Jose Mencio FMR improvement near completion
ATOK, BENGUET – The ongoing improvement along Jose Mencio Farm-to-Market Road under the Department of Agriculture’s Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP), which started in the first quarter of 2017, is now 98.19 percent completed as of May 29, 2020.
The 11.9-kilometer road project has a cost of P202.31 million funded by the World Bank, with counterpart funding from the DA and the provincial government.
All construction activities of ongoing PRDP subprojects were suspended due to the community quarantine enforced last March which resulted to delays in subproject implementation.
According to Engr. Froilan Roman V. Pine, Rural Infrastructure Engineer assigned for Benguet province, the completion of the subproject was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It may have already been completed and turned over to the beneficiaries last April if not because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the quarantine restrictions which impeded construction works to resume,” he said.
The contract period for the FMR subproject has already ended last February 26, however, the contractor still needs to complete the rectification of defects on the concrete pavement (PCCP) as well as on the unfinished items of works such as road signs, road shoulders, curb and gutter, and concrete canal lining among others.
Meanwhile, the subproject underwent implementation delays in the preceding years caused by varying challenges on Road Right-of-Way (RROW), weather conditions and other social issues, which has critically affected the physical progress of the FMR subproject with respect to its duration. However, the provincial government of Benguet has unceasingly employed appropriate measures in resolving issues for the smooth implementation of the subproject.
To date, residents in the influence area of the subproject are enjoying a smoother ride as compared to the narrow and rugged road before the improvement of the FMR subproject. ### ELVY S. TAQUIO