Sat. Jul 31st, 2021

MANILA – A total of 25 tunnel boring machines (TBM) will be used for the construction of the Metro Manila Subway, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said on Wednesday.

In a statement, the DOTr said the TBMs, being manufactured by JIM Technology Inc. from Japan, will create the project’s tunnels in a fast, efficient, and safe manner—not only digging but also laying out the concrete slabs surrounding the tunnels.

“May kakayahan din ang mga ito na mag-excavate sa pamamagitan ng iba’t ibang uri ng ground conditions, mula sa matitigas na bato hanggang sa buhangin (These are also capable of excavating in different ground conditions—from rocks to sand),” the DOTr said.

For the partial operability phase of the project, it said a total of six TBMs will initially be deployed.

On Monday, DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan said the first TBM will be completed by its manufacturer by June and will be delivered to the country by August.

He added that from the initial 13-month projected manufacturing time for a single TBM, it was cut to nine to 10 months after discussions between the DOTr and its manufacturer.

The DOTr said the subway will partially operate at the earliest by end of 2021—from the East Valenzuela Station in Valenzuela City to the North Avenue Station in Quezon City.

The project, spanning a total of 36 kilometers and consisting of 15 stations, would connect several of the cities in Metro Manila—from its depot in Valenzuela City all the way to the Ninoy International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City.

Once fully operational, the DOTr said traveling from Quezon City to NAIA will only take 45 minutes, compared to the current drive of 1 hour and 10 minutes. (ia/

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