THE Department of Transportation (DOTr) will lead the groundbreaking ceremony of the Southeast Metro Manila Expressway, the first of three phases of the Metro Manila Expressway Project on Monday, January 8.

The MME 34.024-kilometer project involves the construction of a six-lane highway combined with an elevated and at-grade expressway with a two-way traffic flow starting in the south where it will connect to the existing Skyway Stage 1 in FTI, Taguig City and end at the Batasan Complex in Quezon City where it will connect to the North Luzon Expressway via Balagtas.

According to DOTr, the “SEMME Project seeks to address the need to provide an alternate route, linking the Southern and Eastern cities of Metro Manila, that will help in decongesting the traffic situation being currently experienced in these areas.”

The project by the Citra Intercity Tollways Inc. (CITI) as its concessionaire is under public-private partnership (PPP). The concession period is for 30 years from the issuance of the Toll Operation Certificate.

Phase 1 has an estimated cost of P45 billion; Phase 2, P25-billion; and Phase 3, P20 billion.

By Reicelene Joy Ignacio