All systems go for new Bicol airport and LRT extension Projects
The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has finally given the go signal to the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) to construct a new international airport in Albay and a new station that will connect the LRT and MRT lines in Quezon City.
DBM Secretary Florencio ‘Butch’ Abad confirmed the release this month of the Multi-Year Obligational Authority (MYOA) for the two projects. The Bicol International Airport Development Project will replace the existing airport in Legazpi, Albay and is expected to be completed in 2016. The new airport is seen to boost tourism in the Bicol region.
Meanwhile, the LRT extension project will connect the LRT-Roosevelt station with the MRT-North Avenue station and is expected to be completed next year. The new station is seen to ease traffic in EDSA and improve passenger transfer between the two railways.
Abad said ‘The country’s public transportation system has long been due for an overhaul, and we’re making that happen. [The MYOAs are] in line with our goal to ramp up infrastructure development towards rapid, sustainable and inclusive economic expansion.’
The Bicol airport is worth Php4.7 billion, of which Php2.1b had already been spent on preparations, while the LRT extension project is worth Php1.4 billion.
Government agencies with projects that will take more than 1 year to complete are required to get a MYOA from the DBM. Before getting a MYOA, the agency must list the budget and funding strategies of a project, which is subject to DBM scrutiny.
MYOA was instituted in 2010 and ensures that government projects are completed within the given budget. It also decreases the chances of officials getting kickbacks from billion-peso projects.