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LTFRB taps MMDA, IACT in enforcing UV Express pick-and-drop points

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 28th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) announced on Monday it will work with the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic (IACT) in enforcing the point-to-point transport operation of UV Express Service units.

Under Memorandum Circular 2019-025, the LTFRB abolished the two-kilometer radius from UV Express units’ endpoints in which they were allowed to load and unload passengers.  

The new circular, which amended a 2009 memo, was signed by LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra on May 16.

Delgra said the new policy was actually part of a 2005 memorandum which provides the original concept of UV Express Service, allowing them to only pick-up and drop off commuters at terminals specified in their franchise.

He said the Board implemented the regulation after noting that most UV Express drivers do not use the designated terminals to load and unload passengers between their endpoints. The time used in picking up and dropping off of passengers also slows down traffic.

“If you will notice kapag may sasakay sa loob ng UV, bababa yung buong sumasakay sa isang linya ng buong UV, bababa muna bago bababalik na naman sasakay, o kaya yung bababa ay nasa likod ng driver bababa muna bubuksan yung pintuan sa likod,” he said.

But a group of UV Express drivers opposed the policy, saying this will affect their income, and add to the daily burden of passengers.

“Hindi po pwede ‘yun sa mga pasahero gawa ng hindi naman po iisa ang pupuntahan ng pasahero. Paano kung SM fairview kami? Doon lahat bababa eh dito lang ang baba ng iba sa Philcoa,” said driver Ernesto Ebio.

“’Pag umaasa kami sa pila, wala kaming kikitain, kasi yung mga pasahero na galing sa pila merong bumababa ng malapit. Kapag nagkataon na merong sasakay para ‘yun yung pinaka extra naming [kita]” said driver Cesar Lipat.

Commuters, meanwhile, expressed varying reactions on the issue.

Some said the new policy will bring inconvenience to passengers while others lauded it as point-to-point transport operation will hasten their travel.

The LTFRB has advised affected passengers to use other available modes of public transportation to reach their destination.

LTFRB Chairman Delgra said they are now coordinating with the MMDA and IACT in relation with the apprehension of drivers who will fail to comply with the new policy.

Violators will be meted out with a fine of up to P15,000 for breach of franchise; their driver’s license may also be revoked for repeated offenses. (with details from Joan Nano)

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Metro Manila shake drill set on July 27 – MMDA

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 12th, 2019

FILE: PNP National Headquarters participated in the 1st Nationwide Simultaneous Earthquake Drill (NSED) on April 21, 2016. Response and Rescue operations were also done during the activity. (Photo: PNP FB Page)

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is set to hold an earthquake drill, dubbed as Metro Manila Shake Drill, on July 27.

MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia said this year’s shake drill will start as early as four in the morning, to be signaled by the sounding of an alarm.

“For this year, it will be done on a weekend and at almost the break of dawn when most Metro Manila residents are at home and asleep,” he said.

“We are doing this to prepare everyone to minimize damage and loss of life,” he added.

Garcia said they intentionally scheduled the drill very early in the morning so the public can participate.

Shake drills in the past years were done during daytime and even on rush hours, with last year leveling up to an unannounced, rush hour daytime drill.

“We want to test the response capabilities and preparedness of LGUs and the private sector as earthquake may occur anytime,” Garcia said.

The MMDA official added that during the shake drill, they will mobilize agency employees, Metro local government units and other groups to demonstrate their contingency plans in case strong earthquake hits the metropolis.

MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim, also the head of the Metro Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MMDRRMC), will visit city halls and designated emergency operation centers in the metro on the day of the drill.

Different emergency scenarios will also be staged at city hall offices, establishments, communities, businesses, and households.

“We expect more active and full participation of the private sector as government’s partner in disaster and emergency preparedness and response for Metro Manila,” said Garcia.

During the drill, the agency will also practice the deployment of personnel to designated emergency operation centers located at the four quadrants in Metro Manila.

The MMDA said the northern quadrant will use the Veterans Memorial Medical Center Golf Course as evacuation camp while the western quadrant will use the Intramuros Golf Course.

The eastern quadrant will use the LRT-2 Santolan Depot while the southern quadrant will use the Villamor Golf Course.

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LIST: Weekend road reblocking in Metro Manila

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 12th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has advised motorists to avoid several roads that will undergo repairs starting Friday evening.

In an advisory posted on its website, the MMDA said the following roads will undergo repairs from 11 p.m. Friday (July 12) until 5:00 a.m. on Monday (July 15):

SOUTHBOUND:

  • EDSA fronting Guzent Construction Equipment Sales and Rental to Culiat Bridge (1st lane from sidewalk)
  • Katipunan Ave. after P. Tuazon Blvd. (2nd lane from sidewalk)
  • EDSA Magallanes-Baclaran Bus Stop to Magallanes-Alabang Bus Stop (outer lane)
  • EDSA Eugenio Lopez – Sct. Borromeo (desilting and construction of manhole)
  • EDSA Quezon City between West Avenue and Philam Village (restoration/concreting works)

WESTBOUND:

  • Quirino Highway Kingfisher St. to Primerose St. (2nd lane from sidewalk)
  • General Luis St. Pascual St. to before Oriental Tin

NORTHBOUND & SOUTHBOUND:

  • C-5 Road fronting SM Aura Northbound (3rd lane from median) and SM Aura Southbound (2nd lane from median)


NORTHBOUND:

  • Regalado Ave. Mindanao Ave. Ext. to Quirino Highway (2nd lane from sidewalk)
  • EDSA after Aurora Blvd. (2nd lane from sidewalk)

The MMDA said all affected roads will be fully passable by 5 a.m. on Monday.

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MMDA to move U-turn slots along C5, Commonwealth Ave. this weekend

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, June 28th, 2019

Commonwealth Avenue

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has announced its plan to relocate two U-turn slots along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City and C5 Road-South Luzon Expressway (SLEx) this weekend.

The MMDA said that starting on Saturday (June 29), the U-turn slot located before the ramp or tollgate of C5-SLEx will be moved 300 meters away or in front of the Heritage Park Gate Mortuary in Taguig City.

MMDA general manager Jojo Garcia said the relocation is in preparation for the construction of a ramp for the C5 Cavite Expressway flyover along SLEx to connect the existing C5 Road in Taguig and C5 Extension in Pasay and Taguig.

“The flyover would cut the travel time from C5 Road going to southern areas in the metro like Las Piñas and Parañaque cities. But there is a need to build a ramp before the flyover could be opened,” said Garcia.

He said the adjustment will affect more than 8,000 vehicles traversing from Bonifacio Global City to Kalayaan and about 2,500 along SLEx.

Meanwhile, on Sunday (June 30) at 12 a.m., the U-turn slot along Commonwealth Avenue in front of CW Home Depot will be relocated to the area of Tandang Sora and Luzon Flyover.

On the same date, the Don Antonio U-turn slot will also be opened for light vehicles.

The movement is in preparation for President Rodrigo Duterte’s fourth State of the Nation Address in July and to give way to the construction of the tunnel guideway for the Metro Rail Transit line 7 (MRT-7).

Garcia said the relocation of the U-turn slot will affect about 10,000 vehicles.

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