San Miguel Corp. said Wednesday it is open to a revision of the design of the Metro Rail Transit Line 7 station in Quezon Memorial Circle following the suspension order issued by Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte.
The private proponent also expressed optimism the Transportation Department and the Quezon City government would soon resolve the design issue.
Belmonte ordered the suspension of construction of the QMC station on Tuesday, saying it would “affect the landmark’s identity as a national heritage park.”
She also called for a “win-win” solution to protect open spaces and advance the welfare of commuters.
San Miguel assured it would cooperate with stakeholders to deliver the project with minimal delays, even with a possible redesign of the station’s above-ground structure which would be finalized with the DOTR.
“The resolution of issues is really up to DOTR as main proponent, and the LGU. For us, while the order is a setback, we will do everything we can to make sure we keep to the timetable, and at the same time take into account the mayor’s concerns. This includes revisions to the design,” said SMC president Ramon Ang.
Ang said most of the works at the Quezon Circle were underground and that no major above-ground structure was built yet.
He said the design of the above-ground station was still being finalized with DOTR. The QC LGU expressed concerns over the original design, which was approved by the previous local administration.
The MRT7 project, classified as a national infrastructure project, suffered several delays from the time of the signing of the concession agreement in 2008. When SMC finally took over the project in 2016, construction officially began with a groundbreaking ceremony at the Quezon Memorial Circle.
It was further delayed by right-of-way issues. As of February 2020, the entire project was over 50-percent complete.
MRT7 is composed of 14 stations and aims to cut travel time from North Avenue in Quezon City to San Jose del Monte, Bulacan to 35 minutes. It is seen to serve 850,000 commuters daily once it becomes operational.