The Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) assures the public that they can still use the newly-opened Skyway Stage 3 free of charge for the time being, as the agency has yet to approve the proposed rates submitted by toll operator San Miguel Corporation (SMC).
Skyway Stage 3 Quick Look: 22-minute drive from NAIAX to Balintawak
This was announced by TRB Spokesperson Julius Corpuz, who said that SMC will be allowed to collect toll fees only after the rates are formally approved, and the relevant toll matrix published for public dissemination.
SMC partially opened Skyway Stage 3 to the public on December 29, 2020, waiving toll fees for a month. After February 1, the company will begin charging fees for the use of the 18.3-km. elevated expressway, ranging from Php 110 to Php 274.
Convenience will certainly come at a cost for many motorists
The proposed rates came as a shock to motorists, many of whom are still reeling from the economic effects brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. SMC has cited several factors in determining its recommended rates, including the increased cost of the project, legal fees, and right-of-way (ROW) acquisitions.
Corpuz said that the TRB will make every effort to strike a balance between profitability for SMC’s investment and what the motoring public can afford before making a decision. “Sinusuri po natin mabuti ang lahat ng mga kunsiderasyon upang pagka nagbigay ang ating approval ang ating pamunuan kung magkano ang toll fee na kokolektahin, ay ito sana kaging katanggap-tanggap at rasonable sa ating motorista.”
(We are looking at every consideration very carefully, so that we can issue an approval on toll rates that are acceptable and reasonable for motorists)
Have you tried out the Skyway Stage 3 for yourself yet?
The recommended fees submitted by SMC to the TRB apply to Class 1 vehicles. Although the board has yet to receive a formal proposal for other vehicle classfications, Corpuz says that the rates will likely be doubled for Class 2 and tripled for Class 3.
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Joseph Paolo Estabillo