The Department of Public Works and Highways Region XIII (DPWH- 13) has pushed at least 23 proposals of infrastructure projects amounting to Php1,440,642,000 billion for the next year’s Tourism Road Infrastructure Program (TRIP).
“We are currently preparing the plans and programs for calendar year 2015, included in this is the TRIP which funding has been increased relatively to the increase of budget programmed for this region,” said DPWH-13 Regional Director Danilo E. Versola.
According to him, funding for improvements of access roads for tourism will go up by at least 40% based on the DPWH-13’s proposal as compared to this year’s (2014) budget which program amounts to Php813,594,000 million to fund 14 projects.
To break down the 2015 budget for TRIP, roads leading to airports will have Php168,000,000 million, roads leading to seaports will be given Php423,000,000 million, and the biggest part of the pie, which Php849,642,000 million, will be used to fund the construction and improvements of access roads leading to tourism destinations.
Meanwhile, during the visit of DPWH Undersecretary Romeo S. Momo in the region on August 11, he mentioned that there is a need to pay focus on tourism roads as Caraga region is becoming a tourism hotspot, particularly because of the “Mini-Niagara Falls” which is Tinuy-an Falls and the unreachable deepness of Enchanted River. Usec. Momo also mentioned that Siargo Island as the surfing capital is also located in the region and is already widely recognized internationally because of “Cloud 9”.
As of August this year, the DPWH- 13 actual accomplishment for its TRIP under CY 2014 has reached 43.64%.
Caraga region aims to become the Fisheries, Agro-forestry, Mineral and Eco-Tourism (FAME) capital of the county as indicated in Caraga Regional Development Plan, and the role of DPWH in providing access roads is crucial to all of these targets, not just in tourism.