How to solve traffic congestion? Improve the railway system, says DOTr

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) believes that improving the country’s train system could help in improving the worsening traffic condition, particularly in Metro Manila.

“Dito sa Metro Manila, ang tinitignan natin dito na makakatulong talaga para ma-solve yung traffic congestion is really to add mass transportation options for our public. Ang tinitignan natin isang importante sektor niyan ang sektor ng riles,” said Transportation Assistant Secretary Goddess Hope Libiran.

[Translation: What we are looking here in Metro Manila as a way to solve the traffic congestion is really to add mass transportation options for our public. We are currently looking at the railway sector.]

She added, “Kaya yung DOTr ngayon, ang focus namin ngayon ay building more railway lines and rehabilitating existing railway lines.”

[Translation: The DOTr is currently focusing on building more railway lines and rehabilitating existing railway lines.]

Libiran said that the Metro Manila Subway could be the answer to the country’s traffic woes.

Considered as one of the ambitious projects of President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration, the 27 km subway will have 15 stations, from Quezon City all the way to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City.

DOTr boasted that it will only take 30 minutes from North Avenue in Quezon City to NAIA.

For his part, urban planner Sylvester Wong said that the over P357 billion railway system is “revolutionary.”

“We have lots of above ground systems now, but the underground is to serve so much more,” said Wong.

With the construction of the subway project, Wong admitted that ride-hailing services or motorcycle taxis could help people find an easier way to navigate Metro Manila for the meantime.

“During the construction, you will find the need for other modes of getting around. This is where those ride-hailing and motorcycles [come] and other ways to navigate.”