PNR eyes special train service to beat 'trafficgeddon'
MANILA – A special coach service is being planned by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Philippine National Railways (PNR) to provide an alternative to motorists as heavy traffic is expected due to road projects. [http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/video/nation/metro-manila/02/17/14/trafficgeddon-feared-skyway-3-project-starts]
DOTC said the train service can accommodate 120 people per trip and will feature air-conditioned train sets, reclining seats, and a lounge area.
The special fare will range from P60 to P90 and is scheduled to be launched on March 3.
“This is one of the DOTC’s first efforts towards easing the present traffic situation in Manila, Makati, Pasay, and other affected areas especially in the southern part of the metropolis. Instead of taking private vehicles, motorists will now have a more efficient alternative. We are also working on other solutions which we will be ready to implement as our infrastructure projects are rolled out later this year to 2015,” DOTC spokesperson Michael Arthur Sagcal said on Wednesday.
The service aims to provide a “reliable” and “faster” way to bring commuters from the south into Metro Manila, PNR general manager Joseph Allan Dilay said.
The initial phase of the special coach service will run 4 times per day, with the following schedules:
Route Time of Departure Time of Arrival
Tutuban to Sta. Rosa 5:47am 7:33am
Sta. Rosa to Tutuban 8:00am 9:46am
Tutuban to Sta. Rosa 4:17pm 6:03pm
Sta. Rosa to Tutuban 6:08pm 7:54pm
To get to the Buendia station in Makati, it takes 31 minutes from the Tutuban station and one hour and fifteen minutes from the Sta. Rosa station.
PNR said it will evaluate whether or not to increase the number of trips depending on turnout of riders.
PNR added that it will extend its commuter rail’s normal operating hours from the current 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. schedule to a longer period of 4 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
The railway’s commuter line currently serves an average of 65,000 passengers on 70 trips per day.