LRT1 hires new train drivers, tellers to beef up service improvements

Customer service, experience at fore with Project Arangkada
KILALANIN: Unang babaeng driver ng LRT-1
1st LRT 1 lady driver followed engine roar in her heart
Look: First lady LRT driver
LRMC introduces first female driver of LRT-1
LRMC introduces first female driver of LRT-1
Si Kathleen, ang 1st lady driver ng LRT

09 August 2016, MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) operator of LRT 1 today announced the hiring of its first female driver, who is among the new batch of station personnel hired and deployed to beef up railway operations on LRT1.

Under Project Arangkada, LRMC recently added 105 station tellers, 25 station supervisors, and 30 train drivers, in a bid to add more trips per day and open more teller booths at the station.

All new hires of LRMC had to fulfill strict requirements, with focus on the personnel’s technical competence, skills, and aptitude.

Under these strict hiring guidelines, LRMC hired its first female driver, 26 year old Kathleen dela Paz, a Hotel Restaurant Management graduate, wife, and mother of two. She started driving the trains earlier this month, following her completion of a specialized training course, taken alongside her fellow drivers.

“LRMC is very proud to hire its first lady driver demonstrating our company’s belief that skills and competence are not gender-specific. Ms. Dela Paz has shown prowess, customer-orientation, and a willingness to learn that dovetails with LRMC’s customer-focused philosophy,” said LRMC Operations Director Rodrigo Bulario.

Ms. Dela Paz, along with the new drivers, underwent specialized training to ensure that they could adequately serve in their respective positions. The training sessions comprised both technical and practical aspects, such as safety communication, incident/accident management, fault reporting, basic train driving and intervention, and hauling procedure for drivers. Refresher courses and customer service training are also regularly given to LRMC personnel.

Project Arangkada operationalizes LRMC’s mandate to increase train capacity to serve the estimated 400,000 commuters who ride LRT1 everyday.

LRT 1 elevators, escalators at Doroteo Jose, EDSA stations now back in operation

08 August 2016, MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Elevators and escalators at two passenger stations of Light Rail Transit (LRT 1) are now back in operation, following the issuance of permits to operate by the city governments of Manila and Pasay.

According to LRT 1 operator Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC), the six escalators and two elevators at the Doroteo Jose Station and two elevators at the EDSA Station are among the 32 lifts already rehabilitated in partnership with original equipment manufacturers Schindler and Otis.

The Company is optimistic that the lifts in Roosevelt, Balintawak, and Monumento stations will likewise be granted permits to operate in the next few months for the convenience of the average 400,000 commuters along the LRT 1.

The restored elevators and escalators also include upgrades incorporating PWD-compliant features such as Braille buttons, accessibility of location of the controls to persons in wheelchairs, among others.

Since taking over the concession last September 2015, LRMC has been undertaking system improvements on LRT 1 such as the repair of light rail vehicles (LRVs), rail replacements, deployment of additional manpower and improvement of the stations’ lighting for the safety and better visibility of passengers.

Earlier, LRMC announced the improvements of LRT-1 passenger stations in preparation for the delivery of new trains from the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA). All 20 passenger stations of the existing LRT 1 system will be improved to enhance accessibility, safety and security of commuters.

LRMC is the joint venture of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation’s Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp. and Ayala’s AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp. (AC Infra) and the Philippine Investment Alliance for Infrastructure’s Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) PTE Ltd.

LRMC decreases environmental footprint with ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya partnership

All united for the environment. Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) seals partnership with ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation Inc. (ABS-CBN LKFI) and its partners in support of the Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis projects. In photo during the recent MOA signing are (from left to right): Motolite ULAB Supervisor Rita Regalado, LRMC Corporate Communications Head Rochelle Gamboa, ABS-CBN LKFI Managing Director Susan Afan, LRMC President and CEO Jesus Francisco, ABS-CBN LKFI Central Marketing Head Paul Mercado, LRMC HSEQ Director Val Reyes, and Genetron Pollution Control Officer Jocelyn Panen.

