CLARK FREEPORT – The $2.7-billion loan for the construction of the 53-kilometer Malolos-Clark railway has been approved by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
The said loan is part of the Phase 2 of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) which is also known as the Philippine National Railways (PNR) Clark.
According to Transportation Assistant Secretary Goddes Hope Libiran, this is by far the biggest loan by the ADB granted to the Philippines.
Libiran added that the Phase 2 of the NSCR will be the first airport-railway link of the Philippines because it will have a station underneath the Clark International Airport Terminal 2, which current construction is already 60 percent finished.
From Malolos, the NSCR will also have a station in Calumpit, Bulacan; Apalit and the City of San Fernando in Pampanga, and at this freeport zone. Aside from this, also included in the said loan package of he ADB is the 1.9-kilometer viaduct of the NSCR from Solis going to LRT 1 at Blumentritt, Manila.
Also, in line with this, the Japan International Cooperation Agency had approved last year the $2-billion Official Development Assistance for the funding of coaches for the Phase 2 of the NSCR.
The coaches were designed to accommodate 350,000 passengers on a daily basis and can contain up to a million passengers daily until 2025.
At present, a cleaning up operation is ongoing at the former PNR railway in Malolos where Phase 2 going to this freeport and Phase 1 going to Tutuban and Blumentritt will commence.
The old rotting posts that were put up by the former contractor of the North Rail Project will also be torn down.