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Hiked MRT/LRT fares possibly equal to aircon bus charges

January 6, 2011 11:39am

SUBIC, Zambales - If the hike proposal is approved, the new Metro Rail Transit (MRT) and Light Rail Transit (LRT) fares will equal charges in airconditioned buses, President Benigno Simeon "Noynoy" Aquino III said on Thursday.

Aquino said the government is looking at raising MRT and LRT fares to equal fares in airconditioned buses to reduce government subsidy for MRT and LRT operations in Metro Manila.

"Ang minumungkahi lang naman ho itapat natin sa sinisingil ng bus na airconditioned. Kung tutuusin pag sumakay ka ng MRT mas mabilis ang byahe kesa dun sa bus pero mas mababa ang halaga," he said in an ambush interview here.

(The suggestion here is just to equal what airconditioned buses charge. If you look at it closely the commute is faster when you ride the MRT bus the fare is lower.)

At present, commuters using the MRT pay between P10 to P15. The DOTC has earlier said the government currently subsidizes up to P48 for each MRT passenger, because the real cost of a P15 trip is P63.

The MRT, which follows the circumferential route of Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA), connects North Avenue in Quezon City to Taft Avenue Extension in Pasay City.

The LRT-1, meanwhile, connects Roosevelt Avenue in Quezon City to Baclaran in southern Metro Manila, while LRT-2 connects Marikina City to Manila.

Aquino said people in areas outside Metro Manila are urging the construction of LRT and MRT in their own areas.

"Ang pakiusap ng ibang mga lugar lampas ng NCR, sabi nila habng sinasubsidize niyo yan wala yung pagkakataon namin na magkaron rin kami ng sarili naming light rail," he said.

(The areas outside NCR are saying that while we're subsidizing LRT and MRT operations in Metro Manila, their chances of having their own train system are low.)

The Cabinet's economic cluster endorsed on Wednesday fare hikes for the MRT and LRT.

The fare hikes are still subject to approval by the LRT Authority (LRTA) Board, which will then subject the proposal to public consultation. – VVP, GMANews.TV
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