Tuesday, March 05, 2024

CAAP bids out Bukidnon Airport’s P1-B Phase 4

MALAYBALAY CITY – The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines has updated the schedule of the bid submission and opening of the P1-billion Phase IV of the construction of the Bukidnon Airport, based on bid documents as of March 7, 2023

This 900-day phase of the Bukidnon Airport Development Project is expected to start on May 25, 2023, and to be completed on November 10, 2025.

CAAP set the new deadline for submission and opening of bids for the P970.3 million phase on March 30, 2023, according to the bid bulletin issued by Captain Edgardo G. Diaz, Chair, CAAP Bids, and Awards Committee.

The Bukidnon Airport, located in Barangay Maraymaray in Don Carlos, in the southern part of the province, is one of the flagship projects of the government in Northern Mindanao.

The phase covers the site preparation of the land side area; construction of access road and vehicular parking area; industrial lighting and exterior power distribution, nine-storey control tower building; two-story administration building; the communal toilet; waiting area; A and B ticketing booths – A (four units) and B (two units); 10,000-gallons steel water tank A and B; pump house A, B, and C; powerhouse; transform yard (two units); CSIS office building; cargo terminal building; rescue and firefighting facility; STP control room; guardhouse A & B; covered pathway, 13 Units; lifting station with 26 service manholes; water impounding system; and staff house building.

CAAP has reported about 8.26% actual accomplishment in the airport’s Phase 3 or the construction of passenger terminal building, runway strip, and runway Extension, among others as of a status report of February 28, 2023.

CAAP awarded the P958.4 million project phase to Tokwing Construction Corp./Mamsar Construction and Industrial Corporation. The 540-day project started on September 10, 2022, and is due for completion on April 3, 2024, after a revision.

Contractor Jasa Builders completed the construction of the project’s P74.5 million Phase 2 on October 9, 2022, which CAAP inspectors checked on November 16, 2022.

CAAP has reported 48.25% actual accomplishment in the airport construction’s Phase 1, which was awarded to Eddmari Construction and Trading. As of February 28, 2023, this project phase is due for completion on April 20, 2023.

The CAAP project status report, however, showed a number of adjustments in project completion.

Based on the project profile, the Phase 1 project duration was increased from 330 to 440 calendar days due to an approved variation order. The completion was first extended from June 28, 2022, to October 15, 2022. The same duration was adjusted by another approved variation order to April 8, 2023, due to “unworkable/rainy days”. Another extension was given up to April 20, 2023, due again to unfavorable conditions and delayed payments of 1st progress billing.

Although declared complete and inspected as of November 2022, the CAAP status report also cited that the project’s Phase 2, on embankment works, was also extended due to “unworkable/rainy days”.

Based on the CAAP report, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has downloaded to CAAP a total of P2.816 billion from 2019 to 2022 to the four phases of the project, which is expected to be completed in 2026.

For Phase 1, the DOTr downloaded P200 million of its annual budget to CAAP with a memorandum of agreement approved on April 25, 2019. From the 2019 GAA (General Appropriations Act), DOTr downloaded an additional P430 million.

In Phase 2, the DOTr downloaded P136.8 million of its GAA to CAAP with a MOA signed on January 10, 2019.

In Phase 3, the DOTr downloaded a total of P1.05 billion to CAAP with a MOA approved on June 10, 2021.

Finally, for Phase 4, the DOTr downloaded a total of P1 billion to CAAP with a MOA approved also on June 10, 2021.

In November 2021, then-Senate Majority Leader Zubiri reported construction of the P2 billion (USD39.8 million) Bukidnon Airport project to be fully completed in 2026.

According to the Center for Aviation website, once operational the Bukidnon Airport is expected to accommodate aircraft including the ATR-72 and Bombardier Q400.

When the Bukidnon Airport was being conceptualized, Sen, Zubiri pushed for the project and has since supported its construction. In 2012, Senator Zubiri earmarked a portion of his Priority Development Assistance Fund to start the construction of the airport.

He said he has looked for additional sources from Official Development Assistance and other international aid agencies to fund the bigger portion of the project.

