After months of gradual speed increases, the MRT-3 now runs at a faster speed of 60 kph, further shortening travel and waiting times for passengers, its operator said Tuesday.
Average wait time for trains is now at 3.5 to 4 minutes from the previous 8 to 9.5 minutes. Travel from the North Avenue station to Taft Avenue station is cut to 50 minutes from the previous 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Trains from North Avenue station to Shaw Boulevard station (both directions) run with a speed of 60 kph, while trains fromm Shaw Boulevard station to Taft Avenue station (directions) run with a speed of 55 kph.
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The train line has been gradually increasing its speed over the past few months with the goal of hitting 60 kph by the end of 2020. Speeds started at 30 kph in September, up to 40 kph in October, and faster at 50 kph in November.
The last time the MRT-3 ran at 60 kph was in September 2013.
The improving speed was a result of rail replacement works in the rail line, which is part of the MRT-3's rehabilitation program. This project is being implemented by its maintenance provider Sumitomo-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries from Japan.
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Rail replacement works were completed in Septemeber, months ahead of its February 2021 target.
"The increase in train speed will provide our passengers a safer, faster and more reliable public transportation," MRT-3 Director for Operations Michael J. Capati said.
"During the first week of December, we have been performing test runs to ascertain the alignment and safety of railway tracks. We are targeting to increase the train operating speed to 60kph in the entire revenue line before this year ends, when all system checks have been performed to ensure compliance to safety standards," Capati said.