San Miguel Corp. (SMC) has started construction of the MRT-7 train depot, a key element of the company’s first mass rail project.
A 20-hectare property in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan will serve as the main stabling area or train depot of the MRT-7 project.
SMC said the depot would have enough capacity to accommodate up to 150 train cars, exceeding the 36 trainsets or 108 rail cars currently set for the project.
The higher capacity will ensure that there will be enough room for future expansion, should the need for more trains based on commuter demand arise, the company said.
The depot will also house essential facilities dedicated to the maintenance and operations of the trains.
“This is yet another important milestone reached by our MRT-7 team, who have been diligently working for several years now, even throughout this pandemic, not only to build the physical structure of the rail system, but also to overcome the many right-of-way and property-related challenges faced by a project of this scale,” SMC president and CEO Ramon Ang said.
“With the necessary land area for the MRT-7 depot finally complete, we can’t waste any more time; our people are fully committed to delivering this vital project to the public as soon as possible,” he added.
With the start of construction on the depot, SMC estimates that the facility will be ready to support essential operations by the end of 2023.
All of MRT-7’s 108 train cars from South Korea are expected to be fully delivered to the country by the end of this year.
SMC said project completion for the MRT-7 currently stands at over 60 percent, with most of the construction work focused on the first 12 of its total 14 stations.
“Construction on the last two stations, as well as the train depot, had been delayed due to right-of-way issues related to their original sites,” it said.
“In recent years, the government was able to identify–and deliver–an alternative site for the depot. However, this meant that stations 13 and 14 also had to be realigned along Quirino Highway towards San Jose del Monte, giving rise to further right-of-way issues that the government and the company are working to resolve at present,” SMC added.
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