Last week, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) confirmed that the new Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge will open by the end of July. With it, we can expect motorists that need to cross between Makati and Mandaluyong to benefit from the new bridge.
But in order to ensure that it is indeed ready for motorists, the agency recently conducted a drive-through test of the newly-constructed Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge. DPWH Secretary Mark Villar personally drove on the four-lane bridge to inspect the finished roadwork.
According to Villar, work on the 506.46-meter bridge is now complete and is set to be opened to the public very soon. This was made possible after the agency was able to finish the asphalt overlaying of the main bridge and on the approach roads.
Currently, there are still remaining works left to be completed, most of which include the protective barriers and railings, as well as the drainage system on both sides of the bridge. The new bridge was also designed to withstand high-intensity earthquakes, which the previous two-lane steel truss bridge lacked.
Once the Estrella-Pantaleon bridge is available to the public, it's estimated to benefit around 50,000 vehicles per day, as well as reduce travel time between Makati and Mandaluyong to just 12 minutes depending on where you're going of course.
The 50,000-vehicle daily capacity of the Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge is more than double the 22,000 daily capacity of the older steel bridge that was demolished about two years ago.
But perhaps the biggest benefit is that the DPWH says that it will divert some traffic away from EDSA. And given that Skyway 3 is now charging toll fees, motorists that don't want to pay those fees will have more alternate routes to choose from.