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NEDA Approves new Subway and Trains

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The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) green-lighted three mass-railway projects for development last Tuesday, September 12, 2017. These are:

  • Metro Manila’s first Subway: The PhP 385.25 billion (US$7 billion) Subway project will run from Mindanao Avenue in Quezon City to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) complex in Paranaque. Funding for the subway project will be provided by an Official Development Assistance Agreement (ODA) between the current administration and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Construction on the subway will begin in 2018 and Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade hopes that the subway will be partially open by 2022. The subway will be built to the same world-class specifications as the subways in Tokyo, complete with flood prevention and earthquake detection.

  • The Philippine National Railways (PNR) – South Commuter line. The PhP 134 B (US$ 2.6 Billion) railway project will also be funded by the ODA with JICA. Secretary Tugade envisions the project to create a dual-track electrified railway with elevated, at-grade and depressed section – much like the EDSA MRT – that will run from Tutuban in Manila to Los Banos, Laguna. The 72 kilometer railway is expected to service over 300,000 commuters daily and to cut the commute time between Laguna and Manila to 1 hour.

  • The last approved project is the extension of the PNR South Long Haul Line. The PhP 151 B (US$ 2.9 Billion) railway will be funded by an ODA from China. The project involves the rebuilding of the existing single-track railway of the PNR and will eventually connect Tutuban, Manila to Legazpi (Bicol), Matnog (Sorsogon) and Batangas. The PNR South Long Haul Line is envisioned to connect the major Southern provinces to international seaports and economic zones.

The DOTr said that the projects are all a part of the Mega Manila Dream Plan – a transport network roadmap created by the JICA that is aimed at increasing sustainable development in the island of Luzon.