The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has marked five of the 17 stations of the P255-billion Manila-Clark Railway Project, which will connect Manila to Central Luzon, Malacañang announced on Monday.
“Today, while the country is on a holiday [to observe Eid’l Fitr], the government–through the Department of Transportation–is still work-work-work in its Build-Build-Build infrastructure program,” Palace spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a statement.
The 106-kilometer railway project that will run from Tutuban, Manila to Clark, Pampanga is among the proposed projects of the Duterte administration under the “Build Build Build” infrastructure program.
Abella said the five of the 17 stations that the Tranportation department marked in the ceremony include Marilao and Meycauayan in Bulacan and Valenzuela City, Caloocan City and Tutuban (Manila) in Metro Manila.
Apart from the marked stations, the 12 other stations are Solis, Bocaue, Balagtas, Guiguinto, Malolos, Calumpit, Apalit, San Fernando, Angeles, Clark, Clark International Airport and the proposed New Clark City in Pampanga.
Abella said the rail project, which has 17 stations, aims to cut down the two-hour travel time from Manila to Clark to just 55 minutes.
“It will start construction in the last quarter of 2017 and with the completion of the project expected by the last quarter of 2021,” Abella said.
The rail system is expected to benefit 350,000 passengers daily on its first year of operations, he added.
The P255-billion project will be funded through the official development assistance from Japan.
The whole line will have 13 train sets with eight cars or coaches per train set.
Each train can reach a maximum speed of 120 kilometers per hour. CATHERINE S. VALENTE