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MMDA awaits SC decision on fate of provincial bus ban

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Friday, May 31st, 2019

File photo: MMDA personnel accost provincial buses traversing Edsa. (Photo courtesy of MMDA)

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced on Wednesday that it leaves the fate of the proposed provincial bus ban up to the Supreme Court (SC).

MMDA traffic chief Bong Nebrija said in an interview that “it will depend on the order of the Court if they will tell us to scrap the policy or to hold its implementation.”

He added that they are just waiting for the court order.

Nebrija made the statement after several lawmakers filed separate petitions before the SC to stop the implementation of MMDA Regulation No. 19-002.

The order seeks to ban all provincial buses from plying along Edsa, which one of the petitioners, Albay Representative Joey Salceda, believes as “oppressive and unfair.”

Read: Salceda urges SC to halt provincial bus ban on EDSA

Nebrija further said that while there is still no court order, the MMDA will still push through with its preparations and their plans for the bus terminal closure, which the agency targets to implement in June.

“We’ll wait kung go or no go but we are still preparing, we’re still pushing with the plan. In the absence of a court order, we will push through with it,” he added.

The MMDA official believes that the impending implementation of the provincial bus ban on Edsa remains as one of the best alternatives to decongest Metro Manila roads.

Read: MMDA: Edsa bus ban one of the best options in decongesting Metro Manila

Nebrija, however, said that they still haven’t come up with a timeline from preparations to implementation as they are still yet to receive the policy guidelines from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

The MMDA had implemented a dry run of the bus ban in April but suspended it in less than a month.

Read: Provincial bus ban dry run suspended—MMDA

/mbmf

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Motorists experience heavier traffic due to Marcos Bridge closure

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 28th, 2019

Patience is a virtue. This is what motorists have to remind themselves every day in the next four months as they brave the heavy traffic from Quezon City to Rizal province.

This is because Marcos Bridge that connects Katipunan Avenue in Quezon City to Marikina City, and Taytay and Antipolo in Rizal has been closed since last Saturday (May 25) for its 4-month rehabilitation.

More than six thousand vehicles are estimated to pass by the bridge every hour.

This has affected a big number of UV express vans, jeepneys and other public utility vehicles that ply the Cogeo-Cubao route.

Drivers, whether public or private, had been complaining about the very heavy traffic that they had to endure every day.

There is also the mounting concern on the traffic that is expected to get worse as most schools will be opening their classes this coming Monday, June 3.

“Siyempre, kailangan lagi kaming aware sa kalsada prepare para doon sa bugso ng mga estudyante, then ‘yung bugso rin ng mga sasakyan. Yun ‘yung oras na kinakailangan namin mag-doble sikap para mapaluwang natin at maserbisyuhan natin ‘yung taong bayan [Of course, we need to be aware on the road, we have to prepare for the volume of students, the surge of vehicles. These are the times that we have to act double time to clear the roads, so we can better serve the public],” said Rodel Lucis, Quezon City Department of Public Order and Safety supervisor.

To address this concern, the government advises motorists to follow the alternative routes that the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has laid out and posted on its Facebook account.

Vehicles from Cubao to Antipolo Route:

  1. From Cubao, take Aurora Blvd. then right turn to Katipunan Ave., take service road of Libis underpass, left turn to Boni Serrano and take FVR Road straight to Macapagal Bridge then Marcos Highway to Antipolo
  2. From Cubao, right turn to 15th Avenue, then left turn to Boni Serrano, take FVR Road, straight to Macapagal Bridge then Marcos Highway to Antipolo

Trucks from Cubao to Antipolo Route:

  1. From Cubao, take Aurora Blvd, then right turn to Katipunan Avenue, take service road of Libis underpass, left turn to Boni Serrano, straight to FVR Road, take Macapagal Bridge then Sumulong Highway to Antipolo

Vehicles from Antipolo to Cubao Routes:

  1. From Antipolo, take Sumulong Highway then A. Bonifacio Avenue, straight ahead Aurora Blvd., to Cubao.
  2. From Antipolo, take Marcos Highway and right turn to Fernando Ave, then take A. Bonifacio Ave. straight ahead Aurora Blvd. to Cubao.
  3. From Antipolo, take Marcos Highway, take down ramp to Marcos Bridge service road then FVR road, straight ahead right turn to Katipunan Avenue, left turn to Aurora Boulevard, straight ahead to Cubao
  4. From Antipolo, take Marcos Highway then FVR Road straight ahead take Boni Serrano Ave., then right turn to 20th Ave., left turn to Aurora Blvd., to Cubao

Trucks from Antipolo to Cubao Route:

  1. From Antipolo, take Marcos Highway then FVR Road straight ahead, right turn to Katipunan Ave., left turn to Aurora Blvd. straight ahead to Cubao

(with reports from April Cenedoza) /mbmf

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Salceda urges SC to halt provincial bus ban on EDSA

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Monday, May 27th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Albay Second District Representative Joey Salceda on Monday urged the Supreme Court (SC) to halt a local policy banning provincial buses and terminals on Edsa, which is set to take effect in June.

Salceda filed his petition, asking the high court to issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the plan of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to enforce its Regulation No. 19-002, series of 2019 which seeks to prohibit all provincial buses from loading and unloading passengers along Edsa.

Under the resolution, local governments are urged to revoke or prohibit the issuance of business permits to all terminals and operators of public utility buses and vehicles on Edsa.

When this policy takes effect in June, provincial buses will be required to drop off passengers at government-constructed terminals like those in Parañaque, Valenzuela City and Sta. Rosa, Laguna, where they could transfer to city vehicles. 

The MMDA earlier said the impending policy is one of the best alternatives to decongest Metro Manila roads.

READ: MMDA: EDSA bus ban one of the best options in decongesting Metro Manila

But Salceda argued in his petition that the policy will not solve traffic congestion on one of the country’s busiest roads. He said only around 3,300 provincial buses use Edsa on a daily basis, citing data from the Philippine Statistics Authority.

He further stated that the MMDA overstepped its authority and violated the franchises of affected buses as granted by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, as well as the lease agreements between bus operators and terminal owners.

Salceda added that the regulation is “oppressive and unfair” to the public as the new routes will only add burden to commuters.

This is the second petition filed before the SC, seeking to stop the MMDA’s bus ban on Edsa.

In April, the AKO-Bicol party-list also asked the high court for a TRO on the said policy, arguing that the MMDA and the Metro Manila Council have no authority to implement the ban as they were not authorized to enact ordinances or approve resolutions.

The group added that these are acts of police power that only individual local government units can exercise.

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LTFRB, LTO probe vehicle accident in Atimonan, Quezon

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 8th, 2019

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and the Land Transportation Office (LTO) are now investigating on the fatal road accident in Atimonan, Quezon on Monday (May 6).

READ: 3 killed, 73 injured in road accident in Atimonan, Quezon

Three were killed while 73 were injured when an AMV Travel and Tour Bus collided with a 10-wheeler truck along Maharlika Highway diversion road.

Based on the initial investigation, “human error” is the cause of the accident.

The LTFRB also discovered that the tour bus was traversing in an authorized route. They will also file a preventive suspension order against the other bus units of AMV Travel and Tours.(with reports from Joan Nano)

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