By ALDWIN QUITASOL
BAGUIO CITY — Members of the Regional Development Council (RDC) Cordillera Executive Committee through Committee Resolution numbered 5 stated that realigning the original route of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway will be disadvantageous to the riding public as they will soon pay higher toll fees.
The RDC execom also indicated that the realignment proposal of former 5th district that the end of TPLEX be located at Barangay Caguitingan of Rosario, La Union which is about 1.48 kilometers away from the original TPLEX end at Barangay Subusub of the same municipality. There is the second proposal or option of Cojuangco that will also pass through San Fabian but will exit at the original TPLEX end. The third proposed alignment meanwhile will pass through Pozorrubio, San Fabian going to Barangay Subusub.
In the meeting of RDC Execom on January 22, the members agreed that any realignment if followed will cause increase in the transportation costs and even the prices of products coming in and out of Baguio, Benguet and the other provinces of the Cordillera Region. Benguet Representative and Congressional Committee on Public Works and Highways Ronald Cosalan said the proposal of Cojuangco to realignment will increase the project cost of TPLEX by more than P900 million.
In the resolution, the RDC stated that the original plan of TPLEX is at P3.261 billion. In the proposed realignment option 1, the project will be at P4.17 billion. While option 2 will be at P4.14 million and the third will be at P4.63 billion.
Baguio City Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan commented on the matter saying that the TPLEX project ma be delayed if some people whose houses and properties that will be affected by the construction will file complaints or temporary restraining orders against the project. He said it will eat time and the project completion will not be achieved. “The government will have to expropriate those properties and that will take long in the courts,” he said.
In earlier interviews, Cosalan said that the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) got a notice to proceed and an Environmental Compliance Certificate which he said is necessary for such infrastructure projects. He said the DPWH even held consultations with the people.
In my opinion, it is not necessary to follow the proposal of Cojuangco if only they will avoid the areas where there are conflicts, said Domogan. # nordis.net