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First phase of TPLEX to begin operations Wednesday

Motorists heading for Baguio may soon be able to slash more than 40 minutes off their travel time to the City of Pines by passing through the the first phase of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX), which will begin operations on Wednesday, Oct. 30.

According to a report aired on "24 Oras" Tuesday, the 17-kilometer-long road stretching from Tarlac City to the cities of Victoria and Gerona, Tarlac is directly connected to the Subic-Clark-Tarlac expressway (SCTEX).

From Gerona, TPLEX will have exits in Paniqui and Moncada in Tarlac; Rosales, Urdaneta City, and Pozorrubio in Pangasinan; and Rosario in La Union. Section 1 (from Tarlac City to Rosales, 49.3 km in length) is scheduled to be completed in mid-2014. The entire stretch of the TPLEX from Tarlac City to Rosario, La Union (88.85 km) is expected to be completed in 2016.

Image from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) website.
Last Friday, the Toll Regulatory Board issued a Toll Operation Permit for the expressway after Private Infra Development Corporation (PIDC) completed the construction of the first phase.

The 17-kilometer thoroughfare is equipped with hi-tech sensors, lighting and reflectors. Motorists might also expect prompt emergency response by police patrol cars, tow trucks and ambulances, which will be on standby and which can be dispatched to the scene in 10 minutes.

The tollway operator has yet to post the toll rates for TPLEX, although the television report said it will be made public soon. — Xianne Arcangel/BM, GMA News