By Ferdinand G. Patino
MANILA, Nov. 10 (PNA) — The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) on Monday said that they will immediately start the planned 27-kilometer dike road in Leyte after the undertaking was given an initial budget of P4.6 billion.
In a press briefing during the Multi-Stakeholders Policy Forum “One Year After Yolanda and the Way Forward” at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), Singson said President Benigno S. Aquino III earlier gave the go signal for the construction of the Tacloban-Palo-Tanauan Road Dike Project to protect communities in Leyte against storm surges.
In his visit to Eastern Samar last Friday, the President said the concept of the project is to build a road dike four meters above sea level covering some 27 square kilometers to protect almost 30,000 homes and other structures.
In particular, Singson said the dike would protect residents in the city of Tacloban and the towns of Palo and Tanauan in Leyte from storm surges like what super typhoon “Yolanda” brought in November 8, 2013.
“We are finalizing the project as we want to start construction as soon as possible,” he said.
Singson said that aside from the road dike, the project might include building a seawall.
Once the structure is completed, he said it would protect the people and reduce the risk of another tragedy from strong typhoons.
“It’s part of the risk reduction measure of the government. To invest to protect the people,” the DPWH head said. “It will save them from another storm surge of this ‘Yolanda’ magnitude.”
Earlier, the DPWH has reported that repairs and rehabilitation of roads, bridges, schools and other government structures are now 71 percent complete a year after the storm hit several areas of the country.
November 8 marked the first anniversary of super typhoon “Yolanda” which severely battered Central Philippines, taking around 6,300 lives, more than a thousand more missing and damaged several billions worth of properties and agriculture.
The storm was recorded as the strongest typhoon that made landfall in the world in recent history. (PNA)