After DOTr forges consensus with stakeholders
AFTER a seven-year legal deadlock, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said on Tuesday that it has forged a consensus with stakeholders on a single location for the common station that will connect the LRT Line 1, MRT-3, and the proposed MRT-7.
The DOTr, Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA), SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SMPHI), Universal LRT Corp. (ULC) and Light Rail Manila Consortium (LRMC), North Triangle Depot Commercial Corporation represented by Ayala Land, Inc. (ALI), and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) are set to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today, September 28, to finalize the agreement.
The MOU will pave the way for the filing of a joint motion to the Supreme Court to lift the temporary restraining order on the construction of the common station for the three urban transit lines.
The common station, which will be built between SM North EDSA and Trinoma, with access to both malls and major roads such as EDSA, will provide a common concourse or atrium for train commuters to conveniently transfer from one line to another.
The DPWH also assured that the underpass being built will seamlessly integrate with the common station.
Getting all parties to agree was among the targets set by DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade within the first 100 days in office, and it involved engaging all stakeholders in meetings in order to reach a consensus.
In a meeting earlier this month, the country’s top executives–SM’s Tessie Sy Coson and Hans Sy, Ayala’s Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, San Miguel’s Ramon Ang, and Metro Pacific’s Manny Pangilinan–agreed that a unified station was necessary to make commuting more convenient to the public.
The Common Station project started in 2009 and has been on hold due to legal issues.
The LRTA inked a deal with SMPHI to build the station near SM North EDSA. Five years later, the Department of
Transportation and Communications (DOTC) decided to build the station near Ayala’s Trinoma, citing lower costs as a reason for the change of location.
The Supreme Court intervened and issued a TRO in favor of SMPHI to stop the construction of the common station.