The feasibility study of a Korean agency on a proposed light rail transit (LRT) in Davao City will be out in June.
In a report in the news site Davao Today, Davao City Investment and Promotions Center (DCIPC) Chief Ivan Cortez said the Korean Engineering and Construction Co. (KEC) will hand the study to Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
Cortez said KEC “have the option to implement the project as they will become the priority because they conducted the study.”
The study started October last year and is worth one million dollars.
According to reports, the proposed monorail LRT will span 30 kilometers and will cater to the current public transport passengers of the city, which will potentially increase by 7.1 per cent per year.
“In order for the LRT to be really feasible, they (KEC) have an initial recommendation that it should have at least 25,000 passengers per hour but the recent ADB (Asian Development Project) study says Davao City’s passengers are only 8,000 to 10,000 per hour,” said Cortez.
However, Cortez said “not to pre-empt the study as they (KEC) might have a solution for it already that we do not know.”
A South Korean study pushes nearer to reality hopes that Davao City, Mindanao’s premier city, would be the second metropolis to have a modern transport system after the National Capital Region (NCR).
Duterte said warlier that the Davao LRT would be smaller and not at the level of sophistication of the Manila LRT.
It would be a simple commuter train, said Duterte last year as the Korean company proposed the conduct of the study..
He said the LRT would be at no cost to the local government with the facility to be constructed under the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) scheme. The scheme would have the contractor build the LRT at its own expense, operate the facility for a number of years and then turn it over to the local government after it earns returns and recoup its investments.
In June 16 last year, KEC started the wheels rolling for the multi-million dollar project by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with City Hall on the conduct of the feasibility study.
During the signing ceremony, Duterte said the city’s traffic woes would further worsen with the city’s economic boom and fast-rising population.
Based on data, KEC overseas manager Dae Kwon Jung showed that Davao City has an annual population growth of 2.7%, while the vehicle volume growth rate in the Davao Region is pegged at 7.1%.
If no cure is found for its traffic woes, the outdated transport system and road network of Davao City, as the center of commerce and trade of the Davao Region, was expected to absorb the brunt of the rise in vehicle population of the region, Jung said.
Racing to the future with a grim scenario, Jung said that without a sound transport system, year 2040 would be a nightmare for city residents when the population would have reached 40 million.
Jung placed premium on a 13.6km LRT system from Roxas Avenue starting at the Ateneo de Davao University, passing Abreeza Mall in Bajada, SM Mall in Lanang then Mamay Road and the Davao International Airport in Buhangin. From 5,000 to 20,000 thousand passengers could be transported every hour by the monorail-type LRT running at 70kms per hour, said Jung.