Metro Rail Transit line 3 (MRT-3) has increased its train speed following the completion of its rail replacement project ahead of schedule.
The train operating speed reached 60 kilometers per hour (kph) on December 7, cutting the average time between trains to only 3.5 to 4 minutes, from the previous 8 to 9.5 minutes at 30kph with 20 trains.
Thus, travel time from North avenue station to Taft avenue was shortened by 25 to 50 minutes, from the previous 1 hour and 15 minutes.
The improving train speed is a result of the rail replacement works in the rail line, as part of the MRT-3’s massive rehabilitation program that is being implemented by its maintenance provider Sumitomo-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries from Japan.
The rail replacement works were finished last September, several months ahead of the scheduled completion in February 2021.
The rail line has been gradually increasing its train operating speed since it embarked on a massive rehabilitation, from 30kph to 40kph in October, and 50kph in November 2020.
MRT-3 trains can now travel from North Avenue station to Shaw Boulevard station (both bounds) with a speed of 60kph, and from Shaw Boulevard station to Taft Avenue station (both bounds) with a speed of 55kph.
“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,” Michael Capati, MRT-3 director for operations, said.
The last time the MRT-3 was able to run at 60kph was in September 2013.