Tumulak: No to skywalks’ removal

Dave Tumulak (File photo)
Dave Tumulak (File photo)

A FORMER political ally of Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama is against his plan to remove the remaining skywalks within the city, deeming underground pedestrian crossings not feasible.

Basak Barangay Captain Dave Tumulak publicly expressed his opposition through a post on his Facebook account last Wednesday, March 20, 2024.

Tumulak, a former city councilor who ran against Rama in the 2022 mayoral elections, urged the mayor not to include the skywalks in his barangay, arguing that children going to school use the structures to avoid the busy street below.

He is referring to the skywalk located near the University of San Jose-Recoletos Basak campus and the skywalk near the Don Vicente Rama Memorial Elementary School.

He said the City Government should instead enhance the skywalks’ utility by implementing safety measures like installing lights, conducting regular maintenance and adding elevators, if feasible.

He said his office encourages residents and pedestrians to use the skywalks for their safety and convenience.

Tumulak also said removing the skywalks to build underground pedestrian crossings will require closing N. Bacalso Ave., one of only two highways for southbound motorists with the other being the Cebu South Coastal Road.

On Thursday, March 21, Rama reiterated his stand that skywalks should be removed, deeming the structures not user-friendly to persons with disability and senior citizens.

Rama advised officials who opposed and criticized his plans to take some time to observe the state of these structures.

He pointed out that only a few pedestrians use skywalks, which have become homes to mendicants.

Rama first expressed his intention to remove all remaining skywalks in the city last March 14 over Cebu City Hall’s online program “Ingna’ng Mayor,” where he expressed his preference for underground pedestrian crossings.

Fourteen skywalks remain in Cebu City — seven in the south district and seven in the north district — following the removal of two along Osmeña Blvd. last February to make way for the implementation of the first package of the Cebu Bus Rapid Transit project.

Majority of the skywalks are situated near schools. (AML)

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