LRT-1 fare increase assures extension to Cavite, says exec
(The Philippine Star) - July 13, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A P5 increase in LRT-1 fare will assure the construction of its extension to Sucat, Las Pinas and Bacoor, allowing at least 300,000 daily commuters to get to and from home in just minutes from Baclaran without traffic, the rail system’s top executive said.

Once built, the P30-billion Cavite Extension will allow travel from Baclaran to Sucat at only 15 minutes; to Las Pinas, 20 minutes; and to Bacoor, 30 minutes.

“We can virtually guarantee these travel times because we are traffic free. And we are investing P5 for every P1 revenue to ensure that LRT-1 is efficient, trouble free, and also clean. Today, trains come every 3.5 minutes, down from 5 minutes when LRMC took over operations and maintenance in 2015,” said Juan Alfonso, president of LRT-1 operator Light Rail Manila Corp. (LRMC).

The fare increase will give banks the confidence to lend to the company the funds for the Cavite Extension, knowing LRMC can recover its investment, he added.

At P5 more, the average fare will be at P25, or just about the same as a bus fare, and much lower than, taxi and transport network company (TNC) fares, “without traffic,” Alfonso said.

“LRT-1 is the solution to the traffic problem caused by the high population density and urbanization of Metro Manila,” he said, citing a JICA traffic study that estimated that traffic cost is P3.5 billion a day in Metro Manila.

“If we do nothing, it will become P5.4 billion a day in 2034, but by accelerating infrastructure projects, it can be reduced to P3 billion a day. And with projects like the Cavite Extension, this can be further reduced to P2.4 billion a day.”

Once built, the extension will stretch LRT-1 over 33 kilometers, from Roosevelt in Quezon City to Niog, Bacoor in Cavite City.  Travel time from Bacoor to Central Station in Manila will be down to 45 minutes, and to Roosevelt Station in one hour and 10 minutes, even during rush hours, he said.

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