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President Duterte on Monday directed the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and other concerned agencies to fast track the construction of two bridges in Metro Manila which the Chinese government helped in bankrolling.

Duterte himself highlighted China’s “generosity” in funding the construction of Estrella-Pantaleon bridge which will replace the existing bridge connecting Estrella St. in Makati to Barangka Drive in Mandaluyong and Binondo-Intramuros bridge.

“As a friend, China has once again proved that they intend to join us in achieving lasting progress by addressing traffic congestion in Metro Manila,” he said.

Duterte ordered the completion of the projects within 30 months or even earlier.

“As an important part of our Build, Build, Build Program, I expect you to fast track the implementation and execution of these bridges, as well as all other major infrastructure projects already in the pipeline,” the President said.

Both bridges also represent the government’s desire to use connectivity and mobility as catalyst for inclusive economic growth and sustainable development, the President said.

“Indeed, the construction of these bridges will not just connect these very strategic areas, but will also contribute to our quest to spur vibrant economic activities through an efficient and reliable road transportation network,” Duterte said.

“These bridges will not only improve the capacity and the efficiency of Metro Manila’s transportation corridor by providing additional bridges and routes across the Pasig River, but will also enhance the resilience of our road network against natural disasters.

“The life of these bridges will be extended because they will become more resilient, thereby reducing bridge maintenance costs. Moreover, it will also increase the transportation capacity of Pasig River and contribute to local tourism due to the improved view of the riverine area,” the President said.