Aging LRT-1 to get boost as LRMC, DOST-MIRDC ink knowledge-sharing pact

Published April 23, 2021, 1:33 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The 37-year-old Light Rail Transit (LRT) is expected to get a major boost from the Light Rail Manila Corporation’s (LRMC) partnership with the Department of Science and Technology-Metals Industry Research and Development Center (DOST-MIRDC).

In a virtual ceremony on Wednesday, April 21, the LRMC and DOST-MIRDC signed a memorandum of agreement to perform specific functions to achieve the common goal of sustaining the improvements with the aging train line.

The LRMC, which is the current private operator of LRT-1, is seeking the expertise of the DOST-MIRDC in conducting structural repairs of specific light rail vehicles (LRVs), as well as the local re-engineering and/or fabrication of spare parts that are already obsolete and/or difficult to source.

LRMC Chief Operating Officer Enrico R. Benipayo is optimistic that the wide range of capabilities of the DOST-MIRDC will further help them in improving LRT-1’s service.

The MIRDC, an attached agency of the DOST, is tasked to foster the advancement of metals, engineering, and allied industries in the Philippines.

“LRT-1 is a valuable mode of transportation for Filipinos in Metro Manila. We believe that with the expertise of our partners at DOST-MIRDC, we can continue enhancing the LRT-1 system to achieve our vision of becoming the commuter’s choice in transportation,” Benipayo said in a statement.

According to Benipayo, LRMC’s partnership with DOST-MIRDC will bring to the company a “new level” of understanding in terms of various diagnostics equipment and technology that are not normally acquired by railway operators.

“It will provide the advantage of having an extended railway laboratory similar to other countries,” the LRMC official said.

For the part of the DOST-MIRDC, Executive Director Robert O. Dizon vowed to improve the rail system and make everything efficient and convenient, especially for the riding public.

“We appreciate the LRMC for trusting and believing in the capabilities and expertise of the DOST-MIRDC. We are proud to be part of the LRMC’s initiative to make public transportation more efficient,” Dizon said.

“An improved rail system will not only benefit the commuting public; it will open doors of opportunities for various industries. This partnership is also a practical way for us to bring the benefits of science, technology, and innovation to the local metals, engineering, and allied industries,” he added.