Thursday, February 20, 2014

Extended MRT-3 operating hours beginning Monday

Extended MRT-3 operating hours will be tested by the DOTC and MRT-3 for one month beginning on Monday, February 24, 2014 to give further traffic-mitigating options to the public, according to DOTC spokesperson Dir. Michael Arthur Sagcal.

"From February 24 to March 7, [MRT-3] will start at 4:30 a.m. (from the North Ave. station) and 5:00 a.m. (from the Taft Ave. station), instead of 5:30 a.m. for both. From March 10 to 21, the last trips will run at 10:30 p.m. (from North Ave.) and 11:00 p.m. (from Taft) instead of 10:30 p.m., in addition to the earlier start of operations.

"The one-month testing period will allow [DOTC] to see whether commuters are willing to change their riding habits to earlier and later trips, and whether motorists will prefer to take the train over their cars. [DOTC] will also be able to assess its impact on nightly maintenance hours and operational costs for long-term sustainability."

PNR Special Coach from Sta. Rosa, Laguna to Tutuban, Manila
Another traffic-mitigating measure that the DOTC is rolling out is a PNR Special Coach service from Santa Rosa, Laguna to Tutuban, Manila. This will provide an alternative to those affected by the construction of the Skyway Stage 3 and NAIA Expressway, especially for motorists and commuters coming from the southern part of Metro Manila and Laguna.

According to Dir. Sagcal, "On March 3, the PNR will launch a Special Coach service, which will ply the Tutuban, Manila to Sta. Rosa, Laguna commuter rail line. These air-conditioned Special Coaches will have fixed seating, on-board comfort rooms, reclining seats, and a lounge area. Up to 120 people can take [the service] per trip.

"The Special Coach service will leave the Tutuban Station at 5:47 a.m. and 4:17 p.m.; and will leave the Sta. Rosa station at 8:00 a.m. and 6:08 p.m. daily. To get to the Buendia station in Makati, it takes 31 minutes from Tutuban, and 1 hour and 15 minutes from Sta. Rosa.

"Minimum fare is P60.00, which is good for the first 32 kilometers. For those traveling beyond this distance (the entire length of the commuter line is 48 kilometers), the fare is P90.00.

"More Special Coach trips may be added, depending on ridership demand. The PNR will also extend the operations its regular commuter line service, from the current 5 a.m. to 7 p.m., to the extended hours of 4 a.m. to 8 p.m."
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