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North Luzon Terminals to build P5-B bus terminal in Bulacan

Private consortium North Luzon Express Terminals Inc. (NLET) is eyeing to build an integrated bus terminal inside the Iglesia ni Cristo’s (INC) 75-hectare complex in Bocaue, Bulacan in a bid to decongest Metro Manila.

The Department of Transportation (DOTr), Iglesia ni Cristo, and NLET signed on Tuesday a memorandum of understanding covering the 11.5-hectare integrated bus terminal.

NLET president Christopher Garcia said the North Luzon Express Terminal will cost around P5 billion and the construction is targeted to start later this year and finish in two to three years.

“Hopefully, within the year we have to remember we are still subject to process of the law. This is only an MOU signing that the government and our company, Maligaya Development Corp., are on the same page,” Garcia told reporters on the sidelines of the signing ceremony in Pasig City.

“We still have to go through the process of unsolicited proposal ... Once we go through that, maybe we can start construction later this year,” he said.

The bus terminal will be built beside the INC’s Philippine Arena in Bocaue.

“This is a project through Maligaya Development Corp., the corporate arm of INC. Technically, they are the landlord. Sila ang nagpagawa nung development sa Philippine Arena,” he said.

NLET will enter into a long-term lease with Maligaya Development to operate the proposed integrated bus terminal, he said.

“Instead of using it for commercial purposes they decided to do this project na makakatulong sa bansa natin. We really need project,” Garcia said.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said the proposed bus terminal will reduce traffic in Metro Manila’s main thoroughfare EDSA.

“Ang mga bus na nasa Araneta pwede lumipat doon. Kung ililipat mo ‘yung terminal ‘di ba luluwag ang kalsada? Pangalawa po, maiibsan at mababawasan ang mga bus na papunta ng norte,” Tugade said.

The bus terminal is expected to reduce the number of provincial buses plying EDSA by 5,000 each day, according to the DOTr.

Tugade said the North Luzon Express Terminal will be technology-based, automated, and world-class.

The bus terminal will be constructed “at no cost to the government,” the Transportation chief noted.

Garcia said NLET is a consortium among several private investors specifically established for the purpose of building the bus terminal in Bulacan. —VDS, GMA News