By Mortz C. Ortigoza
|DPWH XI Regional Director Mariano R. Alquiza inspects the on-going road|
upgrading project at Brgy. Lavigan Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental.
(This road section leads to the famous three generations lighthouses at
LINGAYEN – The chief of the 2nd Engineering Office of the Department of Public Works & Highway based here said that the government spends at most P15 million for the construction of a kilometer of national highway.
Eng. Elpidio Paragas explained that a kilometer of road without a shoulder costs the government P15 million.
“Basta sa carriage lang. Walang shoulder na maganda,” he said in Filipino.
He explained that if the construction bided to private contractors by the DPWH is for re-blocking it costs the public coffer P12 to P13 million for a kilometer of the national highway.
Re-blocking, he said, is removing those damaged parts of the highway and replaced them with a new concrete.
He stressed that a 1.3 kilometer asphalt overlay cost the government P10 million a kilometer.
Asphalt overlay is a pavement surface treatment that combines one or more layer of asphalt with one or more layer of fine aggregate. In the United States, chip seals are typically used on rural roads carrying lower traffic volumes, and the process is often referred to as "asphaltic surface treatment"
“It’s P10 million but the thickness (of the asphalt) is two inches (only),” he said.
Paragas cited that the price is different if the thickness of asphalt is four inches.
Construction of public infrastructures like highway in the Philippines bided to private contractor goes into different process.
A source at the DPWH who asked anonymity explained that what makes DPWH projects more expensive than the one built by the private sector are due to the following instances.
He said if a private entity like the Chinese Chamber Commerce can construct a P350,000 more complete school house, the DPWH or Department of Education through a private contractor spends P650, 000 for the same size, width, and height school edifice that sometimes lacks a door knob, ceiling, toilet, and paint.
He said it becomes more expensive because of the following government sanctioned deductions: Engineering and Administrative Overhead Expenses, 3.5%; Value Added Tax, 12%; Contractor’s Profit (CP), 10%; Overhead Contingency (OC), 10% or a total of 35.5% or P216,000.