June 14, 2024

The Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council-Task Force Kennon Road and Baguio City and Tuba, Benguet officials inspected the ongoing construction projects along Kennon Road to look into its progress and the possibility of reopening the highway.  

The joint inspection was led by Task Force Kennon Road Chairperso and Office of the Civil Defense-Cordillera Director Albert Mogol, Baguio City Vice Mayor Faustino Olowan; councilors Betty Lourdes Tabanda, Mylen Yaranon, and Isabelo Cosalan; Administrator Bonifacio dela Pena, and officials and representatives from Tuba; and Department of Public Works and Highways officials led by Construction Division OIC Assistant Chief Ismael dela Cruz.

Mogol said the city council requested for the inspection to look into the extent of projects being implemented along Kennon Road and the possibility of opening the road to the public.

DPWH-Cordillera Planning and Design Division Dan Michael Carmelo briefed the group on the projects implemented by the DPWH along Kennon Road and  discussed plans to be undertaken to ensure safety measures at the identified critical areas.

Twenty-one critical sections along Kennon Road are being addressed by ongoing and future projects. Most are slope protection and other protective measures to ensure safety of motorists and residents, Carmelo said.

While Kennon Road is generally safe depending on the weather conditions, he said the DPWH is currently implementing projects such as the rock netting, slope protection, retaining walls, and the proposed rock sheds. 

Carmelo said the completion of the projects is expected by 2022.

Dela Peña, who is a member of the Task Force Kennon, noted the road is unstable and unsafe. These are now the subject of a study by the DPWH to address such concerns.

Mogol said the first and primary consideration in the opening of Kennon Road to the public is the safety of motorists and pedestrians passing through and the residents in the area.

He said in the last two years since TF Kennon Road was formed, there were no recorded vehicular accidents along Kennon Road.

Mogol said the TF will hear the recommendations of engineers and other technical personnel from the DPWH and other agencies on the possible opening of Kennon Road earlier this year. – Redjie M. Cawis