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DOTR signs P3.1-b deal to run Mindanao Railway

The Department of Transportation on Wednesday signed a P3.08-billion management consultancy contract with China Railway Design Corp. on the Mindanao Railway Project Phase 1.

“I am happy today that we signed the agreement of project management consultancy with China Railway Design Corp. I will be much happier in March 2022, when we see the actual partial operations of Tagum-Davao-Digos Mindanao Railway Project,” Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said during the virtual signing ceremony.

Eymard Eje, Transportation assistant secretary for project implementation-Mindanao Cluster, said the agency was ready to start operating the railway in Mindanao.

Eje said the 100-kilometer Mindanao Railway Project: Tagum-Davao-Digos was expected to start partial operations by March 2022.

The P82-billion Mindanao Railway Project: Tagum-Davao-Digos segment is expected to reduce travel time from Tagum City, Davao del Norte to Digos City, Davao del Sur from 3.5 hours to 1.3 hours once it starts operations by 2022.

The MRP-TDD segment is the first of the three segments of the Mindanao Railway Project.

The MRP-TDD is expected to not only make travel faster, but also provide safer, more convenient and comfortable travel for passengers in the corridor. It will have eight stations at Tagum, Carmen, Panabo, Mudiang, Davao Terminal, Toril, Sta. Cruz and Digos. A 10-hectare depot will be built in Tagum.

The rail line will be built with a single track, with provisions for future tracks and electrification. It will have six five-car passenger trains (diesel multiple units) with three spare cars, four locomotives and 15 freight cars.

Upon project completion, daily ridership in the Tagum-Davao-Digos segment was expected to reach 134,060 by 2022.

The agency expects the daily ridership to further increase to 237,023 by 2032 and 375,134 by 2042.

The Mindanao Railway is funded by an official development assistance from China. The MRP was conceived in 1950, when there was no completed feasibility study, nor NEDA approval, contract and investment in 2016. It is only during the Duterte administration that the project was approved by NEDA.

The transformational rail infrastructure is expected to improve inter-island connectivity, spur livelihood and business opportunities and provide socio-economic benefits to Filipinos in the region.

The government is also expanding the rail projects in Luzon through the North–South Commuter Railway which will stretch hundreds of kilometers across different provinces.

Topics: Department of Transportation , DOTR , China Railway Design Corp. , Mindanao Railway Project Phase 1
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