AS A civil engineer, fourth district Provincial Board Member Nestor "Bay" Tolentino must have always thought what is good for Pampanga's infrastructure particularly roads and other land networks.

The soft-spoken legislator of the province is on the proposal to build an access road for truckers doing quarry activities within Pampanga. While he is for the furtherance of the development, he would want to keep our roads and pavements well-maintained for other motorists.

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Tolentino's proposal came after it was found out that the top of the lateral eastern portion of the monstrous lahar and flood control structure was damaged; blame it on the heavy load of trucks passing the megadike from quarrying sites.

During peak, the number of quarry trucks ranges from 300 to 500 a day traveling our roads. Imagine these gargantuan vehicles pounding our roads everyday, roads that are designed for lighter vehicles though. No wonder why we have potholes made everyday like the perennial rain. If we have roads for lighter vehicles, why can't we have roads for the heavier ones?

This is the idea of Tolentino. The megadike, which was transformed into a highway, is a great alternate route for vehicles from southern Pampanga to the north in Porac and Angeles City. Quarry trucks are banned to pass the said road as the latter was designed for mini-trucks and vehicles with lighter weights. Lately, the elevated highway was dumped with heaps of garbage and even human victims of summary executions. A number of informal settlers also abound on some portions of the dike.

Tolentino's idea is brilliant. Let a rocky road be constructed below and be made into an access road for quarry trucks passing previously passing through the megadike.

According to sources, truckers are amenable to pay for a minimal passway fee. It's another source of income for the province. But first, the provincial government needs to invest, in constructing an access road alongside the embankment of the dike. A return of investment is almost sure, brought about by the manifest willingness of quarry truckers to pay.

Another proposal in the offing is the installation of a weighing scale on the proposed access road. In this way, we can prevent overloaded trucks from passing our highways once found out to be above its intended capacity. Truckers have the option to have their load reduced or sorry.

I believe a tie-up with the management of the North Luzon Expressway is on its way as quarry trucks that already passed the weighing scale put up by the province need not pass the weighing scale installed at the NLEX, provided that they are issued stickers or any marks to attest that they have been already weighed.

The dike would then be reinforced by the proposed access road. Upgrading entails the dumping of filling materials and probably rip-rapping on its other side to avoid erosion.

If realized, truckers would be the guardians of the megadike, as no one would dare to dump mounds of trash if the area is populated with trucks passing the road parallel to the dike. Unscrupulous trash throwers would be discouraged to do their acts if the access road becomes busy 24 hours a day. More so, no one would want a witness to see a dead body thrown in the grassy portion of the dike.

Truckers would be guarding the megadike too, against informal settlers who are like mushrooms sprouting anywhere. They might as well be deputized by the provincial government on illegal squatting.

The idea is a win-win solution for the government, for the stakeholders, for motorists as well as for the dike. If the proposal be pushed through, it means an additional income for Pampanga and an ease to our roads and motorists as well. Tolentino's vision of a systematized quarry industry is laudable. As a former DPWH man, he is well adept with the qualities and fate of our roads. He is likewise for extra revenues for the government, as passway fees, in their minimal amounts would earn the province some funds for road constructions and maintenance.

Salute is given to him for his pro-development and pro-welfare stance that will eventually redound to people's welfare. I am buying Bay's ideas, I hope his colleagues in the Provincial Board would buy his ideas too.