We have some bad news for motorists that frequently cross the Estrella-Pantaleon (Rockwell) Bridge that connects the cities of Makati and Mandaluyong.

After postponing its closure to the public last September 2018, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has officially announced that it will be closed to traffic starting January 12, 2019 at 8:00 AM.

With it, the two-lane bridge will be demolished and replaced by a wider, four-lane bridge which they estimate will be completed some time in 2021 and will span 500 meters. The project itself is estimated to cost Php 1.5 billion and is part of a Php 5.27-billion Chinese grant that also covers other rehabilitation projects like the Intramuros Bridge in Manila.

Accommodating 100,000 vehicles daily, the closure of this key road-link could lead to heavier traffic in and around the surrounding areas. Motorists are advised to take alternate routes like the EDSA-Guadalupe Bridge and the Makati-Mandaluyong Bridge.

But with these alternate routes already congested with traffic during rush hour, the closure of the Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge may add to the already worsening Metro Manila traffic.

For now, DPWH has yet to announce if they will construct a temporary bridge in its place.