THE Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said on Monday that it completed a seawall project in Eastern Samar to protect residents hit by Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan), with the first phase of the Pagnamitan Bridge project also due to be implemented this year.

The bridge is expected “to provide better accessibility along the Guiuan-Sulangan Peninsula Road and widen the waterways to reduce flooding in the area,” the department said in a statement.

The DPWH said the seawall protects residents of Barangay Pagnamitan in Guiuan from storm surges and flash floods.

“The construction of a seawall is deemed a priority to ensure that residents in the area no longer experience the destruction caused by Typhoon Yolanda in 2013,” it said.

“With a total cost of P29.64 million, the project involved the construction of a 252-meter seawall that safeguards around 237 families, government buildings, and nature reserves or protected areas,” it added.

Separately, the DPWH said it completed the final phase of construction on the Ibajay Bypass Road Widening Project, which is aimed at improving connectivity between Kalibo and neighboring towns in Aklan.

“The project involved widening of the 1.69-kilometer section of Ibajay Bypass Road as well as the installation of 165 units of LED solar streetlights,” it said.

“With the newly-widened section, the 5.49-kilometer road now better decongests the stream of vehicles along the national highway to ensure smooth commuter traffic as it serves as an alternate route going to and from the town of Kalibo,” the DPWH added.

The DPWH said the road widening cost P38.3 million and was funded by the 2021 General Appropriations Act. — Arjay L. Balinbin