Motorists that frequently pass through Roxas Boulevard may need to carry a bit of extra patience with them in the future.
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced that a portion of Roxas Boulevard near the Libertad Pumping Station is being eyed for closure. This is due to a nearby old drainage structure that's been badly damaged over the years.
During an inspection along Roxas Boulevard, MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos said the repair of the drainage structure – a box culvert owned and maintained by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) – would require immediate closure of the southbound portion of the said boulevard.
“Heavy vehicles and trucks traversing the major thoroughfare have contributed to the damage of the drainage culvert over time. There is a danger that the drainage structure, constructed in the 1970s, would collapse, so rehabilitation must be done immediately,” said Abalos.
The DPWH South Manila District Engineering Office is already making initial repairs in the area. However, the MMDA stressed that in order for the box culvert to be fully repaired, the entire southbound segment must be closed for two to three months. The closure will allow the DPWH to build an efficient drainage system leading to the Libertad Pumping Station, preventing flooding in surrounding areas.
“The DPWH said they have to rehabilitate the drainage structure and close the entire southbound but give us three days to make a careful study of the impact of the possible road closure and make recommendations on how to divert the vehicles,” added Abalos.
Once the section of Roxas Boulevard is closed, motorists and truckers will have to take alternate routes and detours for the duration of the rehabilitation.
With the southbound direction of Roxas Boulevard currently serving at least 53,000 vehicles, the temporary closure of the segment near Libertad Pumping Station will cause a major traffic buildup. But with the box culvert badly needing repairs to avoid flooding in the area, it's a necessary (but bitter) pill for motorists to swallow.
The MMDA has yet to determine the exact date of closure.