MANILA, Philippines – Metro Rail Transit line 3 (MRT3) passengers may have one less thing to complain about when the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) completes the rehabilitation of all 63 toilets in the train system's 13 stations by September.
DOTC spokesperson Michael Arthur Sagcal made the statement a few days after Senator Grace Poe asked the DOTC to provide updates on the planned projects to upgrade and rehabilitate the MRT3.
“One of the basic necessities of an MRT-3 rider are functioning and decent comfort rooms. Alongside our improvement projects for train operations is this toilet rehabilitation project, which responds to the call of our commuters for better passenger comfort and convenience,” Sagcal said.
In a 2014 survey conducted by Poe's office, commuters listed non-functioning toilets, unclean restrooms, and lack of cubicles in their long list of complaints about the MRT3.
Poe, as chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order, led the Senate sub-committee that conducted hearings on MRT3 safety and maintenance in the wake of accidents last year.
Sagcal said that the 63 toilets in the 13 stations of the mass transit system would be re-tiled, repainted, installed with new fixtures, and will have ceiling improvements, electrical and mechanical upgrades, and plumbing and declogging works.
Priority would be given to toilets for male passengers and persons with disability (PWDs) that would be completed in 4 months, followed by renovations in toilets for female passengers to be completed in another 3 months.
Civil works are now underway at the North Avenue Station while other stations would begin in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile, the replacement of 150 meters of worn-out rails was carried out last weekend – from 9 pm on Saturday, February 28, to 12 noon on Sunday, March 1 – to enhance the train system’s operational safety. (READ: Shorter MRT3 hours this weekend)
Similar schedules will be observed in the coming weekends to accommodate more rail replacement works.
The MRT3 management again appealed for the riding public's patience and understanding while the rehabilitation works are ongoing, as these would improve the train system’s facilities and services. – Rappler.com