He added that an airport in the province is important as the Laguindingan International Airport is set to operate in 2012. Land travel from Bukidnon to the new airport has taken much longer.

In 2011, then President Benigno Simeon Aquino tasked the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) to conduct a feasibility study for an airport “more central in Mindanao” so that distances to and from various areas will make more economic sense. Aquino had said that most Mindanao airports are located near the coast.

Initially, CAAP inspected three sites for the proposed airport, which were all considered “technically feasible”; the current site, another area in Cabangahan here in Malaybalay, and in Dabongdabong, Valencia City. (BukidnonNews.Net)

NorMin transport group rejects weeklong strike

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – A group of public transportation cooperatives here signified it would not join a planned weeklong transport strike and disassociated itself from Manila-based organizers

In a statement released on the evening of March 01, the Northern Mindanao Federation of Transport Service Cooperative (Nomfedtrasco) said it opposes the declaration of Manibela, led by its chairperson Mar Valbuena, for a nationwide transport strike.

The statement, signed by Luzminda Escobidal and Melvin Erederos, Nomfedtrasco’s chief executive officer and chairperson, respectively, noted that the group’s members are compliant and supportive of the government’s public utility vehicle (PUV) modernization program.

“There were (at least) 20 transport service cooperative members that already have operational modernized units, and they comprise 45 percent of our total membership,” it said.

Nomfedtrasco has 47 primary transport service member-cooperatives.

It also made clear that it is not affiliated in any way with Manibela, which is urging other transport groups to join the nationwide weeklong strike starting March 6.

Manibela opposes the PUV modernization plan being implemented by the Department of Transportation, which calls for the phaseout of old jeepney units.

Nomfedtrasco said it supports a memorandum circular issued by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board that has given old PUV operators and drivers until June 30 this year to join modern transport cooperatives for the upgrading program.

“The transport strike could prejudice the right of the riding public to access public transport,” it said. (Nef Luczon/PNA)

Fleet of modern buses boosts Bukidnon’s transport system

MALAYBALAY CITY — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB)-10 took a significant step forward in modernizing the transportation system by introducing 15 modern public utility vehicles (PUVs) in the first fleet of the trendy transport scene in Bukidnon province

As part of the government’s public utility vehicles modernization program (PUVMP), LTFRB-10 Regional Director Aminoden Allan Guro said that the new PUVs have a global positioning system (GPS), closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, televisions, and a cashless fare through the Automatic Fare Collection System server.

“Here in Bukidnon, our decades-old vehicles need to be upgraded so that our passengers can enjoy comfortable, safe, and reliable public transportation. Those dilapidated and old jeeps, which are more than 15 years old—some have even reached 30 years—must be replaced,” Guro said during the PUVMP launching ceremony, on February 23, at the Centennial Stage, Capitol Ground, Malaybalay City.

Modern buses are run by the Bukidnon Transport Multi-Purpose Cooperative (BUKTRAMCO), which has promised to keep service and safety at a high level. These vehicles, each with a seating capacity of 30, will be plying the Quezon-Valencia City-Malaybalay City route. The cooperative has received extensive training and is required to abide by LTFRB’s guidelines and regulations.

Office of Transport Cooperatives Chair Jesus Ferdinand Ortega said soon another group of the same PUVs would arrive to give people a better way to get around that is also more convenient and better for the environment.

“We, in the Office of Transport Cooperative, under DOTr, assure you that this will not be the first modern PUV running here in the province. There will be many more. The program also intends to provide better transportation services to the people to address air pollution and road safety issues. It is one of the government’s priority programs,” he explained.

He stressed that small PUV players could join the Modernization Program as long as they joined together, formed a cooperative or corporation, and met the program’s requirements.

Ortega said that showing off the new buses in Bukidnon is an inspiration, especially for BUKTRAMCO, and a good model for the rest of the country’s provinces.

The DOTr and LTFRB promised to keep helping the province modernize its transportation system. This is in line with the government’s goal of improving public transportation services all over the country. (RLRB/PIA-10/Bukidnon)