MORE than 6,000 jobs are expected to be generated, and billions more added to the national economy on completion, when construction of the country’s first modern subway transport system in Makati City starts by next month.
This is according to Mayor Abby Binay as she announced that the city’s joint venture agreement with a private consortium will soon break ground for the construction of the 10-kilometer, underground train line project costing $3.7 billion (around P200 billion) but at no cost to the government.
Based on estimates by the Japan International Cooperation Agency, the multi-phased project, once done, would contribute $600 million (more than P32 billion at current exchange rate) annually to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
Binay stressed the city government would not spend a single centavo on the project and only contribute land that it owns even as the expected job bonanza is also expected to mainly benefit city residents.
The intracity subway will have 10 air-conditioned stations and can accommodate more than 700,000 passengers daily.
The project’s proponents said that Makati is at the very heart of the jobs-living imbalance: with approximately 5 million in Makati in daytime when only 500,000 actually live here.
“This means 4.5 million people flood into Makati every workday. The congested streets are well past the breaking point of capacity, and existing transport systems cannot keep up with demand. Productivity loss is acutely a Makati issue,” they said.
This system thrives through interconnectivity with existing rail lines, enhancing the mobility of Manileños and all people across Metro Manila.
The future rail line (Metro Manila Mega Subway) will complement the other mass transport systems such as the Metro Rail Transit-3 on Edsa and the Pasig River Ferry System.
Binay previously explained that the unsolicited public-private sector partnership (PPP) proposal and draft joint venture agreement submitted by a consortium of foreign and local companies led by listed firm, IRC Properties Inc., has been granted “original proponent status.”
She stressed she wanted to make the subway her “legacy” as mayor.
“This mass transport system is Makati’s most ambitious PPP project to date. It’s part of my vision to make Makati the country’s first digital city—a city that is future-proof, connected and innovative without losing its cultural heritage and identity,” Binay pointed out.
The subway is seen as a solution to easing the traffic in Makati’s central business district by linking key points in the area such as Ayala Avenue, Makati City Hall, Poblacion Heritage Site, University of Makati and Ospital ng Makati, among others.