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A new railway system is about to be built across multiple cities in Metro Manila. Aptly dubbed as the “Metro Manila Subway Project,” the train line is expected to ease traffic, aid mobility within the metro, and ultimately, address commuter woes related to the country’s public transportation system.

The construction is already underway, as officials broke ground early Wednesday. In case you missed all the deets, however, here’s everything you need to know about this groundbreaking infrastructure.

It will be the first of its kind in the country

Unlike the LRT-1, LRT-2, and MRT-3, the new railway system will be built underground. The subway will be the first if its kind in the Philippines and is expected to be 36 kilometers long, making seven local governments and three of Metro Manila’s business districts more accessible to commuters.

It will be built with the support of the Government of Japan

The flagship project under the current administration’s “Build, Build, Build” program, the subway will be built through an Official Development Assistance (ODA) loan worth ¥104.530-billion or P51-billion loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). This is the latest of the national government’s many infrastructure projects with the said agency.

It will have 15 stations in total

The initial phase of the project will build the first three stations–Quirino Highway-Mindanao Avenue Station, Tandang Sora Station, and North Avenue Station–with a partial operations target on 2022. Come 2025, however, and all 15 stations from Quirino Highway in Quezon City to NAIA Terminal 3 in Pasay and FTI in Taguig will be fully operational.

It will make use of disaster-resilient technologies

Primary concerns in building a subway are frequent flooding as well as earthquakes. With Japan having built their underground railway systems with the same issues in mind, technological advancements in train operations will be applied, such as Tunnel Boring Machines (TBM) and subway flood control equipment.

It will shorten travel time

With 19 train sets of eight or ten cars running at 80 kilometers per hour, the travel time from Quezon City to NAIA Terminal 3 will only take 30 minutes long for up to 1.5 million passengers daily.

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