Issue of July 8, 2018
     
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Benguet
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2018
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DPWH targets to start Kennon rehab by 2019
by Hanna C. Lacsamana

Geologists from the Department of Public Works and Highways main office last week have inspected Kennon Road, which is closed indefinitely to vehicular traffic following consecutive accidents caused by erosions and landslides.

Only public utility and private vehicles for residents within communities traversed by Kennon Road are being allowed to use the shortest route to Baguio in the meantime.

DPWH-Cordillera Assistant Director Khadaffy D. Tanggol said the government geologists came to see the situation of the road themselves to be able to come up with recommendations that will address the perennial problems of the oldest and shortest access road to Baguio and other Cordillera provinces.

“We are waiting for their report. Hopefully they will be able to recommend something that would help address the landslides in Kennon Road,” Tanggol said during the Talakayan sa Environment Code radio program last Thursday.

He said the DPWH-Cordillera through the Benguet 1st District Engineering Office is currently doing its best to minimize the occurrence of rock and landslides and erosions along the road’s critical portions.

He advised that Kennon Road remains closed and still under close monitoring.

The commencement of the total rehabilitation of Kennon Road to make it an all-weather may be expected in 2019 according to DPWH-BDEO 1 District Engineer David A. Buliyat.

He said the office has included the rehabilitation of Kennon Road in the list of programs for funding during the term of President Rodrigo Duterte under the “Build, build, build” program.

He said 35 percent of the district office’s proposed budget for 2019, which is 300 percent higher than its previous annual allocation, will be programmed for the rehabilitation of Kennon Road.

In 2017, the BDEO 1 completed about P675 million worth of infrastructure projects.

Buliyat said they hope to start the road rehab in coordination with Baguio Rep. Mark Go, who has filed a bill in Congress pushing for support for the improvement of Kennon Road.

“In the program we presented to the congressman, we expect to complete the project hopefully until 2022. We are hoping that our concerned representatives will be able to defend the budget proposals we submitted,” Buliyat said.


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