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Gov’t eyes further extension of LRT 1

Plans are being drawn up to extend the Light Rail Transit (LRT) line further south until Dasmariñas, Cavite, as the government tries to keep up with mass transit requirements in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

Transportation Secretary Mar Roxas II said a feasibility study on the project was set to be started this year to see whether it would make sense to have another station in Dasmariñas instead of ending the LRT line in Imus, Cavite.

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“There are a lot of people that go all the way to Dasmariñas, so that’s being studied,” he said.

He said plans for Dasmariñas would not interfere with the current bidding for the LRT extension from Baclaran in Pasay, to Imus.

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The LRT line 1 extension project, which would cost P60 billion to be split between the government and the private sector, is the most expensive infrastructure project in the Aquino administration’s pipeline.

“We’re studying this (Dasmariñas extension) because we don’t want to waste time. If we approve the project, then we can easily add it on to the Imus extension,” Roxas said.

He said the government would not wait for the Imus extension to be completed before deciding on the Dasmariñas project. He said it would be harder to build all the way to Dasmariñas after the Imus extension has been completed.

Extending the 30-year-old LRT line 1, which runs all the way to Roosevelt, Quezon City, would benefit the millions of Cavite residents who commute to work around Metro Manila daily.

Another train project waiting government approval is the LRT line 2 East Extension from Sampaloc, Marikina, to Antipolo’s Masinag Junction. The project is awaiting the green light from the National Economic and Development Authority. All projects worth more than P500 million need approval from the Neda Board, which is led by the President.

Meanwhile, the DoTC last week announced the long-awaited approval of a new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system to solve Cebu’s transport problems.

The BRT system, the first of its kind in the Philippines, is patterned after the BRT system in Bogota in Colombia, Curitiba in Brazil, Seoul in South Korea and Guangzhou, China.

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The Cebu BRT is a transport system with around 176 buses that will run through dedicated and exclusive busways from Bulacao to Talamban in Cebu, with a link to Cebu’s South Road property.

It is expected to serve an estimated 330,000 passengers per day when it starts operations in 2015.

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TAGS: Government, LRT 1, LRT 1 extension, Philippines, rail transport
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