North-South Commuter Rail opens partially in 3Q 2026

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North-South Commuter Rail opens partially in 3Q 2026
The entire North-South Commuter Railway Project will have a total of 35 stations along its rail line to be served by 51 commuter and seven express train sets. Photo screengrab from Sumitomo Construction video.
  • Partial operation of the 147-km North-South Commuter Railway Project will begin in the third quarter of 2026 while full operation will start in 2029, the Department of Transportation says
  • The partial operation will start on the Malolos-Clark section of the project
  • The P110.4-billion Contract Package NS-01 was signed by DOTr and Mitsubishi Corp., winner of the electromechanical system for the Malolos-Clark and Blumentritt-Calamba NSCR sections

The 147-kilometer North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) Project will open partially in 3Q26, while full operation will start in 2029, Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista said.

The partial operation will include the Malolos, Bulacan-Clark, Pampanga section of the project, Bautista said during the contract signing for NSCR’s Contract package (CP) NS-01 on March 3.

“We expect partial operation of the Malolos to Clark Airport section by the third quarter of 2026,” Bautista said, adding that “three years more, we should see full operation of the whole NSCR.”

The P110.4 billion worth CP NS-01 was signed by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Mitsubishi Corp., which won the contract to build the electromechanical system for the Malolos-Clark and Blumentritt-Calamba sections of the NSCR.

The contract covers the trackworks, signaling system, and telecommunications for the mainline and depots and includes the power supply at the substations, power distribution system, and overhead contact line system for the mainline and depots, among other things.

The entire NSCR Project will have a total of 35 stations along its rail line to be served by 51 commuter and seven express train sets.

The project is aimed to provide ease of mobility and connectivity within the National Capital Region, CALABARZON and Central Luzon, and is also expected to generate a total of 110,000 direct and indirect employment during its construction phase, Bautista said.

NSCR is funded by an official development assistance loan from Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Asian Development Bank.

Once operational, the NSCR is expected to service as many as 800,000 passengers daily and cut travel time from Clark International Airport in Pampanga to Calamba, Laguna to less than two hours.