LRMC decreases environmental footprint with ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya partnership
LRT-1 operator ensures proper treatment and recycling of its used oil and batteries with Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis projects

Manila, PHILIPPINES – LRT-1 operator Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) recently inked a partnership with ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation Inc. in an effort to decrease its environmental footprint through the latter’s Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis projects.

In a signing event held at the Eugenio Lopez Jr. Communications Center, LRMC and ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya top officials and partners formally sealed the agreement which will facilitate the donation of LRMC’s used oil and batteries to the Foundation. ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya, through its partners Motolite and Genetron, will then handle the proper treatment and recycling of used batteries and oils – the proceeds of which will directly go to ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya’s projects.

“Our mandate is to safely transport commuters and while we are doing that, we’d also like to create the least impact on the environment as possible. We partnered with ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation to ensure our used oil and batteries are properly handled and used to help the worthy causes that the Foundation supports,” says LRMC President and Chief Executive Officer Jesus P. Francisco. Francisco continues, “We are privileged to be involved in protecting the environment and helping the Foundation’s causes through this partnership.”

Among the projects that will benefit from the partnership are ABS-CBN’s Lingkod Kapamilya’s Bantay Kalikasan, which tackles environmental protection; Bantay Bata 163, which looks after the welfare of Filipino children; and Sagip Kapamilya, which serves as the Foundation’s arm for emergency humanitarian aid.

ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Managing Director Susan Afan adds, “This partnership with LRMC will greatly help in fueling the work we do on the ground. It is heartwarming to have companies like LRMC put to fore the cause of protecting the environment by partnering with us in our Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis projects. We thank LRMC and all our partners for their trust and support to the Foundation.”

Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis are initiatives that aim to address the threat posed by used lead-acid batteries and untreated used oil to humans and the environment. Launched in 2000 and 2007 respectively, Bantay Baterya and Bantay Langis has since struck partnerships with numerous companies to promote the proper handling and treatment of these regulated wastes. To date, Bantay Baterya has collected over 2 million kilograms of lead-acid batteries while Bantay Langis has recovered 50,000 liters of used oil from donor companies.

LRMC seals P24B loan agreement for LRT-1 Cavite extension

Solid vote of confidence for LRT-1 Cavite extension. Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) signed a P24-billion loan agreement for the LRT-1 Cavite Extension with lender banks Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank), Security Bank Corporation, and Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) in a ceremony held at the Makati Shangri-La recently.

The 15-year Omnibus Loan and Security Agreement (OLSA) signed by top officials of the banks and LRMC covers the LRT-1 Cavite Extension Project and rehabilitation of the present LRT-1 system.

P15.3 billion of the total loan amount will be allocated for the Cavite extension, which will connect the present endpoint at Baclaran to the Niog area in Bacoor, Cavite. The extension will add eight new stations that will serve passengers in the areas of Pasay City, Paranaque City, Las Pinas City, and Cavite. The new stations are Aseana, MIA, Asia World, Ninoy Aquino, Dr. Santos, Las Pinas, Zapote, and Niog.

The remaining P8.7 billion will be used for the rehabilitation of the present LRT-1 system including restoration of light rail vehicles (LRVs) and various station repairs.

In photo during the signing are (top row, left to right): Metrobank’s Antonio Ocampo, Jr. and Mary Mylene Caparas; Metro Pacific Light Rail Corporation’s David Nicol; LRMC’s Fatima Agbayani and Jesus Francisco; Light Rail Manila Holdings Inc.’s Karim Manuel Garcia and Noel Eli Kintanar; Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings Pte. Limited’s Michael Rodriguez; and Metrobank Trust’s Josefina Tuplano and Lalaine Sta. Ana. Also in photo are (bottom row, left to right): RCBC Capital’s Claudine Del Rosario and Jose Luis Gomez; First Metro Investment’s Justino Juan Ocampo and Rabboni Francis Arjonillo; RCBC’s Elizabeth Coronel and Michelangelo Aguilar; Security Bank’s Alberto Villarosa and Mariza Arcilla; SB Capital’s Eduardo Olbes and E. Federico Galang III; and RCBC Trust’s Lourdes Ferrer and Eric Victoria.

