The P10-billion Northbound section of San Miguel Corporation (SMC)’s Skyway Extension is now 70 per cent done and on-schedule to be finished by year-end, president and chief operating officer Ramon S. Ang announced yesterday.
The project, which SMC fully funded, will extend the Skyway from Susana Heights on the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) to Sucat and back, providing direct access to the elevated section of the Skyway.
It will connect the SLEX and the Muntinlupa Cavite Expressway (MCX) to the Skyway at Susanna Heights, bypassing Alabang to make travel from south to north via the Skyway System seamless and shorter.
“We are on track to deliver the northbound section of the Skyway Extension project by December, and with this, motorists from the south can easily access Makati, Manila, San Juan, Quezon City, and the North Luzon Expressway,” the SMC President explained.
“Under normal Metro Manila conditions, you will be lucky to get from SLEX to the North Luzon Expressway in under three hours. You would have to pass through traffic gridlocks in Alabang, Magallanes, practically the whole of EDSA, or various areas through Manila,” he noted.
“With the Skyway Extension and the completed Skyway 3, you can get there in 30 minutes without
The project, which started in late 2019, will also eliminate traffic buildup along SLEX heading to Alabang and the Alabang viaduct.
Previously, from five lanes on the SLEX, the expressway would narrow to just three lanes at the Alabang viaduct, causing huge traffic jams not just on the expressway, but also on public roads feeding into it in Muntinlupa and Las Pinas.
The Skyway Extension will expand capacity by adding three lanes northbound and two lanes southbound.
With motorists coming from Cavite, Laguna, and Batangas able to bypass Alabang, traffic in Muntinlupa and along the Alabang-Zapote Road, will ease as well.
The COVID-19 pandemic delayed the project, originally set for full completion by end of this year.
“Work had to stop after lockdown. We resumed work in mid-June and because of health protocols, we had to limit the number of workers at the site,” Ang noted.
“Apart from limitations on the workforce, we have also had to contend with delays in the shipment of materials, due to restrictions and limitations brought on by the pandemic.”
“Despite these challenges, our engineers and our contractors came through. They worked double-time, to deliver the northbound section as scheduled, by December. The southbound section will follow July next year,” he elaborated.
Currently, SMC is installing steel girders to support the expressway and laying pre-cast slabs to make up the road itself.
“After this, we only need to cement the gaps between slabs, and then apply asphalt. While the weather is also a factor, especially when doing finishing work, we don’t see any problems meeting our December
deadline for the northbound section.”
Apart from working on the Skyway Extension, SMC’s infrastructure group is almost done with improving and reconfiguring Skyway 1 and 2.
This allowed SMC to open an additional lane from Alabang to Magallanes, to ensure the smooth flow of traffic.