Skyway 3 set to open in December

Robie de Guzman   •   October 20, 2020   •   1054

MANILA, Philippines – The entire 18-kilometer Skyway stage 3 expressway will have a soft opening in December, the San Miguel Corporation (SMC) announced Tuesday.

SMC President Ramon Ang said the company was confident it would be able to open the Skyway 3 by December despite continuous rains hampering finishing works, including the laying and proper curing of asphalt.

Ang also committed that for the first month, motorists can use the entire stretch of the toll road from Buendia to NLEX for free.

“While we’re still doing a few finishing works, we want the public to be able to use Skyway 3 already and benefit from the convenience and ease of travel that it will bring,” Ang said in a statement.

“We have all waited long for this project, so this is the best way we can welcome everyone, by making Skyway 3 free for one month,” he added.

Skyway 3 connects the South Luzon Expressway and NLEX and will serve as an alternative to EDSA with its access points that traverse Makati, Manila, San Juan, and Quezon City.

The toll road is expected to cut travel time between the country’s two main expressways to just 20 minutes from the 3 hours at present.

“With Skyway 3, we will improve the daily commutes and lives of so many Filipinos. We will lessen their time spent in traffic on the road, we can increase both their productivity and time spent with their families,” Ang said.

“Apart from this, the transportation of goods from north and south Luzon will also be so much easier, faster, and more efficient. This will be a big boost to our economy and support growth throughout the regions,” he added.

For over a year now, SMC also partially opened for public use the Buendia to Plaza Dilao section of Skyway 3. It has remained open and free to date for use by the public without any toll.

After completing the entire structure of Skyway 3 ahead of its October 31 deadline, SMC also earlier announced that it was targeting to deliver the northbound section of the Skyway extension project, which connect SLEX directly to Skyway from Susanna Heights in Muntinlupa, by December.

With this, travel from Susanna Heights through the Skyway System including Skyway 3, all the way to the Balintawak toll plaza of the NLEX, will only take 20 minutes, Ang said.

Meanwhile, travel time from Magallanes to Balintawak will be just 15 minutes; Balintawak to NAIA will be just 15 minutes, and Valenzuela to Makati will only take 10 minutes.

Toll Regulatory Board approves provisional rates for Skyway 3

Robie de Guzman   •   March 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The provisional toll rates for the Skyway Stage 3 have been approved, the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) on Friday said.

For class 1 vehicles, the provisional toll rates would be:

  • Buendia to Sta. Mesa ₱105.00
  • Sta Mesa to Ramon Magsaysay ₱30.00
  • Ramon Magsaysay to NLEX Balintawak ₱129.00
  • Buendia to NLEX Balintawak ₱264.00

Class 1 vehicles include cars, jeepneys, vans, and pick-ups.

For Class 2 vehicles or buses, trucks, and cars with trailers, toll rates are doubled.

While vehicles under Class 3 or large trucks will have to pay rates thrice the price of Class 1.

The TRB said the provisional toll fee matrix will be published once a week for three consecutive weeks and a bond will be required to be posted by the Petitioner.

“Please note, however, that the approval of provisional toll rates does not automatically mean that the proponent may immediately be given the authority to start collecting toll fees,” the board said.

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) is the private proponent of the Skyway project and is the parent company of CITRA Central Expressway Corporation.

The TRB said that before SMC could collect toll charges, the Skyway Stage 3 has to be at least 95% complete, the project should be able to operate safely and commercially, and that the expressway must be equipped with a toll collection system.

“Upon compliance with the above-stated requirements, the publication of the toll fee matrix, and posting of the required bond, a TOP (Toll Operating Permit) may be issued together with the Notice to Start Collection,” the board said.

SMC confirms Skyway 3 to remain open; ramps at 97% completion

Aileen Cerrudo   •   March 16, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — San Miguel Corporation (SMC) has confirmed that the Skyway Stage 3 will remain open to motorists amid misunderstanding with the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB).

SMC President Ramon S. Ang said he has relayed this commitment to Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade.

In a statement, the SMC said the misunderstanding started when the TRB insisted that Skyway 3 cannot start full operations and collect toll until all ramps are 100% complete.

Ang reiterated that their supplemental toll operation agreement with the TRB states that the SMC can begin collecting at 95% completion of construction.

Ang reported that the ramps are at 97% completion. He also reiterated the need for collection for maintenance and to speed up the completion of the ramps.

“We need sufficient funds for the toll road’s daily maintenance, proper long-term upkeep and to keep it safe and efficient for the motoring public. As Skyway 3’s losses have been mounting because TRB keeps delaying the start of toll collection, the quickest way for our infrastructure unit to speed up 100% completion of the ramps would have been to close Skyway 3,” Ang said.

The SMC previously announced that the 18-kilometer elevated expressway will be closed beginning Tuesday (March 16) in compliance with the TRB directive that all ramps should be completed. However, the TRB clarified it did not issue a directive on the indefinite closure of Skyway Stage 3.

Ang also noted the concessions they have to make in the interest of the public.

“Skyway 3 is new, but heavy everyday use causes it to deteriorate if not maintained properly. We spend a lot for its upkeep, and at the same time lose a lot in foregone revenues. We cannot operate this and serve people if the project is not generating revenues,” he added.

The SMC had also revised the originally proposed fare matrix to significantly lower toll rates, to ensure that motorists will not bear the heavy burden of high toll fees, especially amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

“Basically, we have done everything to make sure we can viably operate Skyway 3 right away, so we can serve motorists and fulfill our goal, which is to lessen traffic in Metro Manila and hopefully, through better connectivity, create more jobs and economic opportunities for more Filipinos,” Ang added. -AAC

MRT-7 project opening eyed in 2022 – SMC

Robie de Guzman   •   February 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – San Miguel Corporation (SMC) is looking to open the Metro Rail Transit Line 7 (MRT-7) in December 2022, the company’s president, Ramon S. Ang said as he reported about the project’s progress on Friday.

Ang said the construction of the project is at about 54 percent complete, with significant advances in its electrical and mechanical works. the Elevation requirements and tunnel lengths of the rail are also finished.

“I’m excited to share with you the progress we have made on our MRT-7 project. Despite its many challenges, we are now halfway done with construction and are expecting delivery of the first batch of trains from South Korea Hyundai Rotem,” he said in a Facebook post.

“We are looking to open this vital rail network in less than two years,” he added.

I’m excited to share with you the progress we have made on our MRT-7 project. Despite its many challenges, we are now…

Posted by Ramon S. Ang on Thursday, February 18, 2021

Ang said they are expecting to complete major milestones of the project this year, including the construction of MRT-7 stations, as well as the arrival and the testing of the first batch of trains.

Once completed, the project will connect MRT-3 and Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) and can ferry passengers from Quezon City to San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan.

“Together with Skyway 3 and our other ongoing and planned infrastructure projects, MRT-7 will further improve urban mobility by linking 14 stations from San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan to MRT-3 and LRT-1,” he said.

The project is envisioned to improve road traffic situation and spur economic growth in Bulacan.

“By providing a seamless public transport system, we will significantly ease road traffic congestion, reduce commute times, and improve quality of life,” Ang said.

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