LRMC to embark on 29-km rail replacement project for LRT-1

01 February 2016, Manila, PHILIPPINES — Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) operator Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) will commence its 29-kilometer track rail replacement project in April as part of its ongoing rehabilitation efforts for the 32-year old train line.

The rail replacement will cover the northbound route from Baclaran to 5th Avenue. The project will complete the overall renewal of LRT-1’s tracks system, with Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) about to complete the first phase of the project after carrying out the replacement of the 23-kilometer southbound tracks last December on top of the eight kilometers already replaced in previous years.

According to LRMC Engineering Director Rudy Chansuyco, the new rails are expected to be delivered in April this year. “Our target is to be done by the end of 2017 with new, modern tracks that will allow for smoother rides for our passengers. The rail replacement will cover the systematic replacements of rails and other rail components to keep the LRT-1 line functioning at optimum quality and enable train speed to be increased from 40kph to 60kph.” Both will result to the increased life span of LRT-1 as the rail replacement is expected to minimize wear and tear for the rolling stock and increase the reliability of the whole train system.

Chansuyco maintained that the rail replacement is just one of the programmed improvement projects that LRT-1 will undergo. He added that LRMC is also currently working on the rehabilitation of elevators and escalators, improvement of the stations and restoration of old trains. New light rail vehicles (LRVs) are coming soon to augment the existing fleet.

The project will also benefit communities in close proximity to the stations, as the new set of tracks will significantly reduce the vibration and noise levels currently experienced.

Furthermore, LRMC is set to construct the 11.7-kilometer extension from the present end-point at Baclaran to Bacoor, Cavite. Eight new stations will be built along the route, with the goal of easing traffic conditions in the Paranaque-Las Pinas-Cavite corridor.

LRMC is the joint venture of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation’s Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp. and Ayala’s AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp. (AC Infra) and the Philippine Investment Alliance for Infrastructure’s Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) PTE Ltd. It took over the operation and management of LRT-1 last September 2015. (ENDS)

LRMC eyes LRT 1 station improvements

21 October 2015, MANILA, PHILIPPINES – In preparation for the delivery of new trains, Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) today disclosed that all 20 passenger stations of the existing LRT Line 1 system will be improved to enhance accessibility, safety and security of commuters.

LRMC President and CEO Jesus P. Francisco said, “When government brings in new light rail vehicles (LRVs), we expect passenger traffic to increase; thus, the need to make sure
that the stations are ready to handle the expanded capacity.” The plan, he said, is consistent with its commitment to provide better service and giving commuters the best station environment as possible.

The Station Improvement Project will start with Doroteo Jose Station, the interchange terminal of LRT Lines 1 and 2 in Sta. Cruz, Manila. After the improvements, it is expected that stations will be well-lit and organized to allow better passenger flow.

Construction for Doroteo Jose Station is targeted to start on December 2015.

In March 2016, the two biggest stations, Central and Baclaran, and three smaller stations, R. Papa, Abad Santos, and Gil Puyat will follow. The rest of the 14 will start in May and August 2016.

“The Station Improvement Project complements our plan to enhance passenger safety, comfort and convenience and is aligned with our objective of improving the efficiency of the LRT1 system.” Francisco said.

LRT Line 1 currently accommodates a daily average of 400,000 commuters from Baclaran in Pasay City to Roosevelt in Quezon City.

LRMC took over operation and maintenance of LRT Line 1 last September 12. It will also be responsible for the construction of the 11.7-kilometer extension from the present end point at Baclaran to the Niog area in Bacoor, Cavite.

