Part of Cavite-Laguna expressway now open

Calax segment - Part of Cavite-Laguna expressway now open

MOTORISTS can now use the first 10 kilometers of the Laguna segment of the Cavite-Laguna Expressway (CALAX) from the Mamplasan Toll Barrier to the Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Interchange, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said on Wednesday.

“We all know that (All Saints’ Day) is a time we all pay respects to family and friends who have passed on, and with November 1 falling on a Friday, I’m sure many of our kababayans will take advantage of the time to do some family bonding and go on a road trip. I only see benefits in opening CALAX even on a single lane basis to decongest Laguna Boulevard, Aguinaldo Highway,” Public Works Secretary Mark A. Villar said in a statement on Wednesday.

“We are at 90% completion, the remaining 10% of the works are being fast- tracked while in operations, we hope to fully open before December steps in.”

Mr. Villar said around 10,000 vehicles are expected to enter and exit through the two access points — Mamplasan and Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay Interchange.

“This section will take 10 minutes to drive. A big cut on travel time compared to the 45 minutes it currently takes to travel Mamplasan to Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay road,” he added.

The single lane on the CALAX opened on Wednesday (Oct. 30), but only until 10 p.m.

In a statement, MPCALA Holdings Inc. (MPHI) President and General Manager Roberto V. Bontia said the lane will also be open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. from Oct. 31 to Nov. 2.

“For the daily access time starting November 3, we agreed with (Department of Public Works and Highways) that it will be Sunday to Thursday 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and giving extended time on weekends, Friday to Saturday 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. This will only be temporary, until the remaining works for these first subsections are completed,” he said.

Mr. Bontia reminded motorists to drive safely and observe traffic rules while using the partially opened lane.

“Upon issuance of the relevant certifications and permits from DPWH and Toll Regulatory Board (TRB), full access to the completed lanes and other interchanges and 24-hour commercial operations shall be possible,” he added.

The entire length of CALAX project will connect the Manila-Cavite Expressway (CAVITEx) from Kawit, Cavite to the South Luzon Expressway (SLEx) at the Mamplasan Interchange in Biñan, Laguna.

MPCALA Holdings is a subsidiary of Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., the tollways unit of Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC). MPIC is one of three key Philippine units of Hong-Kong based First Pacific Co. Ltd., the others being Philex Mining Corp. and PLDT, Inc.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin

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