By Ariel Fernandez
The 15.56-kilometer rail-based transit system aimed to link parts of eastern Metro Manila and the province of Rizal moved closer to completion after it was approved by the Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CabCom) during its December 20, 2019 meeting.
Dubbed as the Metro Rail Transit Line 4 (MRT-4), the rail-based transit system which is scheduled for operation in 2025, aims to address 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.
With an initial daily ridership projected at 234,433 passengers, the line system will serve 11 stations.
The P59.3-billion MRT-4 project is calendared for construction from 2021-2025 to be funded by an official development assistance (ODA) from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) as proponent.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said the MRT-4 project, once operational, will greatly help to connect eastern Metro Manila with Rizal.
“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,” Secretary Tugade said.
Infrastructure Cluster Chairman and Department of Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar meanwhile said the approval by the ICC-CabCom of the MRT-4 project and other key transport and infrastructure projects, will assure their completion within the administration of President Duterte.
“After passing the ICC-CabCom, we’ll be able to release the projects by early next year, allowing us time within the Duterte administration to significantly complete these game-changing projects. 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 the year so that next year, we can focus purely on the detailed engineering and procurement of these big-ticket projects,” Secretary Villar said.