The extended rail line is expected to help increase the capacity of LRT 1 from 500,000 to 800,000 passengers daily and benefit more than four million residents in the southern part of Metro Manila and of Cavite.

LRMC launches full assessment of LRT 1

01 October 2015, MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Two weeks into the operations of LRT Line 1, Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC) has embarked on an assessment of the trains, substations, tracks and passenger terminals to determine the extent of work needed to improve light rail service for approximately 400,000 passengers daily.

LRMC President and Chief Executive Officer Jesus P. Francisco said the company is prioritizing the baseline requirements for passenger safety and convenience. “The priority is to bring back more light rail vehicles (LRVs) on the line to reduce the customers’ waiting time,” he stressed. “We also need to improve the condition of the rails in preparation for the time when we can bring up the trains up to speed.”

As part of LRMC’s system-wide review, the assessment of the power supply system, line and catenary system, signaling, and telecommunications is also being undertaken. “Together with DOTC and LRTA, LRMC will work to complete the full assessment of Line 1 as soon as possible,” he added.

Earlier, the company has disclosed plans to upgrade the passenger terminals, including facilities such as escalators and elevators – all 32 of which across the stations will be repaired and overhauled. Already, the company has started with the restoration of lighting at all passenger terminals for enhanced passenger safety.

“LRMC is committed to passenger safety and convenience which are the foremost objectives of our partnership with the Government,” Francisco explained. “Expanding the capacity of the trains to lessen waiting time means refurbishing existing trains and purchasing new ones to complement the Government’s acquisition of new LRVs which we hope will come as per DOTC and LRTA’s timetable.”

LRMC is a joint venture company of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation’s Metro Pacific Light Rail Corporation (MPLRC), Ayala Corporation’s AC Infrastructure Holdings Corporation (AC Infra), and Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) PTE Ltd. (MIHPL).

On October 2 last year, LRMC signed a Concession Agreement with the DOTC and LRTA for the P65-billion LRT 1 Cavite Extension, Operation & Maintenance Project which is part of the 2011-2016 Philippine Development Plan (PDP) of the Philippine Government to accelerate infrastructure.

LRTA operated LRT 1 until September 12, 2015, when it was turned over to LRMC. LRT 1 was originally constructed in 1981 with 18 stations from Baclaran to Monumento. Full commercial operations started in May 1985. A further 5.7-kilometer and two additional stations were added to the existing line at the northern end, with full operation from Baclaran to Roosevelt commencing October 22, 2010.

Official Statement

In response to the recent statement of Transportation Secretary Jun Abaya on September 4,
2015 regarding claims by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) to the
Department of Finance (DOF) for the LRT 1 Project, LRMC clarifies that we have not made any
claims to the Government at this time.

Our focus is on taking over the existing system (Effective Date) on September 12, 2015.

The Concession Agreement outlines the obligations of the Grantors and the Concessionaire. If
there is any shortfall, the extent and magnitude of such shortfalls will be determined after
Effective Date. Any funds from the Government to LRMC will be used to improve the efficiency,
safety and overall riding experience of the Filipino public.

LRMC remains committed to expand the capacity of the trains to lessen waiting time. We will
refurbish existing trains and purchase new ones for the comfort of the passengers. To further
improve the safety of the riding public, we will replace the entire track system. We will
rehabilitate all the stations to improve the overall ridership experience. Finally, we will extend
the track by 11 kilometers from Baclaran to Niyog, Cavite to increase the reach of this mode of
transportation to a larger population.

LRMC is taking over a 30-year old train system. Improvements will not happen overnight but we
and our 1400-strong team of Filipino engineers, train drivers and tellers will work rigorously to
alleviate the pain points of the riding public.

ENDS

LRT Line 1 Concession Agreement Signed

02 October 2014, Manila, Philippines – Light Rail Manila Corporation (LRMC), the joint venture company of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation’s Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp. (MPLRC), Ayala Corporation’s AC Infrastructure Holding’s Corporation (AC Infra), and the Philippine Investment Alliance for Infrastructure’s Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) PTE Ltd (MIHPL), today signed together with the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) the Concession Agreement for the P65-billion Light Rail Transit line 1 Cavite Extension and Operations & Maintenance Project.

