Monday, September 19, 2016

PHP170.7-B South Railway project to be pursued this year -- Albay solon

LEGAZPI CITY, Sept. 18 (PNA) -- Two infrastructure projects, including the PHP170.7-billion South Railway project that will revive the Philippine National Railways’ (PNR) Manila-Legazpi “Bicol Express” Line, will be pursued this year, an Albay lawmaker said.

Albay second district Representative Joey Salceda identified the PHP4.79-billion Passenger Terminal Building (PTB) area of the Bicol International Airport (BIA) project as the second infrastructure project to be pursued.

He said the two transport projects are now in the pipeline following their approval by the National Economic and Development Investment Coordination Committee.

Salceda, in a statement sent via e-mail, said Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, in a recent meeting, had assured him that the Department of Transportation (DOTr) will pursue the multi-billion south line railway project as previously approved by the past administration.

He said DOTr will start to work where the past administration left off, specifically the publication of Instruction to Bidders and the firming up of the project timelines.

Salceda, in an earlier interview, said that Ayala Corp., which will partner with Metro Pacific and San Miguel Corp. had expressed interest in participating in the bidding process for the south line railway project from PNR Tutuban to Legazpi City then to Matnog, Sorsogon.

“The participation of the investors in this project is a welcome move and I feel affirmed that this would be a viable investment,” he said.

Salceda, an economist, said the railway project investment would carry a 24 percent pure Internal Rate of Return (IRR) and PHP30 billion Net Present Value (NPV) at 15 percent Special Drawing Right (SDR).

He explained that the IRR, NPV and SDR are investment formulas that determine the feasibility and investment growth of a project.

The project would revive the PNR Manila-Legazpi “Bicol Express” Line which has a total span of 653 kilometers. It starts at Tutuban Center in Manila and run through Laguna, Batangas, Quezon before ending in Matnog, Sorsogon.

Salceda said this year DOTr earmarked PHP4.79-billion for construction of the PTB of the BIA, previously named Southern Luzon International Airport (SLIA).

The project is being implemented in two packages.

He said package 1 is an ongoing project involving construction of the runway, taxiway and apron and the putting up of a PHP708-million perimeter fence that was funded under calendar year 2012.

“This project consists of the concrete paving of a 2,100-meter by 45-meter runway, 2-stub taxiways and apron and the perimeter fence for the entire airport complex,” said Salceda.

He said there will be a rebidding based on the existing Terms of Reference for the PHP1.4 billion for the runway completion and PTB.

The airport project will also have a passenger boarding bridge or tube that is modularly designed to accommodate the addition of tubes.

Salceda said Tugade made a committment that the BIA would have two tubes worth PHP105 million which would be included in the budget once construction of the PTB starts.

“The DOTr management team assured that the BIA will be at par to international standards,” Salceda said.

Under package 2 the project will cover the construction of 17 buildings, including the control tower, cargo, administration and other auxiliary buildings and site developments such as the embankment work for the landslide area.

The two-story PTB will cover an area of 13,220 square meters while the runway extension will be from 2,100 meters to 2,500 meters of concrete pavement.

Site development will include the construction of a perimeter road and the completion of developments on the land side such as drainage and the water and power utilities.(PNA) BNB/GVR/MSA/CBD/PJN