Days after it gained approval from the government, San Miguel Corporation (SMC) is finally starting the construction of its proposed Pasig River Expressway Project (PAREX). 

On Friday (September 24), SMC CEO and President Ramon Ang, Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Art Tugade, and Public Works Undersecretary for Planning and Private-Public Partnership (PPP) Service’s Maria Catalina Cabral spearheaded the groundbreaking ceremony of the 19.37-kilometer elevated highway. 

The project gained an OK from the administration on Tuesday (September 21). On the same day, the parties involved signed a Supplemental Toll Operations Agreement (STOA) to seal the deal.

Photo from San Miguel Corporation

Photo from San Miguel Corporation

PAREX, which will be wholly financed by SMC, will cost a total of Php 95 billion. Once complete, the project will have a total of six lanes, one of which will connect to Skyway 3. Apart from this, the expressway will also sport a bus rapid transit system, dedicated to commuters. 

The upcoming pathway will also have infrastructures for alternative modes of transportation, specifically for bikers.

“The expressway will have dedicated bike lanes to encourage healthy, environment-friendly modes of personal transportation, as well as pedestrian walkways to encourage walking or exercise,” SMC said.

It will run along the banks of the river, from Radial Road 10 in Manila to C-6 Road or the South East Metro Manila Expressway (SEMME) in Taguig City.

“Once operational, PAREX will link the eastern and western cities of Metro Manila and will connect to the Skyway system, realizing the vision of an integrated elevated road network that will link the north, south, east, and west corridors of the capital,” SMC explained. 

As part of the plan, SMC has also allocated Php 2 billion for the rehabilitation of Pasig River, which will go primarily to dredging efforts. 

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Image credit: San Miguel Corporation