P85B Malolos-Clark railway construction contracts signed

Malolos-Clark Railway Project photo from Asian Development Bank
Malolos-Clark Railway Project artist rendition from Asian Development Bank

Three contract packages that will complete the second phase of the Philippine National Railways (PNR) Clark project were signed on October 8, according to the Department of Transportation (DOTr).

Packages N-01, N-02, and N-03 are worth almost P85 billion and round up the five civil works packages needed to complete the Malolos-Clark Railway Project (MCRP), DOTr said in a statement.

MCRP forms part of the mega rail network North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) System Project.

The virtual signing for the three contract packages came after the Notice of Awards were issued to the winning bidders last September 18.

“We are starting construction by November [or] December this year with the mobilization of our three contractors,” DOTr undersecretary for railways Timothy John Batan said. The project is scheduled to be partially operable in 2023 and fully completed by 2025.

Contract package N-01 worth P28.4 billion was signed with the joint venture (JV) of Megawide Construction Corp., Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. (Hyundai E&C), and Dong-ah Geological Engineering Co. Ltd.

Megawide in a separate statement said their JV will undertake MCRP Package 1, which includes building and civil engineering works for approximately 17 kilometers (km) of viaduct structure, including elevated station buildings in Calumpit, Bulacan and Apalit, Pampanga.

This project marks Megawide’s foray into horizontal infrastructure, according to Megawide chairman and chief executive officer Edgar Saavedra.

The P33.7 billion contract package N-02 was signed with the tandem of Acciona Construction Philippines and Daelim Industrial Co. Ltd. It covers 16 km of elevated viaduct and one station building in the towns of Minalin, Sto. Tomas, and San Fernando in Pampanga.

Contract Package N-03 worth P22.8 billion, meanwhile, was signed with Italian-Thai Development Public Co. Ltd, which will construct 12 km of elevated viaduct and two station buildings in the towns of San Fernando, Angeles, and Mabalacat in Pampanga.

DOTr already signed contract packages N-04 and N-05 worth around P38 billion last August. N-04 covers civil engineering and building works for about 6.3 km of the main line and 1.6 km of the depot’s access line, with an underground station serving Clark International Airport (CRK).

READ: Construction of Malolos–Clark railway project to start soon

Contract package N-05, meanwhile, covers civil engineering and building works for the Clark Railway Depot.

PNR Clark Phase 2 is the 54-km northern segment of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) System Project and will stretch from Malolos, Bulacan to Clark, Pampanga.

The MCRP will feature the country’s first Airport Express Service, which will reduce travel time between CRK in Pampanga and Makati City from more than two hours by car, to just one hour via the Airport Express.

Once MCRP is partially operable, travel time will be trimmed down to just 30 to 35 minutes from the original one hour and 30 minutes. DOTr said PNR Clark Phase 2 is now 27.07% completed.

Another NSCR segment, PNR Clark Phase 1 (Tutuban-Malolos), is a 38 km rail line that will connect Tutuban, Manila to Malolos, Bulacan, reducing travel time from approximately one hour and 30 minutes to just 35 minutes. The segment, which now stands at 40.48% complete, is targeted to be partially operable by December 2021.

The other segment is the PNR Calamba (Solis-Calamba), which is a 56 km leg that will run from Solis, Manila to Calamba, Laguna. Once partially operable by 2024, travel time will be shortened to one hour from three hours. The segment now stands at 20.42% progress rate, with right-of-way acquisition and procurement for civil works packages currently ongoing.

NSCR is a mega railway network with a 148-km route length, 37 stations and 464 train cars. The project is co-financed by the Asian Development Bank and Japan International Cooperation Agency.