The implementation of two ongoing road rehabilitation projects located along Kennon Road significantly improved, based on the findings of the Cordillera Regional Project Monitoring Committee (RPMC-CAR) during its monitoring activity and problem-solving session (PSS) conducted on March 6, 2019.

One of these projects is the rehabilitation of national roads with slips, slope collapse, and landslide along Camp 1, Kennon Road, Tuba, Benguet. The project costs P290 million. It started implementation on March 25, 2018 and, based on its revised schedule, is expected to be completed in July 2019.  From a slippage of -24.56 percent in October 25 last year, the project’s accomplishment significantly increased to 79 percent with a +0.32 percent slippage in March.  According to Engineer Dante Colangao of DPWH-CAR, the negative slippage in the latter part of 2018 was due to the lack of manpower and equipment. With the arrival of the said materials, project implementation was fasttracked.

The same project was also subjected to a PSS on November 5, 2018, during which the project contractor agreed to provide additional manpower and equipment to put the project back on track.  The DPWH-CAR was also instructed to ensure the compliance of the contractor to environmental safeguards and workmen’s safety.  The contractor’s compliance to both was evident during the March 6 monitoring activity.

The other project that was monitored involved the road widening and slope protection of portions of Kennon Road in Camps 3 and 5, Tuba, Benguet.  Worth P122 million, the project started on April 24, 2018 and is scheduled for completion on May 4 this year. In October 2018, the project posted a -28 percent slippage which, the contractors reported, was caused by the lack of manpower, equipment, and materials. This was later adequately addressed, leading to a reduction in the performance slippage by half, with the road component having a 90 percent accomplishment as of the time of monitoring.

Both projects are implemented by DPWH-CAR under the agency’s FY 2018 regular infrastructure funds to ensure the integrity of the mountain slopes of Kennon Road. These projects is part of the approved list of major and critical projects scheduled for monitoring by the RPMC-CAR in 2019.   The list is based on a set of criteria proposed by NEDA-CAR as the RPMC Secretariat, and approved by the Committee during its first quarter meeting in February.

Kennon Road has always played a significant role in the development of the Cordillera region. After a series of landslides and landslide-related accidents last year, it was closed to vehicular traffic since June 2018, as recommended by the Office of Civil Defense – CAR.  It was, however, temporarily opened to vehicles going up to Baguio on February 14-18 and February 22-March 4, 2019 to decongest traffic load along Marcos Highway during this year’s PMA Alumni Homecoming and Panagbenga Festival.

The RPMC-CAR is chaired by NEDA-CAR Director Milagros Rimando.