In a virtual conference, the Department of Transportation has revealed that it will be spending USD 5.8 million for railway projects in 2022. The government awarded 32 railway contacts by the end of 2020 and is expected to award a total of 65 contracts by with some projects still under construction and some fully implemented and operating by end of 2022.
The railway is one of the most integral units under the massive PHP 8 trillion (USD 165.2 billion) “Build, Build, Build program” launched in 2016, which was allocated with 21.7% of the total budget, 42% to other transportation projects, 13% for social infrastructure projects, 12% for water projects; and power and information technology for the remaining allocation.
The Philippines had 77 kilometers of railway routes, 61 stations and 224 coaches operating in 2016, and this is expected to increase to 1200 km, 168 stations and 1381 coaches in 2022.
The following are the main DOTr projects currently being constructed:
- LRT-1 Cavite Extension involves adding 8 stations — Redemptorist; MIA; Asia World; Ninoy Aquino; Dr. Santos; Las Piñas; Zapote; and Niog Street in Bacoor City, Cavite province — from Baclaran Station in Parañaque City. Once built, the project will raise the LRT-1’s passenger capacity from 500,000 to 800,000 and cut travel time from Baclaran to Bacoor from 1 to 2 hours to 25 minutes.
- LRT-2 East Extension seeks to extend the line to 4 km from Santolan Station in Pasig City with the addition of two stations: Emerald, which would rise in the vicinity of three shopping malls; and Masinag in Antipolo City, Rizal province. Once completed, it is expected to add 80,000 passengers to its capacity and reduce travel time between C.M. Recto Avenue and Masinag Junction to 40 minutes.
- The 15.56-km MRT-4, approved in December 2019, is a rail-based transit system that will have 11 stations. Initially targeted for completion in 2025, this system is seen to benefit commuters in the cities of Mandaluyong, Pasig, Quezon, and San Juan, as well as the towns of Cainta and Taytay in Rizal.
- The Metro Manila Subway is envisioned to have 15 stations between Quirino Highway in Quezon City and FTI (Food Terminal Inc.) in Taguig City and a 36-km line. It was expected to be partially open next year and fully operational by 2026.
- The 148-km North-South Commuter Railway will have 36 stations between New Clark City in Capas town, Tarlac province, and Calamba City in Laguna province. It is divided into three phases: North Phase 1, which runs from Manila’s historic Tutuban Station to Malolos, Bulacan province; North Phase 2, from Malolos to Clark International Airport in Pampanga province; and South Phase, from Tutuban to Calamba. Its construction is projected to last this decade.
These projects are being funded by a combination of official development assistance (ODA) from China, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA); public-private partnerships; and the national budget. ODA forms 91 percent of all the total funding.
The DOTr furthered that the capital expenditure for 11 railway projects would reach PhP 741 billion (USD 15.28 billion) in 2025 which includes the rehabilitation of MRT-Line 3, Common Station, Subic-Clark Railway, PNR South Long Haul Project, and the Mindanao Railway Project.
(Source: The Manila Times)