Thursday, January 19, 2017

DOTr Statement on 260% increase of Common Station from Original Php778 M to Php2.8 B

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Here is the statement of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) in response to the post of Renato (Nato) Reyes Jr. re: 260% increase in the project cost for the Common Station from the original Php778 million in 2009 to Php2.8 Billion:

"CLARIFICATION: The Php777 million is not the cost for the SM City Annex Station. It is the ADDITIONAL COST TO THE ORIGINAL COST of the North Avenue Station of the North Extension Project (NEP) which was transferred to the SM Annex location because of MRT7. Please take note that the 2009 transfer of the NEP's North Avenue Station to the SM City Annex location was due to the fact that the MRT7 project was not yet in place back in 2006.

The original cost of the North Avenue Station of the NEP in 2006 was approximately Php780 million. When it was moved to SM City Annex in 2009, an additional Php777 million was needed with a total cost of around Php1.5 Billion. This is because the original North Avenue Station of the NEP was originally intended to service ONLY Lines 1 and 3. BUT, with the subsequent approval of Line 7, the government needed a bigger station to serve three (3) rail systems. Bigger station equals bigger budget.

The "additional" 777 million approved in 2009 was on top of LRT-1 NEP's original 2007 NEDA Board approved Project Cost of Php6.3 billion. The reason for the additional cost was because the SM Annex station (a.k.a. MM Integrated Rail Terminal) is larger than the original LRT-1 NEP terminal station across Trinoma (because instead of just being a transfer station between LRT-1 and MRT-3, the SM Annex station connected LRT-1, MRT-3, and MRT-7). Again, Php777 million is NOT the cost of the SM Annex station; Php777 million is the "ADDITIONAL" cost entailed by shifting from the original LRT-1 NEP terminal station across Trinoma to the SM Annex Station.

Between 2009 and 2014, changes to the parameters and inflation were made to the designs of the SM City Annex Station bringing up the cost fromPhp1.5 Billion to Php2.6 Billion.

Please take note that the Php2.8 Billion project cost for government, together with the contributions from the private sector partners shall deliver a larger (from 7,250sq meters to 13,700 sq. meters), more challenging, more comfortable, and convenient commuting experience to the passengers of the three connected rail systems.

Expedited implementation is one of the factors that led to the current location of the Common Station. With the agreement reached, DOTr can finally commence with the development of the Common Station. Without the agreement, we would have still be embroiled in injunctions, litigation, and bickering, not knowing when DOTr can finally deliver to the public the convenience that the Common Station has always been intended to deliver.

The Common Station is designed to accommodate up to 80,000 transferring passengers at peak hour. This will deliver of service that would allow reasonably fluid flow of passengers within the terminal.

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