One glaring aspect of mass transportation in the Philippines that continues to hurt the economy and congest the road inside and the ones leading to and from the metropolis is the lack of an efficient train system.
As countries in the region have vastly improved their rail transport system, we have been left to settle on a disabled LRT and MRT system that is updating its equipment only now, 20 years too late.
But as the saying goes, better late than never.
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is looking into the revival of the country’s rail transport plan to complement the existing LRT and MRT system to improve the mass transportation system and reduce the number of vehicles on the road.
Included in the plan are the LRT1 Cavite Extension, LRT2 operations and maintenance (O&M), LRT Line 4, LRT Line 6, Metro Rail Transit (MRT) Line 7, the extension of the Philippine National Railways (PNR) to Clark, Pampanga and to Los Baños, Laguna and the Mass Transit System Loop (MTSL) or LRT Transit Line 5.
The MTSL is the Php 374.5 billion subway project that aims to connect the Makati Central Business District to the Mall of Asia in Pasay City and Bonifacio Global City in Taguig.
“It is high time that we have a subway system as this will provide convenience to commuters who are always stuck in heavy traffic,” said Marikina Rep. Bayani Fernando, Transportation Committee Chair of the House of Representatives.
The subway system was lined up during the Aquino administration but was put in the backburner as scheduling constraints and negotiations took up too much time that could be used for other pressing matters.
After declaring traffic to be a metro-wide crisis, the Duterte admin revisited the plan, highlighting the need for a subway system to ease the traffic congestion.