NEDA jacks up Clark-Laguna railway cost to over P700B
The budget for Luzon’s railway system nearly doubled.
The Investment Coordination Committee of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) system will now cost P777.55 billion, nearly double the initial estimate of P440.88 billion.
In a statement, NEDA said the committee approved the higher budget during its Nov. 6 meeting, which will cover three major changes in the detailed engineering designs for the train system of the Philippine National Railways.
The increased budget will provide for the shift to elevated viaducts instead of at-grade structures to improve operational efficiencies and safety, the adoption of standard gauge instead of narrow-gauge tracks, the increase in the number of trains and the change from single to double-tracks for the Malolos-Cark Railway Project.
The amount also covers the resettlement of 12,901 families.
Also covered by the commuter rail project are the phase 1 (Malolos-Tutuban), the PNR South Commuter Railway (Solis-Calamba), and the Malolos-Clark Railway Project spanning 36 stations.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Asian Development Bank will fund the construction via official development assistance. Full operations are targeted by 2023.