• JICA proposes Mega Manila transport, ‘dream plan’

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    The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on Friday unveiled a “dream plan” that aims to improve the transport system of Mega Manila, which covers Metro Manila, Region 3 (Central Luzon) and Region 4A (Calabarzon).

    JICA Project Manager Shizuo Iwata told the Philippine Energy and Infrastructure Seminar the proposed plan has five main components: urban roads (or the missing links of Circumferential Road 3, C5, bridges and others,137-kilometer new roads, flyovers, sidewalks, pedestrians, among others); expressways (426-kilometer intercity expressway and 78-kilometer urban expressway); urban and suburban railways (six 246-kilometer main lines, five 72-kilometer secondary lines and other integrated and improved lines); improved management of public buses and jeepneys; and improved traffic management.

    Iwata said that toward 2030, the Philippines should be able to fund the components of the project, which will cost P2.3 trillion.

    At constant prices, the gross domestic product of the Philippines is expected to average 6 percent in 2014 to 2016, 7.5 percent in 2017 to 2022 and 5 percent in 2023 to 2030, which can help sustain higher infrastructure spending toward 2030.

    Iwata said the dream plan is an “ideal concept” for the mass transport system of the country, which “the government can afford to fund.”

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