DAVAO City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio encouraged jeepney drivers to be part of the modernized transport system of the city through cooperating with the High Priority Bus System (HPBS) in partnership with the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Duterte-Carpio, in her State of the City Address (Soca), stated that the ADB will help the city shift from outdated and expensive public utility jeepneys to a more convenient, cleaner, and faster mode of transportation.
“We are working with the ADB for a high priority bus system medyo layo-layo na ang naabot ani nga plano in fact duna nay mga rota ang kani nga plan, makita na ninyo nga medyo workable na ang plano (We are working with the ADB for the HPB and we have already done many things, in fact routes are already included. We can see that the plan is already workable),” she said.
Duterte-Carpio clarified that the jeepneys will not be phased out.
Drivers are given option to transfer into feeder routes which will not be occupied by the bus. Other than that, Duterte-Carpio added that drivers who will not agree to be transferred on the feeder routes can opt to be investors of HPBS, or be bus drivers.
“I want our drivers to be investors of the HPBS, so that they will not be poor and sickly in working according to their financier for the operators, we invite them to be businessmen, this is what I emphasized to the ABD and transportation committee,” she said.
She added that the ADB is set to make their presentation of the project by November and the preparations for the infrastructure next year. The completion of the project is targeted on 2019.
Duterte-Carpio added that the city is also open to grant livelihood projects for jeepney drivers.
She is optimistic that the ADB project will pave way to a safer cleaner mass transport system that will require less travel time and less traffic congestion for the riding public.