The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to provide a loan of $123m to support the construction of elevated walkways at Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) in Manila, the Philippines.

According to ADB’s 2019 Asian Development Outlook, Metro Manila is the most congested city in Asia in terms of population, land area, and length of road networks.

ADB’s loan for the EDSA Greenways Project will help the government construct 5km of safe, wide, well-lit, disaster-resilient and covered elevated walkways.

The walkways will be linked to mass transit stations along EDSA, including the Balintawak, Cubao, Guadalupe, and Taft stations.

The 5m-wide elevated structures will feature elevators and monitoring systems and will be designed to provide easy access for pedestrians, including the elderly, pregnant women, young children, and people with disabilities.

ADB Southeast Asia Transport and Communications director Hiroaki Yamaguchi said: “The EDSA Greenways Project is an integral part of the government’s transport strategy to make Metro Manila a better place to live, work, and visit.

“This project is an important part of our contribution to helping make that vision a reality for Filipinos.”

The project is reported to be part of the government’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ infrastructure development programme.

In addition, the project is expected to create new employment opportunities in the region while supporting Metro Manila’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Approximately PHP3bn ($61m) will be spent on procuring local raw materials for this project.

Civil work contracts for the project are expected to be announced in the first half of next year.

Upon completion, the EDSA Greenways Project, along with the existing walkways, are expected to help minimise traffic disruptions in the region.

Using funds from ADB’s Infrastructure Preparation and Innovation Facility, an international consulting firm has also been appointed to conduct a feasibility study along with the Department of Transportation.

In addition, the project will receive funding of $15m from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Catalytic Green Finance Facility, which will be administered by ADB.