DOST says monorail project back on track

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The Automated Guideway Transit System or AGT is being touted by the DOST as the first all-Filipino mass transport system to be developed locally. The awarding of contract to Miescor Builders to construct the 465-meter test tack in the University of the Philippines Diliman campus is part of this year?s celebration of the Metals and Engineering (M&E) Week, according to DOST?s Metals Industry Research and Development Center. Miescor is a construction and engineering company wholly owned by the power firm Meralco. In a statement sent to the media, the DOST did not reveal the cost of the contract. The AGTS will run on a track that curves from the Carlos P. Garcia Avenue near the CHEd (Commission on Higher Education) building to the area of the College of Arts building. The AGTS is one of DOST?s high-impact technology solutions and is the first among DOST?s several proposed public transportation systems for Metro Manila, DOST secretary Mario Montejo said. Composing the project team are engineers from DOST-MIRDC, UP Diliman, and the Project Management Engineering and Design Service Office (PMEDSO). The team aims to create a fully-automated, driverless electric transportation that travels on an elevated rail or guideway. The guideway will stand at an elevation of 6.1 meters supported by high-quality concrete material, while the train body will be composed of two adjoining coaches, each having 30-people capacity. Also, the coaches will roll on rubber tires instead of metal wheels to minimize track noise, and will have bogies to ensure comfort and stability. According to Jonathan Q. Puerto, officer-in-charge of the office of the deputy executive director of DOST-MIRDC, the test track in UP Diliman will help MIRDC to fine-tune the technology?s mechanisms and operation, which include speed, stability, brake distance and power, among others. ?If all goes as planned in the construction of the guideway, we will be able to initiate the testing in October,? said Puerto. Aside from being locally developed, the AGTS is environmentally sound as it is non-polluting, the DOST said. It is also reliable because it is fully automated, and safe because the elevated guideway will not get derailed or cause road accidents. The AGT also helps reduce traffic congestion and its economic costs, estimated at P140 billion annually. Some countries, such as the United States, Japan, Singapore and Canada, are currently using AGTS technology. ?If these countries can do it, so can the Philippines,? Montejo said. The AGTS project is monitored by the DOST?s Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development. ]]>

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