Want to avoid metro traffic? Take the PNR
MANILA, Philippines – State-run Philippine National Railways (PNR) will extend operating hours and deploy a special coach service starting March so it can service more commuters who want to avoid heavier-than-usual traffic along Metro Manila roads.
The Department of Transportations and Communications (DOTC) urges commuters to consider PNR as alternative mode of transportation as Metro Manila braces for "carmaggedon" with the simultaneous construction of 15 major road projects starting this year.
"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," DOTC spokesperson Michael Arthur Sagcal said.
“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,” he added.
The projects include the P27-billion Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3, the P15-billion Ninoy Aquino International Airport expressway being undertaken by diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corporation, as well as the P18-billion tollroad connecting the North Luzon and South Luzon expressway of infrastructure giant Metro Pacific Investments Corporation.
1hr, 15 mins from Laguna to Makati
PNR general manager Joseph Allan Dilay said that the company is extending its normal operating hours to 4 am to 8 pm instead of 5 am to 7 pm.
The train service takes one hour and 15 minutes to the Buendia station in Makati City from Sta. Rosa station in Laguna, and 31 minutes from Tutuban station to the Buendia station. The railway currently serves an average of 65,000 passengers on 70 trips per day.
On March 3, Dilay said PNR will launch a special coach service with a special fare of P60 to P90. The service features air-conditioned train sets that can accommodate 120 passengers per trip – fully equipped with fixed seating, on-board comfort rooms, reclining seats, and a lounge section.
“The Special coach service is part of our program to revive the old glory of PNR, and to deliver improved services to the public. It will also enable riders from the south to take a reliable and faster means of transport into the heart of Metro Manila,” he added.
The service will run 4 times per day, leaving Tutuban station to Sta. Rosa at 5:45 am and the last trip arriving at the Tutuban station from Sta. Rosa at 7:54 pm.
Depending on ridership turnout, Dilay said PNR may increase the number of trips to serve more passengers.
PNR is currently looking at extending the Metro South Commuter Train service all the way to Calamba in Laguna from Tutuban.
DOTC said the government is also pursuing two major railway projects in Luzon connecting Cagayan in the north and Bicol in the south via the proposed 900-kilometer Integrated Luzon Railway (ILR) and the 90-km commuter rail link (also known as airport express rail). – Rappler.com