindoro, the Mandaue Causeway Road in Cebu, the Dipolog-Oriquieta Road in Misamis Occidental, the MSR Diversion Road in Quezon, the Bathe Dumaguete North Road in Negros Oriental, and the Taytay-El Nido Road in Palawan.

2,709 bridges completed 

Of the 2,709 bridges, 462 were widened, 108 constructed, 1,642 bridges strengthened, and 155 replaced. About 342 local bridges were also built.

These include the Lucban Bridge in Cagayan, the Marcos Bridge in Marikina, the Sicapo Bridge in Ilocos Norte, the Pigalo Bridge in Isabela, the Anduyan Bridge in La Union, the Tallang Bridge Cagayan, the Bolo-Bolo Bridge in Misamis Oriental, the Caguray Bridge in Occidental Mindoro, the Tinongdan Bridge, the Pasac-Culcul in Pampanga, the Aganan Bridge in Iloilo, the Maddiangat Bridge in Nueva Viscaya, and the Pigalo Bridge in Isabela.

4,536 flood control projects

A total of 4,536 flood mitigation structures have been completed since June, 2016, to expand protected flood-prone areas across the country.

These includes the Mandaluyong Main Drainage Project, the pumping stations at Barangays Wawang Polo and Coloong, the Flood Risk Management Project for Cagayan River, the Flood Risk Management Project for Tagoloan River, the Leyte Tide Embankment Project, and the Pasig Marikina River Flood Control Project.

 71,803 classrooms

To address the gap in physical facilities required for elementary and secondary schools nationwide, Villar noted that a total of 71,803 classrooms were constructed benefiting more than 3.2 Million learners. Another 67,608 classrooms are in various stages of implementation. These accomplishments have eased the classroom congestion, from a ratio of 1 classroom to 35 learners in 2016 to 1 classroom to 28 learners in 2018.

These include the National High School in Alaminos, Pangasinan, the Alejandra Navarro National High School in Davao City, and the Bagong Pag-Asa Elementary School.

64 airport projects

In the aviation and airports sector, the DOTr and its attached agencies have completed 64 airport projects under the Duterte administration, with 133 more ongoing. These includes the modernization and rehabilitation of Tacloban Airport and the Ormoc Airport.

New airports completed include the Bohol-Panglao International Airport and the Lal-Lo International Airport. The Sangley Airport in Cavite, which already had initial construction work last year, underwent 24/7 construction this year and had its operational dry run this October.

Construction of the new terminal of the Mactan-Cebu International Airport was delayed for 11 months in 2016. It was inaugurated in 2017 and is now fully operational.

Domestic airports also underwent improvements. To name a few -- the gateways in Camiguin, Virac, and Tuguegarao.

Meanwhile, ongoing airport projects include the Bicol International Airport which was delayed for 11 years and is now more than halfway complete; the second passenger terminal building of the Clark International Airport; the Davao International Airport; Bukidnon Airport; Surigao Airport; and Kalibo Airport.

Country’s first landport completed

Under the road sector, we opened the country’s first “landport,” the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX), a project that aims to regulate city bus flow and help ease metro traffic. Daily ridership has increased from 10,000 passengers in the fourth quarter of 2018 to 80,000 passengers by the third quarter of 2019. To date, the PITX has served a more than 14 million passengers.

243 commercial and social seaports

Around the archipelago, seaports are being upgraded and rehabilitated to better serve the public. The DOTr has completed 243 commercial and social/tourism seaport projects, while 136 are ongoing.

Notable port projects include the construction of the country’s biggest Passenger Terminal Building at the Port of Cagayan de Oro, and the rehabilitation of Opol Port in Misamis Oriental, Sasa Port in Davao, Butuan Port in Agusan Del Norte, Tubigon Port in Bohol, Limasawa Port in Southern Leyte, and General Santos (Makar Wharf).

The country’s first barge terminal, the Cavite Gateway Terminal, which aims to reduce truck traffic on major roads and offer a cost-effective access to goods between Manila and Cavite through the waterways, had been built.

On maritime safety, as of June 2019, we now have 92.17% or 533 out of 600 lighthouses operational nationwide.


For railways, DOTR has six projects with ongoing construction and one undergoing rehabilitation.

The country’s first underground railway system, the Metro Manila Subway, started work in February, 2019, and is slated to start site preparation and earthworks in December, 2019.

The much-delayed MRT-7, whose Concession Agreement was signed in 2008 but had nearly zero movement until 2016, is now 50% complete.

Approved by the NEDA Board in 2007 and stalled since 2009, the Common Station is now undergoing 24/7 construction, and is now 50% complete.

The LRT-1 Cavite Extension, delayed for 19 years, finally started full-blast construction this year.

The LRT-2 East Extension project is now in the final stages of construction and is set for completion by 2020.

The MRT-3, battered from years of poor and erratic maintenance, is now undergoing comprehensive rehabilitation with Sumitomo-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries of Japan.

PNR Clark Phase 1 is in full-blast construction and on its way to partial completion by 2021.

PNR Clark Phase 2, PNR Calamba, PNR Bicol, Subic-Clark Railway, and the Mindanao Railway are all in the pipeline, and are now undergoing various stages of procurement and pre-construction works.

Next three years

The next three years of the Duterte administration will see the completion of big-ticket projects like the Philippine High Standard Highway Network Program, which aims to build and lay the ground work for the 1,049 km of new high-standard highways and expressways in Luzon, Cebu, and Davao.

For instance, projects included in the Luzon Spine Expressway Network — a masterplan which aims to connect the northernmost part of Luzon to the southernmost part — will soon be accessible to the public.

When completed, every city in Metro Manila will be connected within a 20 to 30 minute time frame and travel time from SLEX to NLEX will be shortened from 2 hours to only 30 minutes.