MANILA -- Senator Grace Poe on Monday said the promised completion of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) - South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) connector road, more trains running in the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) and elevated walkways connecting buildings in urban centers would help ease traffic in Edsa.
There are things that can help traffic move faster in Edsa and Mega Manila -- the completion of the NLEX-SLEX connector road, which hopefully by January will be completed, Poe said during her speech at the BusinessWorld Industry 4.0 Summit.
The eight-kilometer elevated four-lane expressway connects the NLEX and SLEX through Segment 10 -- C3 Road in Caloocan City to Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) in Sta. Mesa, Manila -- and Skyway Stage 3.
The project is expected to be traversed by those going through Metro Manila from the north to the south and vice versa, which would effectively relocate a significant portion of vehicular traffic on Edsa.
Another big-impact project, she said, was increasing the number of trains running in the MRT-3, which is yet to be fully realized.
We've been promised many times that the trains that were imported from Dalian will be working soon, but out of the 16 trains, only two or three are working after five years, Poe said.
An PHP18-billion comprehensive rehabilitation of the MRT-3 is currently ongoing, which the Department of Transportation hopes would increase the ridership of the MRT-3 from the daily average of 320,000 to 650,000 by its expected completion on July 2021.
Sumitomo-MHI TESP, the contractor and maintenance provider of the MRT-3 project, will also overhaul all light rail vehicles of the rail transit, replace mainline tracks to increase its operating speeds, rehabilitate power and overhead catenary systems, among other upgrades.
Walkways, innovative transport systems
Aside from motorized mass transportation, the senator also highlighted conventional walkways as an effective solution to congestion in the metro.
If the government would mandate that, if you build certain buildings in a financial center or a business center, you should already have elevated walkways to connect to other buildings, Poe said.
She emphasized that these mass transport systems would be more effective than regulations on innovative transport systems such as transport network companies (TNC) like Grab and Angkas.
Yet the initial reaction of some people, such as the LTFRB (Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board), was to treat the TNCs like taxi operators and regulate their supply and price, Poe said.
The senator said passenger rights and innovations must be carefully balanced because nothing chokes an enterprise more than excessive regulation.
She added that the Philippines' mass transportation is not yet fully available, thus, the state is obligated to explore new modes of transportation for the sake of our commuters.
During the summit, experts from both the government and private sectors tackled the fourth industrial revolution brought by such innovative technologies as learning robots through artificial intelligence, Internet of things, 3D-printing, among others. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency