Manila Bulletin

NLEX be­gins ex­pan­sion work on 3 ma­jor toll plazas

- By EM­MIE V. ABADILLA Business · Disasters · Manila · Iceland · Belarus · Belgium · Meycauayan · Bocaue · Austria · Metro Manila · Quezon City · Quezon · Bulacan · Manila North Tollways

The Manila North Toll­ways Cor­po­ra­tion (MNTC), builder and con­ces­sion­aire of the ex­press­way, is cur­rently un­der­tak­ing a mas­sive R354-mil­lion con­struc­tion pro­gram for ad­di­tional toll lanes in three ma­jor toll plazas to im­prove its ser­vice in the North Lu­zon Ex­press­way (NLEX).

Cov­ered by the pro­gram, which be­gan last month and is ex­pected to be com­pleted in May 2017, are the Bal­intawak, Min­danao, and Mey­cauayan Toll Plazas.

In Oc­to­ber last year, MNTC fin­ished the ex­pan­sion of the Bo­caue Toll Bar­rier, in­creas­ing the num­ber of toll lanes from 26 to 34.

Since their com­ple­tion, the ad­di­tional eight lanes, com­posed of four man­ual lanes, two Easytrip lanes and two mixed lanes, have al­lowed mo­torists to con­tinue to ex­pe­ri­ence speedy toll trans­ac­tions even dur­ing peak hours and hol­i­days when traf­fic vol­ume on the ex­press­way rises sharply.

“Im­prov­ing the ca­pac­ity of our toll plazas would mean more com­fort­able travel ex­pe­ri­ence for our mo­torists,” ac­cord­ing to Ro­drigo E. Franco, MNTC pres­i­dent and CEO.“The new toll lanes will bring re­lief by re­duc­ing wait­ing time at the toll plazas.”

At the Bal­intawak Toll Plaza, MNTC is con­struct­ing eight more toll lanes to in­crease the to­tal from the cur­rent 17 to 25 toll lanes.

A new toll plaza in a fish­bone con­fig­u­ra­tion is be­ing con­structed to serve the grow­ing num­ber of mo­torists trav­el­ling be­tween Metro Manila and the prov­inces in Cen­tral and North­ern Lu­zon.

Mean­while, a three-lane toll plaza, also fea­tur­ing a fish­bone de­sign, is be­ing built at the NLEX Min­danao Av­enue.

Since it opened in 2010, the Min­danao Toll Plaza, cur­rently with only six lanes, has been pro­vid­ing mo­torists from Que­zon City with a con­ve­nient al­ter­na­tive en­try to the ex­press­way.

MNTC is also ex­pand­ing the south­bound toll plaza in Mey­cauayan, Bu­la­can from four lanes to five. The com­pany will move the cur­rent toll plaza a few me­ters ahead of its ex­ist­ing lo­ca­tion to make room for the ad­di­tional toll lane.

To bet­ter serve mo­torists at this key toll plaza, the Mey­cauayan In­ter­change is un­der­go­ing other en­hance­ments that in­clude the sig­nal­iza­tion of the Mey­cauayan east round­about and the con­struc­tion of two ad­di­tional exit ramps in Brgy. Pan­dayan and Brgy. Libtong.

To al­low the con­struc­tion to pro­ceed un­ham­pered, MNTC tem­po­rar­ily closed the left­most lane of the south­bound por­tion of the Bal­intawak Toll Plaza.

“Mo­torists head­ing to­wards the Bal­intawak and Min­danao toll plazas as well as the Mey­cauayan south­bound toll plaza are, thus, ad­vised to keep right as the left­most lanes of all three toll plazas will like­wise be closed,” Franco noted.

To as­sure that mo­torists pass­ing through these three toll plazas will con­tinue to ex­pe­ri­ence safe and con­ve­nient travel even while con­struc­tion is go­ing on, a traf­fic man­age­ment plan has been put in place around the work ar­eas.

As part of this plan, MNTC, in co­op­er­a­tion with the Toll­ways Man­age­ment Cor­po­ra­tion (TMC) and lo­cal traf­fic au­thor­i­ties, has de­ployed traf­fic per­son­nel in the ar­eas to keep traf­fic mov­ing smoothly.

In ad­di­tion, por­ta­ble toll col­lec­tion booths equipped with por­ta­ble toll col­lec­tion gad­gets have been set up to aug­ment the toll col­lec­tion points in the three toll plazas to en­sure con­tin­ued speedy toll trans­ac­tions.

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