LRT 1 tracks to be replaced starting Dec. 5, LRTA says

THE tracks of Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 1, Southeast Asia’s first overhead railway system, will be replaced starting December 5.

Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) Spokesman Hernando T. Cabrera said the replacement of the rails of the LRT Line 1 is part of the government’s thrust to improve the quality of transportation in the country.

“For LRT Line 1, the delivery of parts is slated in two months’ time, so that’s by end-October. We will start replacing the rails by December 5,” he told the BusinessMirror in a phone interview.

The P270-million project is expected to be completed in two years.

“We will replace roughly 17 kilometers of the rails in the southbound lane,” Cabrera added.

The line consists of 20 stations from Baclaran to Monumento, and runs on 20.7 km of fully elevated tracks. More than 500,000 commuters use the rail system referred to as the yellow line daily.

The government plans to expand the railway system by adding additional stations to Cavite through a P65-billion public-private partnership project.

But the awarding of the project to its winning bidder—the tandem of Metro Pacific Investments Corp. and Ayala Corp.—has been stalled by a legal impediment. Included in the contract is the design component of the P1.4-billion Common Station Project, a venture that is being questioned by a property developer before the Supreme Court.

The high tribunal decided to impose a stay order on the common hub, subsequently barring the transport agency from awarding the P65-billion Cavite Extension deal to the lone bidder.

The multibillion-peso railway-expansion project aims to extend the existing Line 1 by 11.7 km, adding eight new stations, where approximately 10.5 km of the extension will be elevated and 1.2 km will be at-grade. The winning bidder will also serve as the operator and the maintenance provider of the railway line.

Lorenz S. Marasigan

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