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PNR eyes alternative transpo for riders during 5-year stop operations —exec

The Philippine National Railways (PNR) is coordinating with other agencies and local government units to provide alternative modes of transportation for riders during the five-year paused operations of the train system, an official said Friday.

“Ang  [Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board] ay maaaring magbukas ng bagong special bus lanes at jeepney routes po,” PNR general manager Jeremy Regino told Dobol B TV.

(The LTFRB can open new special bus lanes and jeepney routes. )

“Tayo din po ay makikipagkonsulta po sa mga [local government units] para maayos din po nang husto ang mga alternatibong transportasyon” he added.

(We are also consulting with the LGUs for the smooth implementation of alternative transportation.)

“I-a-nnounce namin ‘yung final na ruta at mga istasyon na kung saan sila (passengers) sasakay, malapit din don mismo kung saan sila sumasakay," Regino also said.

(We will announce the final routes as well as the stations of where will the passengers will be loaded, which will also close to the previous station.)

On "24 Oras," LTFRB Tech Division head Joel Bolano said jeepneys and buses will be used to augment the transprtation needs of commuters with the temporary halt of PNP operations.

“Ang target will come from Tutuban going to South as far as Alabang FTI and coming from the north which is from Malabon to Blumentritt,” he said.

LTFRB said that the temporary stoppage of the PNR operations will be in segments, but cleared that not all PNR lines will be closed during the construction of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR).

According to Regino, the temporary stoppage of the PNR operations will be in segments.

He said the government will save around P15 billion if the operations in PNR are halted during the construction of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR).

The PNR will make an announcement to the public two months before the stoppage.

There are 30,000 passengers daily from Governor Pascual Station in Malabon to Calamba Station in Laguna, while 2,000 from Alabang Station in Muntinlupa to Calamba, according to Regino.

Asked if the PNR will lay off some workers due to the stoppage of operations, Regino said the PNR will continue operations as new lines are set to open in the south.

During a House hearing on Thursday, Transportation Undersecretary for Railways Cesar Chavez said they are looking at temporarily stopping PNR operations to give way to the construction of the NSCR project. —With Sherylin Untalan/KBK, GMA Integrated News