The multi-million Philippine National Railway (PNR) South Rail will finally get rolling this year
Officials of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and PNR Management gave this assurance to local officials from Albay, Sorsogon, Camarines Sur and Norte, the four mainland provinces of Bicol.
The South Rail project will get P151.3 million this year to finance the manufacture of new coaches including the railway track that would negotiate from the PNR Tutuban station to Matnog town in Sorsogon.
The South Rail project, once implemented, would also connect to the North Railway project worth p258 million.
T he PNR South Rail project will implemented in four segments covering a total of 653 kilometers which include: the Manila to Los Banos section with a length of 72 kilometers; Los Banos to Legazpi City with 406 kilometers; Legazpi City-Matnog with 117 kilometers; and Calamba-Batangas City with 58 kilometers.
The implementation of the Tutuban to Los Banos segment would be funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency, while the Los Banos to Matnog would be available through notice of loan proceeds from China.
Barangay Comon in Daraga, Albay would be the south rail central station and it will pass through the southern barangays beside the Bicol International Airport and Maharlika Highway up to Villahermosa village then going to Matnog town in Sorsogon province.
A spare line from Daraga to Legazpi City is also being planned.
Department of Transportation (DOTr) Assistant Secretary Cesar Chavez has discussed the possibility of converting the railroad from Daraga town to this city as an alternate road to ease the traffic congestion problems in these areas.
There are plans to buy out the PNR railway property from Daraga to Legazpi at P30,000 per square meter. (Jorge Hallare/PNA)