• DOTC to start tests on MRT-3 prototype train in Sept

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    RELIEF is finally in sight for thousands of weary commuters of the ailing Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT-3) system.

    The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said the prototype train car for the MRT-3 is set to arrive next month, after which will conduct static testing on the train in September and dynamic testing in November.

    The DOTC’s project implementation team is currently in Dalian, China to make final checks on the prototype before it is cleared for shipment to Manila on July 29.

    “This brings us another step closer to upgrading and modernizing the MRT-3 and improving our services to the public,” DOTC Secretary Emilio Joseph Abaya said.

    “After the prototype’s arrival in the middle of next month, it will be assembled by the manufacturer’s personnel and we will start static testing by September,” he added.

    The project implementation team is currently going through a checklist with Dalian Locomotive to ensure that the prototype train is compliant with the technical components and specifications of the train coaches.

    During their last visit in June, the team approved Dalian Locomotive’s choice of better traction motors which incorporate alternating current (AC) technology for the 48 brand-new train cars that will be delivered to Manila starting in the first quarter of 2016.

    The prototype is expected to arrive at the Port of Manila within the week of August 10-14. After assembly and static testing of the unit’s components such as the doors, seats, poles, and hand straps, dynamic testing will be conducted in mid-November.

    The DOTC is also acquiring 30 four-car trains or 120 coaches for Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 1 as part of the Cavite Extension Project, which will extend the current line from Baclaran to Niog in Bacoor, Cavite. The project will be tendered later this year.

    Meanwhile, with the successful pilot test of the new tap-and-go ticketing system at the Legarda station of the LRT-2 system earlier this week, the DOTC and the Light Rail Transit Authority are set to conduct trial runs of the smart card-based scheme at the Betty Go Belmonte station starting today.

    The unified contactless ticketing system will be activated at the nine remaining stations over the next two weeks before it is implemented on the LRT-1 and MRT-3.

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