By Franco Regala
CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will co-finance for the construction of the Malolos-Clark rail project, Transportation Undersecretary for Railways Timothy Batan said Friday.
Batan said that the 69.5-kilometer rail project will connect Malolos to Clark International Airport segment of the Philippine National Railways (PNR) North Phase 2 project.
“ADB will provide financing for the civil works of the structure of the elevated two-way railtracks. It will be built along the old routes of PNR,” Batan said.
JICA, on the other hand, is completing the detailed engineering design for the P211.5 billion project. It also conducted a series of public hearings regarding the PNR North Phase 2 project.
According to the official, PNR North 2 will be an electrified, fully elevated, and a standard-gauge railway.It is designed to ensure seamless interoperability for the entire Philippine railways system.
“We have coordinated with National Housing Authority on the relocation of about 1,000 families along the route. It includes all illegal structures in Malolos and Calumpit in Bulacan, as well as Apalit, San Simon, Santo Tomas, San Fernando and Angeles in Pampanga,” he said.
Phase 2 will complement the PNR North Phase 1 which runs from Tutuban in Manila to Malolos City.