Two years after taking over the management responsibilities of Puerto Rico’s highways PR-22 and PR-5 from the government, private operator metropistas has already invested $30 million in improvements, company officials said Wednesday.
The amount represents 40 percent of the $80 million the company plans to invest as part of its capital improvement program for the first five years of operations.
“This initial investment has focused mostly on projects aimed at improving safety on the roads, from lighting to signage and fencing replacement. Next year we will embark on fully repaving roads and repairing bridges, all with the goal of offering our customers a world class experience as we pledged to do,” Gonzalo Alcalde, CEO of metropistas told the Joint Commission on Public-Private Partnerships of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives.
In addition to the amount already invested in capital improvement projects, metropistas has invested more than $20 million in other safety-related projects and initiatives, such as the patrol service and free 24/7 highway assistance on, the new Traffic Control Center in Buchanan and the purchase of 13 patrol vehicles assigned to the Puerto Rico Police for patrolling and monitoring of these highways. So far, some 30,000 drivers have benefited from the latter service.
The investment metropistas has been undertaken in these projects is in addition to the more than $1.1 million the company paid to the Highway Authority when selected to manage PR-22 and PR-5.
Finally, metropistas also offered details of the Dynamic Toll Lane that went into effect Aug. 15, which has already been used by about 150,000 drivers traveling on PR-22 during peak traffic hours.