By EMMIE V. ABADILLA
The National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CabCom) has approved the ₱59.3-billion Metro Rail Transit Line 4 (MRT-4) during its December 20, 2019 meeting.
The project proponent, the Department of Transportation ( DOTr), yesterday announced the’ go-ahead for the 15.56-kilometer rail-based transit system linking parts of eastern Metro Manila and the province of Rizal.
The MRT-4, scheduled for operation in 2025, will have an initial daily ridership of 234,433 passengers.
The line system will serve 11 stations, addressing the worsening traffic condition and inadequate road capacities in the densely-populated areas of eastern Metro Manila to include parts of Quezon City, San Juan City, Mandaluyong City, Pasig City and the Ortigas Center.
The line will also link eastern Metro Manila with the neighboring municipalities of Cainta and Taytay in Rizal.
MRT-4’s construction is slated from 2021-2025. An official development assistance (ODA) from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) will fund the project.
Once operational, MRT 4 will greatly help connect eastern Metro Manila with the province of Rizal, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade reiterated.
“Considering how densely-populated these areas are, which is made more difficult with the lack of road capacities and ever worsening traffic conditions, MRT-4 will be of great help in moving commuters between eastern Metro Manila and Rizal,” he pointed out.
The ICC-CabCom approval of the MRT-4 project and other key transport and infrastructure projects will assure their completion within the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, noted Infrastructure Cluster Chairman and Department of Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar.
“After passing the ICC-CabCom, we’ll be able to release the projects by early next year, allowing us time to complete these game-changing projects,” he elaborated.
“It’s crucial that we start these projects — we’ll be working on the procurement, that’s why we fast-tracked all these projects before the end of 2019 so that next year, we can focus purely on their detailed engineering and procurement,” Secretary Villar clarified further.
Meanwhile, the ICC-CabCom, in the same meeting, also approved the Unsolicited Operate-Add-Transfer (OAT) Proposal for the Davao International Airport, the Unsolicited Operate-Add-Transfer (OAT) Proposal for the Laguindingan Airport, the EDSA Greenways Project and the Maritime Safety Enhancement Program (MSEP).