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PIA Press Release

PGMA to inaugurate Mt Data-Bontoc road section

Baguio City (27 February) -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is set to inaugurate the Phase II or the Mt. Data-Bontoc Section of the Halsema Highway Road improvement project on Monday, March 1.

The President is expected to be briefed of the project and make a drive thru at the Boga Bridge in Mt. Data, Bauko.

The concreting/widening of Mt. Data-Bontoc Section of (Halsema Highway - Phase II) project with a total length of 50.49 kilometers started in March 2006 with a project cost of P1,094.85 million.

The Halsema Highway covering an approximate length of 180 kms is the only accessible road for vehicle travel from the premier city of Baguio City to the productive agricultural highlands of Benguet, and Mt. Province. It extends further to Banuae, Ifugao, a major tourism destination in the area.

The Bontoc-Banaue section is Phase III of the Halsema Highway and is expected to be completed by April.

With the completion of this Phase II project, the travel time from Baguio to Bontoc is reduced from seven hours to four hours which reduces fuel consumption. It is also expected to enhance agricultural and tourism development and will definitely increase transport mobility and accessibility within and outside the region.

The improved road provides for easier transport of products to the market and lessens occurrence of slides and roadcuts that have been the causes of spoilage of some products like vegetables.

The Halsema highway is a SONA project of the President which she badly wanted completed before she steps down in June. This is her legacy to the people of Mt. Province and the Cordilleras.

This is part of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's Super Regions tour with an inspection of projects in the North Luzon Agribusiness Quadrangle (NLAQ), the fifth and last of the regions identified in her 2006 development strategy which set up five growth corridors to spread development away from Metro Manila.

The other SONA project in CAR is the Bontoc-Tinglayan Tabuk Road which is presently under construction. (PIA) [top]

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