Phase 1 of the P175-billion Philippine National Railways South Long Haul project from Calamba City, Laguna to Legazpi City, Albay will start construction in the second quarter of 2020.
Albay Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda, who has been pushing for the project for many years, said the bidding for the 408-kilometer PNR segment was completed November this year and would be awarded to the winning contractor in April 2020.
The PNR Long Haul stretch consists of a 639-kilometer standard gauge railroad tracks from Manila to Sorsogon, a component of the PNR Luzon System program.
“Finally, the PNR South Railways project which we have tediously designed as a key that will unlock economic potentials of the vast Southern Tagalog and Bicol areas, will soon be a reality,” said Salceda, the project’s original proponent.
The PNR South Railway segment will cut the Manila-Legazpi travel to less than five hours. It runs from Manila to Matnog in Sorsogon with nine major stations”•Manila, Los Baños, Batangas City, Lucena, Gumaca, Naga City, Legazpi City, Sorsogon City and Matnog.
Salceda said the PNR Luzon System under the Department of Transportation is among the big-ticket infrastructure projects under an official development assistance agreement recently signed between China and the Philippines.