MMDA opens 'Kalayaan C-5' U-turn to traffic
- Mike Frialde () - May 7, 2009 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority yesterday opened the Kalayaan Avenue-C-5 “elevated U-turn” interchange that aims to help vehicular traffic flow smoothly along the 19.7-kilometer road that straddles the cities of Quezon, Mandaluyong, Pasig, Marikina, Makati and Taguig and the municipality of Pateros.

Completed in a record time of four months, the Phase 2 (South Side) of the C-5/Kalayaan interchange (located at the intersection of Makati City’s Kalayaan Avenue and C-5) is “a testament to the MMDA’s commitment to relieve Metro Manila of its decades-old problems on traffic” according to MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando. “With the opening of the second C-5/Kalayaan Interchange, we can now further free up traffic along C-5 and Kalayaan Avenue , as well as speed up travel toward Quezon City and the southern part of Metro Manila,” Fernando said.

No less than President Arroyo formally opened the P350-million elevated U-turn interchange to traffic.

“Mission accomplished and congratulations to Bayani, it will lessen the traffic in Metro Manila,” the President said.

The C-5/Kalayaan Urban Interchange project, will now easily connect the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) in Taguig City to the north end of C-5, the MacArthur Highway in Valenzuela City and the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), according to Fernando.

Fernando said that unlike the conventional flyovers and tunnels found across the metropolis, an elevated U-turn does not take up much road space, making it more applicable in urban areas with relatively small land area. “With the limited urban space in Metro Manila, the C-5/Kalayaan Urban Interchange requires only minimal space,” Fernando said.

The first elevated U-turn interchange, located at the northbound lane of the C-5, was completed in August 2008, after only six months of construction. The second phase commenced four months later, on Dec. 2, 2008 and completed on April 17.

The full operation of the two elevated U-turn interchanges is expected to increase travel speed at the C-5/Kalayaan corridor up to 43.61 kms per hour, a dramatic improvement to the days when the C-5/Kalayaan intersection was still a four-phase traffic.

“By removing the traffic signal lights and closing the (C-5/Kalayaan Avenue) intersection, traffic flow is now continuous, providing motorists an unimpeded travel,” Fernando said.

Developed in view of the MMDA’s continuous effort to seek new alternatives to improve the metropolis’ traffic condition, the elevated U-turn scheme underwent rigid traffic simulation tests conducted by the agency’s Traffic Engineering Center (TEC) and the National Center for Transportation Studies of the University of the Philippines .

The elevated U-turn interchange was chosen over the original proposal to construct a vehicular underpass or tunnel along the C-5 road, which proved to be more impractical and expensive.

CHAIRMAN BAYANI FERNANDO ELEVATED FERNANDO INTERCHANGE KALAYAAN KALAYAAN AVENUE KALAYAAN AVENUE AND C KALAYAAN AVENUE-C KALAYAAN URBAN INTERCHANGE METRO MANILA TRAFFIC
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