Over the next decade, the Philippines government is set to spend US$164.7 billion on infrastructure as part of the country’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ programme, initiated by President Duterte.

To realise their ambitious goals, the Government requested the Asia Development Bank (ADB) to help the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to conduct pre-investment activities that will in turn help the Government expedite the review and approval process and shorten start-up periods for priority infrastructure projects.

After a rigorous process, Arup was selected for two of the three major packages under the Infrastructure Preparation and Innovation Facility (IPIF) Output 1 – Roads and Bridges and Output 3 – Transportation.

Road and bridge projects

Under Output 1, Arup is helping the DPWH prepare feasibility studies, developing masterplans and strategies for the implementation of new inter-island bridges, tunnels and highways.

This task involved an overview project to set priorities of the various inter island and highway connections and identifying those more beneficial to study further. Out of this came eight projects covering pre-feasibility, feasibility and reference designs for large scale bridge, viaduct and highway crossings. We also undertook strategic studies for the Central Visayas to improve transport as well as a comprehensive master plan to improve and integrate a new and existing road network around Laguna Bay.

In addition to the initial assessments, we were also tasked to provide training and support to DPWH to build capacity and move towards implementing the agreed final infrastructure projects.

Rail, public transport, port and airport projects

Under Output 3, we are supporting the DOTr in a strategic transport planning review that covers rail, aviation, sustainable transport and maritime projects and assisting in the preparation of high priority projects whilst recommending the priority of the others. 

The package involves assessments of 13 projects, including the 102km Tagum-Davao-Digos segment of the Mindanao railway project and the Davao High Priority Bus System.

Another major project is the North-South Commuter Railway, providing the commuter, commuter express and airport express services, linking the north and south of Metro Manila. After the civil design, we are also taking the ‘shadow operator’ role to look at the deliverables from an operations and maintenance franchise perspective and assist the procurement process to contract award for both the civil works and the operation and maintenance.

A better life with better connectivity

Drawing upon our global expertise, Arup developed a set of solutions and schemes and has successfully advised and supported the Philippines government towards starting some of their flagship projects under the ‘Build Build Build’ initiative.

These projects will help shape a better-connected Philippines, dramatically improving major city access and driving sustainable development and inclusive growth of the country.