Cebu News

PB to DPWH: Build rotunda in lieu of underpass project

Robhe Jane C. Yara - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines —  The Cebu Provincial Board has urged the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to stop its road project, which has remained unfinished at the intersection of U.N. Avenue and Plaridel Street in Mandaue City, and consider installing a roundabout instead of the planned underpass.

A resolution urging the DPWH to abandon the original plan and instead build a rotunda to expedite the road repair was approved en masse last Monday.

A roundabout is a road junction at which traffic moves in one direction around a central island to reach one of the roads converging on it. In an interview with The Freeman, Cebu Provincial Board Member Glenn Anthony Soco said the proposed tri-level structure in the area which was awarded to a Leyte-based contractor in 2017 is saddled with several legal issues resulting in a very slow progress of work.

In fact, the PB also passed a resolution in December last year authorizing Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia to sue the DPWH officials over the unfinished project. A temporary repair was undertaken by DPWH following PB’s move but the problem has not been solved until now.

According to Soco, the unfinished road project in the area has caused a serious “black eye” on the image of Cebu as a premier tourist destination.  Soco, who sponsored the resolution together with PB Member Andrei "Red" Duterte, cited how the unfinished project has been stalled, affecting many motorists with the road portion dilapidated, dusty, muddy, and flooded when it rains.

He also pointed out several "red flags" of the project, including it having no clear traffic management plan, the issue of the prioritization of projects to be done in that area to solve traffic congestion not being followed, and no public consultation was held before its implementation.

Soco said the Infrastructure Development Committee of the Regional Development Council 7 (IDC-RDC) had already asked DPWH to build more alternate roads first before they implement a tri-level project on the said intersection.

Soco emphasized the implementation of a roundabout as ideal, complimenting the area's landscape which could only cost around P54 million and be accomplished in weeks, granting the roads within the intersection have already been widened. 

He added that with right of way (ROW) issues, the lot owners had earlier expressed support of the roundabout initiative. — FPL (FREEMAN)

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