LOOK: Metro Manila Subway construction enters clearing phase

Rambo Talabong

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LOOK: Metro Manila Subway construction enters clearing phase
The government aims to open the Metro Manila Subway for partial operations by 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The construction of the long-awaited Metro Manila Subway project has begun its clearing phase in Valenzuela City on Saturday, December 21.

Led by Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade, transportation officials held a program to formalize the new phase, which came after 10 months since the project’s groundbreaking.

The clearing works span the so-called Partial Operability Section of the Manila Subway project, which comprises stations in Quezon City, the line’s depot in Valenzuela City, and buildings for the Philippine Railway Institute (PRI), the country’s first-ever railway training center.

The government aims to open the line for partial operations by 2021.

CLEARING. Backhoes populate the roads to clear for the Metro Manila Subway project. Photo from DOTr

What’s next: The clearing operations are needed to make way for the building phase. This involves acquiring land where the subway is planned to snake through.

The project needs 460 lots to function partially. The government has so far sent out offers to buy 364 of them. Of the 364, owners of the 285 have agreed to sell their property for the project.

A batch of project-affected landowners attended the Saturday ceremony and received their check payments.

As for informal settler families, the DOTr said 178 out of 183 affected families have already been resettled to “better and safer locations” in Disiplina Village in Barangay Bignay, Valenzuela City, with the support of the Valenzuela City local government. – Rambo Talabong/Rappler.com

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.