Jun 142013

The transportation department is postponing the bidding for the P60-billion LRT Line 1 Cavite extension and operation project to the end of next month from June 17 to give participating groups additional time, a regulatory filing Friday showed.

The decision followed recent discussions with the private sector made during one-on-one sessions with the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).

“Please be notified that the bid proposal submission date is hereby extended to July 30, 2013,” the filing, signed by Transportation Undersecretary Jose Perpetuo Lotilla, showed.

There are four qualified bidders for the project, which aims to extend the LRT Line 1 from the Baclaran terminal to the Niyog station in Bacoor, Cavite. This will also increase average weekday ridership from 560,000 passengers to 820,000 passengers by 2015.

The bidders are Consunji-led DMCI Holdings Inc., the Light Rail Manila consortium (Metro Pacific Investments and Ayala Corp.), the consortium of SMC Infra Resources Inc. led by San Miguel Corp.) and the MTD Samsung consortium headed by Malaysia’s MTD Group and South Korea’s Samsung.

Two other local groups, Romero-led EcoRail and Light Rail Transit Systems, also submitted documents but were disqualified for being late.

Lotilla told reporters early this week that the transportation department was mulling over the postponement of the bidding, citing several unsettled “issues.” He declined to elaborate.

“The bidders needed more time,” he said, noting that a project like the LRT Line 1 extension could be complicated given its “highly technical nature.”

The railway project is among the public private partnership (PPP) deals being auctioned by the government. The LRT Line 1 extension will involve the construction of a 10.5-kilometer elevated section while 1.2 km will be at street level.

The whole stretch of the integrated LRT 1 with a total length of 32.4 km will be operated and maintained by the private proponent for a period 35 years, including construction, information on the PPP Center website showed.

The three-decade-old LRT line 1 runs from Baclaran, Parañaque, to Roosevelt, Quezon City, along Taft and Rizal avenues and a portion of Epifanio de los Santos Avenue. Miguel R. Camus

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Tags: bidding , Business , deferment , lrt extension

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