Agri-tourism stakeholders in Talisay City, Negros Occidental, which borders this capital city to the north, are getting a boost with the completion of the final phase of access road reconstruction worth P34 million.

It is part of a multi-year program totaling PHP295 million implemented by the Department of Public Works and Highways-Western Visayas from 2018 to 2022.

As of Wednesday, the First District Engineering Office has finished the 1.17-kilometer, two-lane concrete road, with funding from the 2022 DPWH-Department of Tourism Convergence and Special Support Program, to complete the 13.02-kilometer road stretch.

In a statement, DPWH-6 (Western Visayas) Regional Director Nerie Bueno said the improvement of the entire stretch of the access road provides both locals and tourists smoother, faster and safer transportation access to various tourist destinations in Talisay City.

Famous tourist attractions in the area, situated at the boundary of Talisay and Bacolod, are the Campuestohan Highland Resort as well as the nearby Bantug Lake Ranch and the University of St. La Salle Eco Park in this city.

Encompassing the barangays of Dos Hermanas, San Fernando and Concepcion in Talisay City, the P295-million road reconstruction activity also includes the P50-million 1.58-kilometer concrete road completed in 2018; P40-million 1.6-kilometer concrete pavement, 2019; P66 million 2.64-kilometer concrete road, 2020; and PHP105-million 3.8-kilometer concrete pavement, 2021, a portion which was undertaken by the DPWH-6 regional office.

“The access road also intersects with the portion of the ongoing construction of Bacolod-Negros Occidental Economic Highway, which will eventually reduce travel time from Talisay City proper to the mountainous communities,” Bueno said.

For Negros Occidental, a top sugar-producing province, road improvement is “very essential” so that transport of sugarcanes and other agricultural products will be easier and faster, she added.PNA