Caught (up) in traffic

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Coastal Expressway

February 2012


One of the shortest tollways in the Philippines is the Coastal Expressway, which was actually a free road in the 1990’s (then known as the Coastal Road). It now connects to a longer segment that is the Cavite Toll Expressway (CaviTEx). Following are photos taken during a recon survey of an area along the expressway in relation to a traffic impact study we were conducting for a major development.

The Coastal Expressway essentially starts from the intersection of Roxas Boulevard and the Airport Road in Pasay City

There seems to be so many signs on this corner leading to the entrance to the expressway. This is an example of what not to do in as far as signage are concerned.

From the intersection, it is practically free flowing traffic leading to the toll plaza. On one side of the expressway are residential/office condominium developments and on the other side are undeveloped or under-developed reclamation areas.

The photo shows one of several small islands from across the tollway that is host to mangrove forests. These growths in turn host an entire eco-system that includes migratory birds, which makes the area a popular site for conservationists, environmentalists and bird-watching enthusiasts.

Many provincial buses use the tollway from terminals and stations in Pasay and Manila. This is because the tollway provides a direct access to the province of Cavite where many people who work or study in Metro Manila reside.

The tollway has 3 lanes per direction with standard shoulders on either side of the carriageway. The is also a median separating the opposing flows of traffic.

Signs advise for the reduction of speeds as vehicles approach the only toll plaza along at the time along the route to Cavite. There is a minor toll facility along a feeder road to the tollway along the northbound side but it seems more an accommodation rather than a full-fledged tollgate.

The Coastal Expressway toll plaza – traffic during the time of travel was light despite it being a weekday. However, traffic can be quite horrendous during peak periods and queues particularly long at the toll plaza. There are no electronic toll collection systems in place yet so all transactions are manual. The highway section widens at the plaza for the multiple booths to be able to accommodate vehicle arrivals.

Typical toll booth along the expressway

Traffic cones help guide motorists from the toll plaza who will eventually transition back to a three-lane section.

Sign indicating the boundary between Metro Manila and the Province of Cavite

Nearing the then end of the expressway in Bacoor, Cavite, one could already see the ongoing interchange construction and the unfinished section of CaviTEx.

Construction works for the approach to the overpass for what is now the Bacoor Exit. Vehicles now take the rightmost lanes to turn left towards Bacoor using the overpass that can already be seen in the photo. Vehicles proceeding towards Kawit should proceed along the tollway

At the time these photos were taken, the CaviTEx was not yet completed and the Coastal Expressway ended at Bacoor. The curve leads motorists to Bacoor town proper.

A peak at the then unfinished section of Cavitex including the uncompleted overpass

Turning towards Bacoor, motorists are greeted by another overpass on the opposing direction that leads travelers from the Alabang-Zapote Road (from Muntinlupa) or the Aguinaldo Highway towards the Coastal Expressway. Travelers wanting to proceed to Las Pinas via Quirino Avenue may turn beneath the flyover.

17Overpass from Aguinaldo Highway to the Coastal Expressway. Our vehicle’s trajectory led us to Quirino Avenue, which eventually connects to the C5 Extension

To go to Alabang via the Alabang-Zapote Road, motorists should stay on the left side of the road. To go to the Aguinaldo Highway, one must keep to the right.

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