19 March 2008

Subic Bay's New Expressway (Updated)

Note: For pictures of the new Subic Expressway, click HERE.

I am excited! I am ecstatic!

As I was driving from Manila through the stretch of road from Dinalupihan to Subic in the wee hours of the morning today, I noticed that the new Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway's (SCTex) lights were all open. I took it as a sure sign that the new Expressway would soon be open to traffic. The declared deadline of March 15 may turn out to be true after all...finally.

That would, of course, mean that travel time to Clark from Subic would be cut in half-- a total travel time of just 30 minutes. The impact is that I anticipate a trip to Manila to last a mere 1 hour and 30 minutes under most traffic conditions as compared to the relatively unpredictable 2-3 hours it currently takes just to get from Subic to Balintawak, mainly due to the slow pace of vehicles along the Dinalupihan-Hermosa-Lubao-San Fernando stretch. That leg of the journey alone typically lasts about an hour and 30 minutes, starting at the Petron station in Subic Bay.

And why shouldn't I be excited?

That means SM Clark is just a stone's throw away, as well as all the destinations that are accessible through the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport. And I am talking about Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Macau, Kota Kinabalu, Cebu, Davao and all the other great destinations that can be reached via transfers from these places such as Australia, India, Bangkok, etc!!!

For my business, that means greater market reach and breadth, convenience and of course, cost savings. For my personal life, that means greater flexibility to get from one place to another, in this country or outside. I get to be more effective and efficient in so many facets of my life. No traffic in Subic, no traffic to Clark, no traffic in Clark, no traffic to Manila via the NLEX....

...but ah, Manila is another story altogether. India instead, anyone?

Update:

The new expressway (SCTEx) will be open this Holy Week, and as of this writing is already passable to light vehicles. It will, however, be closed to traffic again starting March 25 in order for the contractor to make some "corrections" to the expressway. It will operate only from 5:30AM to 5:30PM until then. Absolutely no fees will be charged until the 25th! It will finally re-open to the public, permanently, sometime mid-April. It is a pity it will not be open for me when I drive over to Clark next week to fly to Kuala Lumpur via DMIA.

A friend of mine drove through the new expressway from Subic Tipo Highway yesterday, all the way to the Clark Logistics road, directly off NLEX, then all the way to San Fernando. He timed the run from Subic Toll Plaza to the end of the new expressway, as he turned off to NLEX, at just 22 minutes! Does this mean I can get to Balintawak in just a little over an hour?!

He was also raving about the beautiful road, which he thinks is the best in the Philippines at the moment, similar to one you would find in Japan; and the view, he excitedly strresses to me, was just magnificent!

For those coming from Manila, there is an Exit just after DAU and before Sta. Ines, which takes you directly to the SCTEx.

No reason not to take the new expressway unless you're travelling after 5:30PM!

I'll be going to Bustos, Bulacan on Friday to help parade our centuries-old family karo. I'll take the new 'freeway', shoot some pictures and post them here! ;-)

6 comments:

Senor Enrique said...

Wow! Subic to Clark at 30 mins. And Subic to Manila at under 2 hours.

That's great news!

Ang Kuwago said...

Hi Eric,

And I do hope they complete the expressway in time for Holy Week. The news says it won't be, but I am still hopeful. In any case, they say it will be in April, and that's not too bad...

All the Best to you!

FilMasons NSW said...

That is great news. That means we won't just save on travelling time but also save the planet by consuming less fuel. Smaller carbon footprints!

Next holiday will definitely try that expressway. I just do hope all the Victory Liner express will go that way as well.

Mario

VeRTiTO said...

well done

Ang Kuwago said...

Thanks for dropping by, vertito!

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