THE Mandaue City Government proposed to Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama to use both sides of M. Logarta Ave. for vehicles coming from Mandaue to solve traffic congestion in the North Reclamation Area (NRA).
Based on the recommended scheme, there should be four lanes for vehicles going to Cebu City and Mandaue.
Mandaue Mayor Jonas Cortes presented the proposal during a meeting with Rama yesterday at 9 p.m.
In an interview, Cortes said there is no need to point a finger on who should be responsible for the traffic problem in NRA.
“There’s no need for finger-pointing. Ang ato ron ang pagtabang. Kaning traffic di gud ni moila og political boundaries (We should help each other. Traffic does not choose political boundaries). It’s affecting the whole Metro Cebu,” Cortes said.
Cortes said he does not want to create disagreement with Cebu City.
“Wa man ta makig-away (We do not want any misunderstanding with the other city). In fact, I’m willing to talk to them,” he said.
This came after Rama said that both cities should do adjustments to lessen traffic congestion due to a road-widening and concreting project on S. Osmeña Blvd.
Yesterday afternoon, Mandaue City Planning Officer Florentino Nimor Jr. showed a copy of the re-routing scheme that Cortes presented to Rama.
Vehicles coming from Mandaue and taking the road along Ouano Ave. will turn right to the road between the Aboitiz Football Field and SM Hypermarket, then to M. Logarta Ave. using the left lane going to Cebu City.
Vehicles from Subangdaku will take only the right lane of M. Logarta Ave. to Cebu City.
Vehicles coming from Cebu City passing Kaoshiung St. will proceed to S. Osmeña Blvd. going to Ouano Ave.
Vehicles coming from Juan Luna St. will go straight to S. Osmeña Blvd. then to Ouano Ave.
Nimor said Ouano Ave. has four lanes, the same with the M. Logarta Ave., both sides of which will be used by vehicles coming from Mandaue.
With four-lane each, traffic will be smooth between the two cities.
Cortes said the project is under Cebu City but Mandaue is badly affected considering that it is the gateway of all vehicles coming from the north, Lapu-Lapu City and Cordova.
He said he has talked with the Department of Public Works and Highways 7 Director Ador Canlas yesterday, who is amenable to the traffic rerouting that was first agreed during the meeting last Feb. 27.
For his part, Rama has set conditions before the S. Osmeña Blvd. will be opened to the vehicles.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) aims to finish the concreting project on S. Osmeña Blvd. next month. The project, which stretches 2.5 kms., started March last year.
In his news conference yesterday, Rama said he wants the City Government’s Parks and Playgrounds Commission to earth ball the remaining trees along the road.
“Right now, if we don’t prepare, death is being invited. Property damage is expected and we call it unimaginable personal injury,” he said.
Told that there is a cease-and-desist order (CDO) issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 to DPWH’s earth-balling of the remaining trees at S. Osmeña, Rama said it should no longer be considered.
“Forget about the CDO. There is a nuisance per se. Which is now higher? The public welfare, the general welfare or the CDO?” he said.
The CDO was issued by DENR after 79 trees from the road went missing when the first phase of the project was implemented a year ago.
Rama that time said t will not be DENR who will pay for the damage to properties, physical injuries or burial of those who will figure in vehicular accidents on S. Osmeña.
“As mayor, in behalf of exercising advance and proactive measure, I am now telling them (commission) to prepare for the earth-balling of the trees before the road is opened.
Rama said he is “very proud” of Councilor Nida Cabrera for calling on the earth-balling of the remaining trees so they will still live.
According to Arleigh Gesta of the Parks and Playgrounds Commission, there are more than 20 trees that are yet to be removed.
He said they will work on the earth-balling once the DENR lifts the CDO. Last week, he said, they have already sent a letter to DENR asking for a status on the trees.
Once the earth-balling activity will push through, Gesta said the trees will be transferred to the Senior Citizens Park and to the Plaza Independencia.
Aside from the earth-balling activities, the mayor wants the Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW) to install lighted and reflectorized dividers on the entire stretch.
He also asked DPWH to put up road signs, impose speed limit and establish rumble stripes.
Rama said he wants the Cebu Ports Authority to remove their fence. He said CPA head Edmund Tan has already agreed on the matter.
Rama said he wants all these in place by March 18.