Last year, the country’s first true freeway was opened to the public, the toll-free Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEX). However, since the 30-km expressway was just partially opened, only the first 18-km segment was actually drivable. So what’s the update on the remaining section?

Entire 30-km of Central Luzon Link Expressway 96% complete image

According to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the entire stretch of the expressway is nearing completion. In his latest report to DPWH Secretary Manuel M. Bonoan, DPWH Undersecretary for UPMO Emil K. Sadain said that the project is 96% complete to date.

The 18-km segment will be complemented by an additional 11 kilometers which is expected to be finished by March 2023. It will consist of the 7-km portion up to San Juan Interchange and the 4-km segment to Umangan-Julo Road at the boundary of Aliaga and Cabanatuan City before Felipe Vergara Road and Daang Maharlika.

Entire 30-km of Central Luzon Link Expressway 96% complete image

Currently, the DPWH is busy continuing works for the construction of the remaining 4-lane expressway. These include interchanges, overpasses, and underpasses from the Aliaga Section to the Cabanatuan Section whose progress was stalled in the past due to unworkable portions with problems in the acquisition of road right-of-way (ROW).

Once fully operational, the PHP 11.811 billion expressway is expected to shorten travel time between Tarlac City and Cabanatuan City from 70 minutes to just 20 minutes. In addition, it will be part of the Luzon Spine Expressway Network which is aimed at reducing travel time from the northernmost part of Luzon, Ilocos, to the southernmost part, Bicol. Last but not least, it’s also expected to expedite the transportation of agricultural goods, as well as reduce costs since CLLEX will be toll-free.

Entire 30-km of Central Luzon Link Expressway 96% complete image

“The CLLEX Project will support the country’s new vision for improving agricultural productivity under the administration of President Ferdinand “Bongbong" Marcos Jr. Using this toll-free high standard highway, palay crops and other products from Nueva Ecija - the Philippines’ rice granary, including those coming from Region 2 can reach the market centers in Metro Manila much faster and cheaper,” said Sadain.

Entire 30-km of Central Luzon Link Expressway 96% complete image

With the entire expressway set to be finished by March 2023, we’ll be holding the DPWH to their word and expect the completion of the 30-km CLLEX sooner rather than later.