NEWS

AYALA Land Wins ITS South Auction

By: Lorenz S. Marasigan

PROPERTY developer Ayala Land Inc. topped the auction for the P4-billion contract to build and operate an intermodal terminal near the Food Terminal Inc. (FTI) Complex in Taguig City.

Tuesday’s opening of bids for the multibillion-peso Integrated Transport System (ITS) South Public-Private Partnership deal saw Ayala Land seeking an annual payment of P277.89 million. This is significantly lower than Filinvest Land Inc.’s bid that sought a P1-billion yearly subsidy to build and operate the facility.

Transportation Undersecretary Jose Perpetuo M. Lotilla said his camp is still happy with the turnout of the bidding, despite the parties seeking annual grantor’s payment, instead of offering premiums, as in other auctions.

“The government welcomes the lowest bidder, because that is the amount that will be paid by the state. I think we have a good deal with the amount that they are charging,” he said after the auction activities.

It did not come as a surprise, however, as the first auction for this kind of project was also met with such  participation. Megawide Construction Corp. bagged the P2.5-billion ITS Southwest Terminal deal earlier this year, seeking an annual grantor’s payment of P100 million.

“It depends on their projections. Remember that under the terms, they are supposed to provide certain number of slots. If they have other enhancements in mind, it is possible that their project cost is higher,” Lotilla explained, referring to the design of the terminal.

The winning bidder will take care of the design, construction and operations, and maintenance of the terminal for a concession period of 35 years.

The multibillion-peso project covers the construction of a terminal within a 4.7-hectare lot on the FTI compound in Taguig. It will connect passengers coming from the South, specifically the Batangas and Laguna areas, to other public-utility vehicles that are serving inner Metro Manila.

It also covers the construction of arrival and departure bays, public information systems, ticketing and baggage facilities and park-ride facilities.

Sought for comment, Ayala Land Spokesman Alfonso Javier D. Reyes said his group is elated with the turnout of the auction.

“This is an important project for us because we’re developing ARCA South, so we feel this a very strategic project and it’s a good project for the country to help declog Metro Manila; and so we’re very happy with the result of the bid today [Tuesday],”  he said in an interview.

ARCA South is an integrated mixed-use estate.

It is estimated that up to 4,000 buses and 160,000 passengers will feed into ITS South from the South Luzon Expressway every day.

“We like to view it as part of the whole, as it is right beside ARCA, it is very strategic,” Reyes said.

The transport agency aims to award the project sometime this August so construction can begin by May 2016. The terminal is set to open in October 2017.