Baguio Traffic and the irregular heartbeat

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By Evangeline Murillo

Tea For Two

Thursday, June 5, 2014


PLYING daily the Magsaysay Road going to the city is a horrible experience, but we have gotten used to its hair-raising, record-breaking tediousness! Still, every daily experience is a new scene different from yesterday. One day you have three rows of vehicles inside one lane, on another day, believe it or not, you can have four, with one part occupied by a line of motorcycles! To add to the injury of emotional turmoil, the traffic lights change so fast a car can only travel the distance of two vehicles before the lights change again. Then, we are all at a standstill. A sensitive heart can have an infarct trying to squeeze through the labyrinth of cars, buses, jeepneys and motorcycles without scratching a part of his vehicle. A daily dose of this experience at times can be heart stopping or arrhythmia causing. Thanks God no one has yet been reported to have caused a traffic breakdown because of a heart attack in this over busy traffic site.

Adding to the traffic mess, is the P. Burgos Road that’s used as jeepney station and always has a jeepney or more, to back up, to move forward or to park, resulting again, in a stand still situation for the travelers of this once residential road. Perhaps it’s time to make this a one way street and time too, to look for other jeepney station areas away from P. Burgos. Adding to the mess is of course, the parked cars and vehicles on one side of P. Burgos Road. Residents and business owners in this area feel free to park their vehicles of all sizes on one side of the road making the motorist’s area narrower and narrower. As a result, a driver has to inch his way through the line of motionless cars or go on motionless mode himself!

Another traffic site which spells pandemonium is the Bokawkan, Naguilian and Abanao area. When it’s time to go home from the office, this site is simply nerve-wrecking! This is where traffic lanes criss-cross creating not only three but four or five rows of vehicles fighting for territorial rights. And we thought our Spratleys islands are the only ones with this problem?

Don’t forget the BGH circle, where traffic has a personality disorder. It’s difficult to understand where you can find the answer to your simple queries for direction. At one time you’re on the right track, at another time, you’re accused of using the wrong lane. The overpass has not really helped much. Is it in the wrong location we wonder? Or is traffic simply horrendous and impossible in Baguio City?

It’s a problem our city officials have to address and soon! Our city has to see the dawn of better governance and this time, we may have the right people to solve difficult situations. More power Baguio!

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on June 06, 2014.

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