Work seeks to rid accident-prone intersection of hazards


A short ceremony precedes the groundbreaking for the hazard elimination project at the intersection of Chalan Monsignor Guerrero Road and Chalan Tun Antonio Apa Road near the Northern Marianas College on As Terlaje Hill. (OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR)

A project to eliminate hazards at the accident-prone intersection of Chalan Monsignor Guerrero Road and Chalan Tun Antonio Apa Road near the Northern Marianas College on As Terlaje Hill started yesterday, with the Department of Public Works breaking ground at the site.

The hazard elimination project worth $567,558 is funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration-HI Division, according DPW Secretary James A. Ada. Under the project, one of the span wire traffic signal pole will be replaced with mast arm traffic signal pole and a guardrail will be installed. The intersection will also have an anti-skid surface.

Ada said the project’s contractor, Hong Ye Rental and Construction Ltd., has 180 calendar days, or until Sept. 16, 2022, to finish the project.

Ada thanked Hong Ye for bidding on the project, and to all DPW engineers and staff.

“So many accidents have happened over here,” he said.

Ada also disclosed many road projects that will be rolling out, including one at the Industrial Drive by the Inos Peace Park in Puerto Rico worth $1.3 million.

He thanked Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (D-MP) for those monies appropriated for these many projects.

DPW highway administrator Lorraine S. Villagomez said that Gov. Ralph DLG Torres, Lt. Gov. Arnold I. Palacios, Sablan, and Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang, who were not present at the ceremony, played roles in this hazard mitigation project.

House Speaker Edmund S. Villagomez (Ind-Saipan), who also spoke at the groundbreaking ceremony, said he never gets tired being invited to groundbreaking projects, especially when it comes to roads. He said it is for the safety of motorists and also for the students, staff, and faculty of NMC as the project is near the campus.

“I’m very excited for this project and all the projects that are coming up,” he said.

The speaker said he hopes to see more projects as well in Precinct 3, which he represents.

“I know that’s coming forward,” said Villagomez as he thanked the administration, DPW, federal partners, and all those involved in this project.

NMC president Dr. Galvin Deleon Guerrero said the project is just one of many examples of DPW’s partnership with NMC.

Deleon Guerrero said it’s the partnership that they cherish and that they look forward to many more partnerships and projects in the future.

The NMC president said whenever they’re on campus for an event like this groundbreaking, it’s hard not to remember what it was like not too long ago when then-interim NMC president Frankie Eliptico and the NMC board of regents led by chairman Charles Cepeda were at the campus at this very site, devastated by Super Typhoon Yutu.

“It’s a new day at NMC, because now we have buildings, projects in the works, and this may be the very first groundbreaking as we move forward with our new facilities,” Deleon Guerrero said.

He said Ada and the Office of the Governor deserve a big round of applause for helping to make this project possible.

“This is your campus. This is not just the NMC campus. This is your campus,” Deleon Guerrero said.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at
Disclaimer: Comments are moderated. They will not appear immediately or even on the same day. Comments should be related to the topic. Off-topic comments would be deleted. Profanities are not allowed. Comments that are potentially libelous, inflammatory, or slanderous would be deleted.