Bunye: Decongesting Edsa

Speaking Out

THE Metro Manila Development Authority temporarily postponed implementation of its proposed "Edsa driver only rush hour ban" pending further consultation with the Metro Manila mayors. A Metro mayor, however, already indicated that he is not willing to go along with the experiment. And even if majority of the mayors approve it, he will not implement the same in his jurisdiction.

The short-lived trial run was mostly jeered by motorists. At the same time, however, it triggered an avalanche of suggestions on how to solve the Edsa gridlock.

Let me share some readers' suggestions. The suggestions are slightly edited for brevity.

"There is a simple solution to minimize traffic in Edsa. Implement the Edsa shuttle scheme, which will provide two lanes on both sides of Edsa for private cars only willing to pay for time costs money principle.. so as to be able to travel certain sections of Edsa at 50 kmph..." -- Ding J. Wenceslao

"That scheme (Edsa shuttle scheme) was successfully implemented in many world cities. In some, a congestion tax is enforced during peak traffic hours. In another Asian city, motorcyclists are confined to use the extreme left or extreme right as the road rules apply as in the case of Ho Chi Minh City." -- Abraham A. Amores Sr.

"To me, the only long term and most viable solution to the nagging traffic problem is the improvement of our MRT system. It is not an impossible task given that the infrastructures are already in place and the new trains are here already." -- Greg Suarez

"A good public transport system is the only solution to the traffic problem in Metro Manila. Second, fix and maintain the roads. Flooding and potholes slow down traffic." -- Maria Ramona Santiago

"Build condo-like buildings for the informal settlers who have jobs and can pay the rentals. Bring the jobless ones, they comprise the majority of them, back to where they came from and let them plant anything for their source of livelihood. Rid EDSA of big buses. Start with the colorum ones." -- Belle Montesa

"Remove the power steering mechanism of the buses. This way they travel like trains and stay on one lane. Ang titigas talaga ng ulo eh." -- Reynan Cañete

"Can we take a look at the skyway which will link South and North expressways?" -- Romy Esporlas

"Unclog side streets which can provide alternate routes for motorists." -- Alberto A. Villanueva

"Establish different working hours for government offices and private establishments. E.g. government offices can start 7:30 while private establishments can start at 9:30." -- Nacho Rivera

Whatever the case, the situation is expected to get worse before it gets better. And regardless of the solution chosen, some pain or sacrifice will be involved.

The question is: Will you and I be willing and able to bear part of the burden for the common good?

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