The private-sector consortium carrying out the project to extend the Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) to Cavite province south of Metro Manila has vowed to start pre-construction preparations by October 2018. It hopes to begin on-site construction works by early next year.
Rodrigo Bulario, operations director of Light Rail Manila Corp. (LRMC), said company’s subcontractors would start mobilizing in four months, according to a report in Inquirer.net on Monday, June 18.
The LRMC is a consortium of Ayala Corp., Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp. and Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings. The consortium won the bidding to undertake the public-private partnership (PPP) project at the cost of Php65 billion. LRT-1 is the country’s oldest elevated train system.
Officials of the company earlier announced that construction works would commence later this year after most of the segments of the right of way (ROW) needed by the project have been turned over by the government to LRMC.
“Actually we can start [construction preparation] by October kasi binigay na ‘yung right of way ng iba eh (because the right of way for other [segments needed by the project] have already been turned over,” Bulario was quoted by Inquirer.net as saying. “Mobilization is October then continuous na ‘yun until construction.”
In government infrastructure projects, ROW means the piece of property used or required for the project to start. The process of acquiring ROW is done before the mobilization phase, the time when the resources, manpower and plans needed before the actual construction are finalized.
The project, which is expected to be completed by 2021, is awaited by hundreds of thousands of people who commute daily from their homes in Cavite to factories, offices and schools in Metro Manila.
The Php64.9-billion project is expected to accommodate around 410,000 passengers every day in its opening year, with completion targeted at the last quarter of 2021.
LRMC President and CEO Juan Alfonso said the project may cut the travel time between Baclaran in Parañaque City to Bacoor in Cavite to only 30 minutes from the usual one and a half hour land travel during rush hour, according to report by GMA News Online.
“From Baclaran to Sucat, it will be only 15 minutes; Baclaran to Zapote, 20 minutes," Alfonso said, according to the report.
The latest announcement comes months after LRMC tapped French rail experts Bouygues Travaux Publics and Alstom Transport Private Ltd. to help in the construction of the LRT-1 extension project in February.
According to the Public-Private Partnership Center website, the LRT-1 Cavite extension involves the construction of an 11.7-kilometer railway, 10.5 km of which will be elevated. The existing Baclaran Station will be extended to Bacoor, Cavite with the last stop at Niyog Station. A total of eight stations will be added for the extension project starting from the Aseana business district in Pasay City.
Elyssa Christine Lopez is a staff writer of Entrepreneur.com.ph.