Infrastructure Development – Private Sector Representative and Co-Chair of the Cordillera Infrastructure Development Committee (INFRACOM) Arch. Ma. Jorquesa Hakcholna (lower left) presents to the council five infrastructure development projects for the Cordillera Region to be endorsed for implementation by concerned agencies.

The Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC-CAR) approved and endorsed five infrastructure development projects for the region during its full council meeting on June 9, 2022 in Baguio City. Three projects refer to reclassification to national road of three local roads in Mountain Province; the construction of access road in Tanglag, Lubuagan, Kalinga; and the conduct of a feasibility study on the widening of or adding a lane to the Baguio-Bontoc national road

The three roads proposed to be reclassified as national roads are: The Tabuk-Paracelis-Mallig Provincial road which is 30.25 kilometers in length with rehabilitation cost of ₱1 Billion estimated in 2018; the Natonin-Aguinaldo Provincial Road with a length of 29.98 kilometers and a rehabilitation cost of ₱775 Million also estimated in 2018; and the Mountain Province-Ilocos Sur via Guinzadan Road has a length of 21.04 kilometers which traverses the Cordillera region.

In the 18th Congress, House Bills 733 and 4236 converting the Mountain Province-Ilocos Sur via Guinzadan Road and Natonin-Aguinaldo Provincial Road into national roads were filed by Mountain Province Congressman Maximo Dalog. The RDC-CAR endorsement for the conversion of these roads is needed prior to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) evaluation and assessment for appropriate funding and implementation.

The improvement of the Tabuk-Paracelis-Mallig Provincial road and Natonin-Aguinaldo Provincial road were found feasible with an Economic Internal Rate of Returns (EIRR) exceeding the NEDA-ICC hurdle rate of 10 percent based on the feasibility study commissioned by the DPWH in 2018. These roads are also found to be eligible for conversion into national roads based on the provisions of DPWH Department Order No. 133 Series of 2018.

Congressman Maximo Dalog who was virtually present during the meeting expressed his gratitude for the continuous efforts of the RDC in the development of his province and the whole Cordillera Region.

 The construction of the Tanglag access road with a 2-lane bridge in Lubuagan, Kalinga was endorsed for funding under the PAMANA Program of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity (OPAPRU).

The project cost for the construction of the proposed 2-kilometer road with a 2-lane bridge is estimated at ₱181.57 million. The project will improve access to three GIDA barangays in the area, namely, Barangay Tanglag, Mabongtot, and Dangoy and benefit a total of 538 households. It will also improve agricultural productivity and increase household incomes of farmers in these communities.

 The proposed conduct of a feasibility study on the widening or adding of another lane for the Baguio-Bontoc National Road to the DPWH-CAR was endorsed as said road is a key section of the region’s trunkline. The road directly supports the multi-million vegetable industry of the region and provides greater accessibility for about 55 percent of the region’s population.

The Cordillera Regional Development Council is the region’s highest planning and policy-making body . It is the primary institution that sets and coordinates the direction of all economic and social development efforts in the Cordillera. The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA-CAR) serves as the technical secretariat for the RDC-CAR.