Travel time from Tagum City, Davao del Norte to Digos City, Davao del Sur is expected to be reduced from three and a half hours to more than an hour once the first phase of the 102-kilometer Mindanao Railway Project starts operating in 2022.
Construction on the Mindanao Railway Project- Tagum-Davao-Digos (MRP-TDD) segment will start by the third quarter of 2018 and is expected to be completed by 2022.
The construction of the railway line will cost around PHP36 billion that will be funded through the national budget.
“The PHP35.91 billion MRP-TDD will make travel time faster by two hours, with frequency of trips of up to six trains per hour,” Department of Transportation (DOTr) Undersecretary for Railways Cesar Chavez said in a statement.
The MRP-TDD will consist of eight stations namely, Tagum, Carmen, Panabo, Mudiang, Davao Terminal, Toril, Santa Cruz and Digos.
The rail line will be built with a single track consisting of six five-car passenger trains with three spare cars, four locomotives and 15 freight cars.
The DOTr projects the daily ridership of the Tagum-Davao-Digos segment will increase to 134,060 by 2022; 237,023 by 2032 and 375,134 by 2042.
The feasibility study of the project will be submitted to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Board for its approval.
The Mindanao Railway Project will also connect key Mindanao cities such as Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, Iligan, Surigao and Zamboanga peninsula. (ABP/PNA)