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DOTr confirms 5-year temporary shutdown of PNR operations
DOTr confirms 5-year temporary shutdown of PNR operations
DOTr confirms 5-year temporary shutdown of PNR operations
by Ellicia Del Mundo17 February 2023
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia commons

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) confirmed on Thursday that the operations of the Philippine National Railway (PNR) will be temporarily suspended to give way for the construction of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) project.

During the House Committee on Transportation's briefing, DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Cesar Chavez confirmed that PNR operations would be halted for about 5 years.

"In the spirit of transparency, we confirm that. Let me explain. Kailangan ihinto ang operasyon ng PNR, sapagkat gusto nating matapos ang proyektong ito. Ang isa sa causes of the delay in the North-South Commuter Project and the Manila-Malolos [railway project] is because of the continuous operation of the PNR," he told lawmakers when asked if the rumor that PNR might be stopped was true.

Citing a study from the transportation department's consultants, Chavez said the government can save PHP 15 billion by halting the PNR operations.


"Sa ganyun, imbes na marami kang utilities na ire-relocate, doon ka na mismo sa sentro ng linya ng PNR gumawa ng riles," he added.

Chavez noted that the volume of passengers in PNR declined from 50,000 during the pre-pandemic to 20,000 to 25,000 now in the post-pandemic.

But the DOTr Undersecretary assured that they have been coordinating with the Land Transporation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in setting up alternate modes of transportation to assist the affected passengers.

"Just to contextualize, we need to stop the operation of PNR because our objective is to construct the South Commuter Railway with sustainable focus and speed based on the timeline and at a minimal cost," he further said.


The DOTr is eyeing to temporarily stop PNR operations by summer, the DOTr Undersecretary said.

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