NLEX Corp. said Wednesday it expects to start the operations a section of the P23-billion NLEX Connector by next month.
NLEX president and general manager J. Luigi Bautista said the Caloocan-España section of the NLEX Connector was more than 90-percent complete and could open by December.
The segment has on and off ramps and toll plazas along C3 Road and España Boulevard, crosses over the Blumentritt Station of Light Rail Transit Line 1 and Dimasalang Bridge and uses steel box girders for its curved and highly-elevated areas.
The new road, which is also a part of the Luzon Spine Expressway Network, offers a much-need recourse to shorten the travel time of cargoes going to and from the north and south of Luzon.
Bautista said the whole Caloocan-Sta. Mesa stretch of the NLEX Connector would be fully operational by second quarter of next year.
“This project augurs well for the transport industry as we expect trucks to have an easier access to trading centers in Central and Northern Luzon without having to squeeze through congested roads in Metro Manila,” he said during the NLEX Transport Conference.
The eight-kilometer NLEX Connector is divided into two sections: the España and Sta Mesa sections. The five-kilometer España section runs from Caloocan Interchange on C3 Road to España Blvd.
The three-kilometer Sta. Mesa section runs from España Blvd. to R. Magsaysay Blvd. to Sta. Mesa, Manila.
Designed to cater to all vehicle classes including trucks, NLEX Connector intends to spur economic progress by improving the travel of motorists especially those in the logistics sector as the new road will shorten the travel time of cargoes.
It is estimated that at least 35,000 vehicles would benefit from the new road a day. It is also expected to improve the connectivity between airports and seaports.
Once fully completed, this will reduce travel time from NLEX to South Luzon Expressway to 20 minutes from the usual two hours, while Clark to Calamba will just be 1 hour and 40 minutes, instead of three hours.