Site clearing works for Metro Manila subway start
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) on Saturday announced the construction of the country's first-ever underground railway system.
The DOTr, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Shimizu-Fujitaka-Takenaka-EEI Consortium formalized the inauguration of the site clearing works ahead of the Partial Operability (PO) phase of the Metro Manila Subway Project (MMSP) during a ceremony in Valuenzuela City.
Before the partial operability of the 36-kilometer underground subway in 2021, among the establishments that are lined up for construction starting this year are: the first two stations in Valenzuela and Quezon City, the subway depot in Valenzuela, and the Philippine Railway Institute (PRI) - the first railway training center in the country.
The contract signing and groundbreaking ceremony of the Filipino-Japanese joint venture was done last February in Barangay Ugong.
In November, the detailed engineering design for the project, the disbursement from JICA under the Japan's Official Development Assistance to the Philippines was completed.
According to DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan, tree cutting permits were also released by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
In addition, about 60 percent of the lots required for the projects have already been secured and acquired by the DOTr. Meanwhile, more than a hundred of illegal settlers were also relocated.
Six tunnel boring were also ordered by the consortium from the JIM Tech Corp. - Japan's largest tunnel boring machine manufacturer. Shimizu Corp.'s Director Monichiro Tsuchiya added that spare parts are also set to be delivered in the following months.
The subway is set to run at up to 80 kilometers per hour in 15 stations from Quezon City to Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 for just 36 minutes. It will serve at least 370,000 passengers daily during its first year of full operations.
The project is also expected to withstand disasters such as earthquakes and typhoons as it adapts the Japan's technological advancements and expertise in railway system.
The Metro Manila Subway Project is under the Duterte administration's "Build, Build, Build" project.
Also present during the ceremony were the local governments of Valenzuela and Quezon City, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), and Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). Cristina Eloisa Baclig/DMS