Provincial bus ban along EDSA starts Wednesday: MMDA

MANILAThe Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will start its implementation of the provincial bus ban along Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA) during rush hours on Wednesday (August 15).

Under this policy, all provincial buses will not be allowed to traverse EDSA from Pasay City up to Cubao, Quezon City from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. during weekdays. Violators will be fined PHP2,000.

The MMDA expects this would help ease vehicular volume along EDSA once implemented.

We are expecting to reduce traffic tomorrow. Ang mababawas na provincial buses almost 2,000 around 25 percent of the bus population (The provincial buses will be lessened by almost 2,000 around 25 percent of the bus population), Bong Nebrija, commander of the MMDA's Task Force Special Operations, said in a text message to reporters Tuesday.

Provincial buses from the south may use the Southwest Integrated Provincial Terminal (SWIPT) located along Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard in Pasay City.

The MMDA is eyeing buses coming from the north to use the integrated terminal in Valenzuela. The agency earlier said the facility has yet to comply with the standards of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) such as installation of waiting sheds, comfort rooms, and walkways, among others, before provincial buses can fully utilize it.

As of August 14, the MMDA has flagged down a total of 934 violators during its dry run of the provincial bus ban which started on July 24.

The provincial bus ban is in line with the intermodal transport system being proposed by the DOTr to ease traffic congestion in Metro Manila. Under the system, provincial buses will no longer be allowed to traverse along major roads in Metro Manila. Terminals will be installed outside the metropolis as these buses and passengers will be linked to other modes of public transportation, such as city buses, jeepneys, and taxis.

The MMDA will also conduct its dry run on the high occupancy vehicle lanes (HOVL) along EDSA on Wednesday.

Under the traffic scheme, vehicles with two or more occupants, including the driver, would be able to pass through EDSA using the HOVL. The dry-run will be held from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The agency hopes that this will encourage carpooling among motorists as a means to further ease the traffic congestion in Metro Manila.

Around 60-70 percent of vehicles that pass along Edsa have only single occupants, according to data from the MMDA.

There are 367,738 vehicles traversing the major artery daily, 67 percent of which are private vehicles based on EDSA's annual average daily traffic on 2017. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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