A Nationbuilder’s Manual – Manila Bulletin


Former Build, Build, Build Committee Chair Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo’s book takes the reader through 29,264 kilometers of roads and 5,950 bridges across the Philippines

UPCOMING ROAD WORK Cover of Night owl

Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo Night owl is a detailed overview of where the Philippines is going, as well as where they are going. In 342 pages, it’s several books at the same time. It is part of a historical account of Philippine infrastructure over the past 50 years and beyond. It is part of a progress report on the Build, Build, Build program in progress of the Duterte administration. It is part of a roadmap on the vision to connect our 7,641 disparate islands across Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao by land. Both a travelogue and a memory, it is also part of a plan for the future of every Filipino, even a leaflet for the emerging generations of nation builders, investors and partners.

In a word, Night owl, dedicated to the 6.5 million Filipino workers who have gone from Build, Build, Build to Reality, takes a close look at 29,264 kilometers of roads, 5,950 bridges, 11,340 flood mitigation structures, 222 water centers evacuation, 150,149 classrooms, 214 airport projects, and 451 seaport projects built in the past five years.

As former chairman of the Build, Build, Build committee of the Department of Public Works and Highways, Lamentillo also discusses in this book the massive national construction initiative, a medium-term development strategy dubbed the Golden Age. Philippine infrastructure, both the small things and the bigger picture, highlighting with the same care small details like the Infra-track application and its integrated geolocation, its satellite technology and drone surveillance, that have been put in place in accordance with the government’s mandate of increased transparency and accountability, as well as an overview of how Build, Build, Build and each of its many projects relate to the connectivity master plan of ASEAN.

CHASING PAVEMENTS The author of the book and former chair of the Build, Build, Build committee Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo

In Night owl, the numbers speak loud and clear, measuring achievements in kilometers or how travel time between places is reduced from hours to minutes. The figures also include the cost of many projects, including how they were funded, whether through national government funding, public-private partnerships, or official development assistance.

In a word, Night owl, dedicated to the 6.5 million Filipino workers who have gone from Build, Build, Build to Reality, takes a close look at 29,264 kilometers of roads, 5,950 bridges, 11,340 flood mitigation structures, 222 water centers evacuation, 150,149 classrooms, 214 airport projects, and 451 seaport projects built in the past five years.

BUILDING BRIDGES A broadcast in the book on former Secretary of Public Works and Highways Mark Villar

Yet Lamentillo imbues the nuts and bolts with personal anecdotes that make it possible for every road, bridge, airport or seaport to take the reader to, say, the Seven Falls of Lake Sebu via the 101-kilometer road network from Surallah – Lake. Sebu – Maitum Road connecting South Cotabato and Sarangani or from NLEX to SLEX, once a distance of at least two hours between Alabang and Quezon City in Metro Manila, via the 17.973 kilometer Skyway Stage 3, which now only takes no more than 20 minutes. It details, for example, how the scenic 24.22 kilometer Daang Katutubo in Pangasinan will provide Kankanaey, Bago and Ibaloi groups in Barangay Mapita with access to markets and basic social services or how to get their products to shopping malls for farmers in remote areas. Isabela’s rutted areas, which previously made a 74-kilometer detour, now only take half an hour, thanks to the new 450-meter Pigalo Bridge connecting Angadanan and San Guillermo.

Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo (Noel Pabalate)

With prefaces by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, Executive Secretary Salvador C. Medialdea and Secretary of the Department of Public Works and Roads Mark A. Villar, Night owl by Anna Mae Yu Lamentillo, published by Manila Bulletin Publishing Corporation, connects us in more than one way. His detailed discussions of roads and bridges will inform policy debates today and tomorrow. A record of this generation’s legacy for the information and inspiration of subsequent generations, filled with how infrastructure interventions can be solutions to national issues such as identity, poverty and security, it is a map as well as a guide on the road to progress.


SUBSCRIBE TO THE DAILY NEWSLETTER

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

About Irene J. O'Donnell

Check Also

Denver Manual High School to Lose JROTC Program

One of Denver’s oldest and most reputable high schools is losing a program that former …