The Department of Transportation (DOTr) awarded the two USD 937 million contract packages for the Philippines North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) project. Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and the Secretary of the Department of Transportation Jaime Jimenez Bautista attended the signing ceremony held at the President’s Hall in Malacañang Palace on 27 April 2023.
The contracts have been awarded to Acciona-DMCI joint venture and to Leighton-First Balfour join venture which will be responsible for the packages CPs S-02 and S-03b packages representing the third phase of the NSCR system, part of the South Commuter Railway project (SCRP).
“The contract signing means the start of the construction of the South Commuter Section or the South Commuter Railway Project (SCRP) and puts all phases of the NSCR system in full swing. As the civil works for these contract packages commence, we expect not only the generation of more than 2,000 jobs but also the creation of other opportunities and livelihood during its construction,” the President said during the event.
Under the first package (S02), a 7.9 km elevated line with 3 new stations (at España, Santa Mesa and Paco) will be constructed between Blumentritt to San Andres Bukid in Manila. PHP 28 billion (USD 501.4 million) is the value of the contract for the construction of this section and was awarded to Acciona Construction Philippines and DM Consunji joint venture.
The S03b second package of the line includes the construction of a 6.1 km rail section running along the South Luzon Expressway and includes the construction of a 4.7 km underground section and a 4.1 km ground section including a station at the Food Terminal Inc, in Taguig, 19 km north-west Manila (or in Manila Metro). PHP 23.9 billion (USD 428 million) is the value of this contract awarded to Leighton-First Balfour. This section will see the connection between NSCR and the future Metro Manila Subway project through the Food Terminal Inc and Senate stations.
“We have often underscored the significant economic and social benefits this new railway will bring to residents in Central Luzon and the Calabarzon area. This ambitious project will resurrect the once proud culture of rail transport in the Philippines,” Bautista said.
In November 2022, Hitachi Rail won a USD 814 million contract to design and install the electrical and mechanical systems as well as track works including the ETCS Level 2 for the 35.4 km Solis – Malolos section (the NSCR-N1 section).
In March 2022, DOTr ordered from the consortium of Sumitomo Corporation and Japan Transport Engineering Company 38 eight-car additional trains (304 train cars) worth JPY 72.5 billion (USD 527.2 million). The new trains, expected to be delivered in 2028, will operate on the Clark – Calamba section. In 2019 the consortium won a contract for the supply of 13 eight-car Sustina EMUs (104 train cars) for the contract package CP03 representing phase I of the NSCR between Tutuban, Manila and Malolos, Bulacan.
In March 2023, the Alstom-led consortium with Colas Rail was awarded by Mitsubishi Corporation a contract to deliver the ETCS level 2 technology and to be responsible for the track work and overhead contact line system.
This year, the Government of Philippines and JICA signed a USD 793.9 million agreement for the Malolos – Tutuban rail connection, part of NSCR, supporting the acquisition of Japanese technology and the new rolling stock.
In February 2023, the Government of Philippines and JICA signed two loan agreements totalling JPY 377 billion (USD 2.74 billion) for Malolos – Tutuban northern section of NSCR. For the 54.6 km South Commuter Railway Project between Tutuban and Calamba ADB and JICA have provided financing. In 2022, ADB has approved a USD 4.3 billion financing for the construction of the 55 km South Commuter Railway Project which will be served by 18 stations.
The Philippines North-South Commuter Railway has a total value of PHP 873.6 billion (USD 15.6 billion) linking Pampanga province in the Central Luzon, northwest of Manila, and Laguna Province situated in Calabarzon region in Luzon. The NSCR network comprises two lines (the north and the south component).
The first phase of the project – PNR Clark (91 km) – is divided into two sections with the 38 km PNR Clark 1 between Tutuban and Malolos and the 53 km Malolos – Clark section. This phase will ensure the connect between Tutuban station in Manila and New Clark City station with a branch to the Clark International Airport. PNR Calaba is the second phase of the NSCR project covering the 53 km southern section of the line running from Solis station to Calamba, in Laguna.
The Philippines North-South Commuter Railway system with a length of 147.2 km and 36 stations is expected to be completed in 2029 proving transport connection from Clark International Airport in Pampanga to Calamba in Laguna. Travel time will be cut by more than 2 hours from currently 4 hours and 30 minutes. The NSCR is designed to a capacity of 800,000 passengers per day. During its construction, approximately 110,000 direct and indirect jobs are expected to be generated.