The Department of Transportation took advantage of the long weekend that ended yesterday with the marking of Bonifacio Day to conduct a series of inspections of seaports and airports in the provinces of Samar, Cebu, Aklan, and the cities of Tacloban and Dumaguete.
On Saturday, Team DOTr’s first stop was Calbayog City in Samar, where Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade led the inspection of the Calbayog Airport to check on the progress of its construction.
The team then inspected the Manguino-o Port, also in Calbayog.
“It is important that we inspect these airports and seaports, especially those that were in the path of the strong typhoons that recently barreled through the country. We must make sure that operations in these facilities will not be disrupted, and that these are safe for operators and passengers to use,” Tugade said yesterday.
The Manguino-o Port was damaged by Tropical Storm Tisoy (Kammuri) and will undergo rehabilitation starting this month.
Rehabilitation works will cover the construction of a continuous Ro-Ro (roll-on/roll-off) ramp and a new Port Operations Building. Partial operability is slated before the end of 2021
Tugade’s team immediately proceeded to Leyte to check on the progress of the Tacloban Airport Development Project.
They met with the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) project management office and the contractor of the New Tacloban Airport Development Project, for a more comprehensive update on the project’s timeline and deliverables.
The DOTr Team also visited the Tacloban Port in Leyte to check its status and the ongoing developments, allowing Tugade to interact with port employees.
The team then flew to Bantayan Island in Cebu, for their last stop of the day, to inspect the construction works at the Bantayan Airport, where Tugade noted that its runway is now 100 percent complete. The airport’s perimeter fence is also about 75 percent complete.
He said the total project is now about 85 percent complete, with the last stages of concreting the 1.2-kilometer runway extension estimated to be completed by the end of the year.
On the second day of inspection, Team DOTr landed in Dumaguete City to inspect and check on the progress of the Dumaguete Airport Development Project.
Tugade and his team of officials inspected the newly-completed expansion project of the airport’s passenger terminal building, as well as the asphalt overlay and shoulder grade correction of its runway.
They then conducted a flyover inspection of the New Siquijor Airport where the passenger terminal building, powerhouse, and vehicular parking area were completed on Oct. 30, 2020.
From Siquijor airport, Tugade and his team also inspected the progress of work being done on the Kalibo International Airport Development Project in Aklan.
They underwent a walk-through of the airport work area and inspected the site development works for a new apron, taxiway, passenger terminal building, vehicle parking area, and the airport access road. This development project is expected to be completed by July 2021, with the PTB improvement project now 98 percent complete, and will be ready for operability before the end of this year.
Although not included in their itinerary, Team DOTr decided to seize the opportunity to conduct a surprise inspection at nearby Roxas Airport in Capiz to check on the progress of the ongoing site acquisition.
The Team made the rounds at the Roxas Airport facilities, and also checked the proposed site acquisition for expansion. The team also inspected the completed asphalting of the runway shoulders and strip grade correction. The initial phase of the Roxas Airport Development project was completed last year. Joining Tugade during the weekend inspection were DOTr Undersecretary for Finance Garry De Guzman, Office for Transportation Security Administrator Undersecretary Raul Del Rosario, DOTr Chief of Staff and Assistant Secretary for Procurement and Project Implementation Giovanni Lopez, Philippine Ports Authority General Manager Jay Santiago, CAAP director general Jim Sydiongco, and DOTr Assistant Secretary for Aviation and Airports Jim Melo.*PR