SMC installs batch2 MRT7 trains

Published October 25, 2021, 4:51 PM

by Emmie V. Abadilla


San Miguel Corporation (SMC) recently mounted two more brand new Hyundai Rotem train sets on its 22-kilometer, P68.2 Billion Metro Rail Transit Line 7 (MRT 7) and is on track to start operating next year.

This was the second batch of train sets, after the first arrived from Korea last month. SMC expects to receive and install 6 of the total 36 train sets before 2021 ends.

The entire MRT system will have a total of 108 cars. “Work continues non-stop on the MRT-7 project, so we can meet our target start of operations by end of 2022,” SMC president Ramon S. Ang announced Oct. 25, 21021.

“I’m glad to report we’re on track to meet all the key milestones we expect this year,” he confirmed.

Similar to the first two train sets that arrived last September, the latest deliveries were mounted on the MRT-7 tracks between University Avenue and Tandang Sora, over this weekend.

The mass transit system, fully funded by SMC as concessionaire, will serve thousands of commuters from North Avenue in Quezon City to San Jose del Monte in Bulacan.

“The process of unloading the trains from the ship, transporting them to the site, and placing them on the tracks is a meticulous process,” Ang noted.

“Safety of people and the trainsets are a priority. But I think we’ve gotten better at the process and look forward to more efficiently doing this as more trainsets arrive in the coming months,” he added.

Manufacturer Hyundai Rotem shipped the two trainsets from Korea’s Masan Port and they arrived in Manila Oct. 17.

“As work on the MRT-7 project progresses faster, we will be able to increase the number of train shipments from Korea in the coming months and mount these on the tracks later on for testing,” he elaborated.

“In the meantime, we regularly inspect the trains in storage and are taking all necessary measures to maintain all trainsets so they will be in tip-top shape once we are ready to test and operate.”

With project completion now at 56.03 percent, MRT-7 will start test runs by December, 2022.

Despite pandemic restrictions and pending right-of-way issues, the installation of bored piles, girders, and other foundational works are going smoothly.

On its first year of operation, the MRT-7 will accommodate 300,000 passengers per day with a maximum projection of 850,000 passengers per day on its 12th year of operation.

“Given the need for social distancing and limited capacity enforced in public transportation amid the constant threat of COVID-19, we don’t expect to achieve these numbers right away but rest assured, the trains will serve their purpose of bringing more people from Quezon City to Bulacan faster and safer post-pandemic,”Ang assured.