LRMC was formally awarded the project by the DOTC and LRTA after the consortium of MPLRC, AC Infra and MIHPL submitted the lone bid with a premium of P9.35 billion.

Signing the 32-year Concession Agreement on behalf of LRMC were Messrs. Jose Ma. K. Lim, President and Chief Executive Officer of Metro Pacific Investments Corp., and John Eric T. Francia, President and Chief Executive Officer of AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp.

Sec. Joseph Emilio A. Abaya signed the agrement on behalf of the DOTC and LRTA as Grantors under the Concession Agreement.

Witnessing the signing were Messrs. Manuel V. Pangilinan, Chairman of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation, Fernando Zobel de Ayala, President and Chief Operating Officer of Ayala Corporation, Michael Rodriguez, Managing Director of Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets, DOTC Assistant Secretary Jaime Fortunato A. Caringal and Undersecretary Cosette V. Canilao, Executive Director of the Public Private Partnership Center.

Under the Concession Agreement, LRMC will operate and maintain the existing LRT Line 1 and construct an 11.7-km extension from the present end-point at Baclaran to the Niog area in Bacoor, Cavite. A total of eight new stations will be built along this route, which traverses the cities of Paranaque and Las Pinas, up to Bacoor, Cavite. LRMC will invest P35 billion in the project.

The extended rail line is envisioned to help ease the worsening traffic conditions in the Paranaque-Las Pinas-Cavite corridor. It is also expected to enhance commercial development around the rail stations.

The International Finance Corporation, the Development Bank of the Philippines, Pinsent Masons LLP, and C&G Law (Gatmaitan, Yap, Patacsil, Gutierrez and Protacio) acted as transaction advisers to the Grantors in the bidding of this project.

Mr. Fernando Zobel de Ayala said, “We are very pleased to reach this milestone on this important infrastructure project. The LRT Line 1 is a vital component of our city’s transport network that will help ease the pressures brought about by the increasing development around the city. As we assume the responsibility for the operations of the train line next year, we hope to be able to deliver in due time a much improved riding experience that is safe and efficient for our daily rail commuters.”

Mr. Manuel V. Pangilinan remarked, “An efficient transport system is a catalyst for growth and an extended LRT 1 running all the way to Bacoor will generate growth along the corridor. The LRT 1 has been in operation for over 20 years and today’s event brings forth the beginning of a new age for Metro Manila commuters. MPIC with our partners Ayala Corporation and Macquarie Infrastructure with Bouygues Travaux and Alstom behind LRMC, together with proven expertise of RATP Dev, a global metro operator, look forward to providing an improved and extended LRT 1.”

“We stay firm on our commitments to deliver a safe, reliable, and world-class rail system comparable to commuter railway hubs in our region and bring value for what commuters pay for. These will encourage more people to opt for the LRT1 as their preferred mode of commuting and thus relieve the increasingly heavy traffic routes, rising fuel prices and concern for air pollution,” Pangilinan added.

Mr. Michael T. Rodriguez said, PINAI is excited to be a part of this landmark infrastructure project with our partners Metro Pacific Investments Corporation and Ayala Corporation. LRT Line 1 is an ideal investment for PINAI and offers significant long-term socio-economic benefits.

LRMC has forged partnerships with three leading French companies to deliver a world class rail transit system. Both Bouygues Travaux Publics and Alstom Transport are well known for their impressive track records in constructing mass rail transit systems in France and other parts of the world. RATP Group, operator of the Paris Metro, has been tapped as LRMC’s technical partner.

Following the signing of the Concession Agreement, the Grantors and LRMC are expected to complete certain requirements and obligations before LRMC officially takes over the existing operations, which is scheduled no later than one year from the signing of the Concession Agreement. (ENDS)