MANILA — A $1.5 billion Light Rail Transit Line 4 in Metro Manila by businessman Salvador B. Zamora II is being offered to build and operate as a new investment in a railway project.
It would link up Taytay, Rizal and the Ortigas Business District, which is a 20-kilometer line. It will be Zamora’s latest endeavor into transportation enterprise after selling his stocks in the Metro Rail Transit Line 7 to San Miguel Corp, the year before.
“We are preparing the papers,” Zamora said in an interview. Initial talks with the Department of Transportation he said has begun.
Zamora said he is trying to secure a congressional franchise to operate, given recent statements by Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez that certain businesses are required to obtain, including public transportation entities.
“It might be easier to go with a franchise, you are protected by the law,” Zamora noted.
Big businesses see big returns in railway projects as the investors are slowly moving away from the over-congested venues of Metro Manila. As part of the government’s plan to decongest the metro, the private sector sees a massive commercial potential.
A similar LRT-4 project was approved by the board of the National Economic and Development Authority in 2015. But it lapsed in 2016.
It is hoped that the project will help ease the traffic congestion along the Ortigas Avenue especially during rush hours and alleviate the limited public transport for the people in Taytay and nearby areas.