Philippine Government awards Hitachi US$814m contract to deliver sustainable commuter railway

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The Philippine Government has awarded Hitachi Rail a US$814m contract to deliver the electrical and mechanical systems, and track works, for the country’s new commuter railway connecting Solis to Malolos.

The contract, called CP04, was awarded by the government’s Department of Transportation and will reduce rail carbon emissions and encourage the use of environmentally friendly public transport over higher polluting cars in the Philippines, Hitachi Rail noted.

The project will cover around 35.4km and nine stations on the North South Commuter Railway, a 147 km commuter line from Calamba to Clark, and will be funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Hitachi Rail will introduce its European Train Control System (ETCS) Level 2 signaling on the North South Commuter Railway. ETCS signaling technology monitors the train’s movement and the speed limit on the track and will help reduce the energy footprint of the railway by enabling very efficient operation of the trains.

The introduction of ETCS Level 2 signaling will also boost safety on the line by enabling automatic activation of train safety functions, including emergency braking in case of danger or if trains exceed the track’s maximum line speed.

Takuya Yamakawa, deputy head of Japan business, head of Asia and Japan initiatives (sales and projects), Railway Systems business unit, Hitachi, said, “We are proud to be awarded this contract to bring our digital signaling expertise to the Philippines, following our experiences pioneering the technology and successfully introducing it to countries across Europe and Asia. By delivering this project, Hitachi Rail will reduce a major commuter railway’s energy footprint, supporting greener travel.

“With ownership of cars and congestion in Manila projected to continue to increase rapidly, it is vital we support commuters to use more sustainable rail transport. Our state-of-the-art railway systems will do just that - encouraging rail travel by boosting safety, bringing huge benefits to passengers, and driving down emissions in the Philippines,” Yamakawa added.