One of the busiest intersections I’ve encountered when I’m driving in Cebu City is the T-intersection at M. L. Quezon Ave., Mandaue City and Gov. M. Cuenco Ave., Talamban, Cebu City because this intersection has no traffic lights. Despite the strict leadership of Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) chairman Rico Rey “Koko” Holganza, traffic enforcers are nowhere to be found during peak hours in the morning and early evening.

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama is somehow on track in his war against traffic since under his leadership the CCTO is upgrading its traffic lights system in the city’s 45 intersections for a total cost of P480 million. The Sydney Coordinated Adaptive Traffic System (Scats) that has been in service for 34 years will be replaced with the latest adaptive traffic system that is the most advanced technology in the world, according to the supplier Triune Electronics Systems Inc. Wow!

SunStar Cebu has reported that Phase 1 of Cebu City’s traffic lights upgrade has covered the 18 intersections on General Maxilom Avenue, Serging Osmeña Boulevard and Colon Street, among others, at a cost of P232 million, and it was completed in the last quarter of 2021. The Phase 2 will cover the 27 intersections (not yet identified) at the cost of P248 million. I wish CCTO Chairman Holganza would consider installing one of these latest adaptive traffic systems at the intersection of M. L. Quezon Avenue and Gov. Cuenco Avenue in Nasipit, Talamban, Cebu City.

Installing traffic lights in all the intersections in Cebu City will reduce the manpower of CCTO, and this would mean savings for the City. Chairman Holganza then may start terminating the lazy traffic enforcers. I admire the diligent traffic enforcers who still man the traffic lights-less intersections even on rainy days.

According to the technical specifications, the traffic signal equipment is composed of a light-emitting diode or LED traffic signal, LED pedestrian signal, adaptive vehicle countdown timers, vehicle detectors and traffic controller, among others.

In a statement to SunStar Cebu, Timothy Ong of Triune Electronics said “Cebu City’s adaptive traffic system is the latest and most advanced technology that uses adaptive countdown timers, which can change its display value depending on the computation of the main computer box, within the Philippines and even first world countries abroad. It’s only Cebu City that has this kind of latest technology.”

We could only hope that this new adaptive traffic lights signal systems would last long and could facilitate and help educate the motorists on our traffic laws, rules and regulations. In the absence of a traffic lights system and traffic enforcer at the T-intersection on Gov. Cuenco Avenue and M. L. Quezon Avenue, the junction box markings on the pavement are useless since bikers and motorists stop right in the middle of the intersection.

Perhaps some motorists and bikers think that the box junction markings on the pavement at the intersection are only an adornment. They’re not. The markings on the pavement on the junction or intersection prohibit motorists and bikers from stopping on them to prevent obstruction. Motorists and bikers should stop or yield on the solid white pavement markings before the box junction.

A box junction is a road traffic control measure designed to prevent congestion and gridlock at junctions. The surface of the junction is typically marked with a yellow criss-cross grid of diagonal painted lines (or only two lines crossing each other in the box), and vehicles may not enter the area so marked unless their exit from the junction is clear, or they are intending to turn and are prevented from doing so by oncoming traffic, or other vehicles on the box waiting to turn, according to Wikipedia.