Motorists can expect to see better roads and highways in the coming years after the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) recently received the latest master plan for the development of High Standard Highway (HSH) in the Philippines.
The master plan was given by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) as a gesture of support for the country's effort to invest in high-quality infrastructure for improved national connectivity and accessibility.
“We are grateful for JICA’s technical capacity and expertise in world-class infrastructure for it is crucial not just in decongesting highly urbanized areas but also in achieving the 2040 National Development Plan of making the Philippines a prosperous country by investing in high-quality infrastructure,” said Roger 'Oging' Mercado, DPWH Secretary.
The new Highway Masterplan proposes the construction of 4,400 kilometers of HSH Class 1 composed of 406km existing roads, 265km that are under construction, and 3,279 km of new highways to be implemented along major transport corridors across the country. About 4,600km of HSH Class 2 (regional high standard highway) roads will branch off from the HSH Class-1 to provide connection to sub-regional centers, important ports, and airports not covered by HSH Class-1.
All in all, that means the proposal involves about 9,000 kilometers of HSH Class 1 and HSH Class 2.
Aside from the master plan itself, JICA's development assistance also covers the pre-feasibility study of 4 major road and bridge projects. These include the Agusan Del Norte – Butuan City Logistical Highway in Region 13, Cebu Circumferential Road in Region 7, Central Mindanao Highway along the Cagayan De Oro-Malaybalay Section in Region 10, and the 2nd San Juanico Bridge in Region 8.
With the completion of the master plan and feasibility studies, the DPWH believes the country is one step closer to building a faster, safer, resilient, and environmentally friendly road transport network that supports national goals of rapid, inclusive, and sustained economic growth.