MRT-3 to operate at reduced capacity as COVID-19 cases in depot rise to 127

Maris Federez   •   July 2, 2020   •   597

MANILA, Philippines — The MRT management will limit the number of trains in operation starting July 6.

This after a number of its personnel tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), bringing the total of positive cases to 127, a Department of Transportation (DOTr) advisory said.

Initial report said the 127 cases consist of 124 Sumitomo Depot personnel and 3 MRT-3 Depot personnel who will be placed under mandatory quarantine and medication.

DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan said that with the guidance of the IATF-EID and upon the advice of Sumitomo-MHI, MRT-3 will be able to continue operations, with the possibility of reducing capacity or with fewer trains.

“Sumitomo requested to discuss on a day-by-day basis the level of operations that they can sustain as results of the mass swab testing continue to be released. In the meantime, Sumitomo advised that they are able to continue with operations to service MRT-3’s tens of thousands of passengers, although at a reduced level,” said Usec Batan.

“While we try to do our best to keep the same maintenance performance through this week, we would like to discuss with DOTr MRT3 office day by day, how much maintenance level we would be able to keep, in view of the number of COVID-19 infected people,” said Masanori Honda of Sumitomo.

The advisory also said that “to augment MRT-3’s further reduced capacity due to the quarantine of some of its depot personnel, DOTr will be boosting its Bus Augmentation Program and EDSA Busway service, in coordination with the DOTr Road Sector, LTFRB, and MMDA.”

“Per guidance of the IATF-EID, additional measures and precautions will be taken during MRT-3’s reduced operations, including requiring full PPE for stations and depot personnel, limiting movement of depot personnel to their immediate areas of responsibility, increased disinfection activities, and heightened monitoring and screening of symptoms among all personnel,” the advisory further read.

Meanwhile, MRT reminds the public that it will suspend operation on July 4 and 5 to give way to their rail replacement activities. —(with details from Joan Nano) /mbmf

MMDA closes 14 U-turn slots on EDSA starting September 28

Marje Pelayo   •   September 28, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced the closure of 14 U-turn slots along EDSA beginning Monday (September 28).

The closure of U-turn slots will allow undisrupted operations of the EDSA Busway system between Monumento in Caloocan City and the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX).

This will cause, however, a heavy flow of traffic particularly in designated alternative routes, said MMDA EDSA traffic czar Edison Nebrija.

The agency is asking for the understanding and patience of commuters and motorists who will be affected by the new policy.

Nebrija assured, however, that they will do their best to ease the situation in Metro Manila’s main thoroughfare.

Specifically, the 14 U-turn slots to be closed beginning today are:

  • General Tinio
  • De Jesus Street / 8th stret left turning
  • General Malvar
  • Balintawak Market
  • Kaingin Road (in front of Nissan)
  • Congressional LRT Station
  • In front of PANORAMA
  • Corregidor intersection/Bansalangin
  • In front of Quezon City Academy
  • North Avenue (MRT-North Avenue)
  • Santolan/Boni Serrano (in front of Camp Crame)
  • Buendia (under the Kalayaan Flyover)
  • P. Celle
  • In front of Heritage Hotel (near Roxas Boulevard)

Meanwhile, here are the alternative routes assigned by MMDA:

  • Monumento Circle
  • Balintawak Cloverleaf
  • Quezon Avenue (under the flyover)
  • Boni Serrano (under Santolan Flyover)
  • Guadalupe
  • EDSA-Ayala Avenue Intersection
  • Magallanes (under the flyover)
  • Mall of Asia (MOA) Circle

There is no schedule yet as to when the rest of the EDSA U-turn slots will be closed.

Ang problema kasi namin, we’re also dependent on the availability of barriers. When will it come and when will it be laid down there,” he said.

“Sa ngayon, there’s no fixed deadline on this but rather we’re working on a timeline na sana matapos namin ito before the year ends,” he said. MNP (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

Mabigat na trapiko, asahan sa pagsasara ng ilang u-turn slot sa EDSA sa Lunes – MMDA

Robie de Guzman   •   September 25, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Nagpa-alala ang Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) sa mga motorista planuhing maigi ang biyahe dahil sa inaasahang mabigat na trapiko bunsod ng pagsasara ng ilang u-turn slots sa Lunes.

Labing-apat na u-turn slots sa kahabaan ng EDSA ang isasara upang bigyang daan ang tuluy-tuloy na pagbiyahe ng mga pampasaherong bus sa EDSA Busway sa ruta mula Monumento sa Caloocan City at Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX).

Una nang sinabi ng MMDA na unang isasara ang ikutan malapit sa MRT-3 North Avenue Station.

Ayon kay MMDA EDSA Traffic czar Bong Nebrija, hindi na sila maglalagay ng dagdag na mga tauhan para magmando ng trapiko bagaman inaasahan nila ang mabigat na daloy ng mga sasakyan sa Lunes lalo na sa bahagi ng Quezon Avenue.

“Well actually, hindi naman namin kailangang magdagdag ng tao, ‘no. So, we will use the available deployment that we have right now. Ang ano lang naman diyan ang ine-expect namin would be sa Quezon Avenue. Tututukan na lang ng operations team namin yan to assist the deployment on the ground,” ang pahayag ni Nebrija.

Pinapayuhan rin ang mga motorista na dumaan sa mga alternatibong ruta.

“Start looking for your best alternate route and practice it as much as possible para masigurado ninyo po na wala yung—hindi nakasarado yung nga inner roads na yan na balak ninyong daanan,” ang wika ni Nebrija.

Naniniwala rin ang opisyal na babalik sa normal ang lagay ng trapiko makalipas ang dalawang linggo.

Humihingi rin ang MMDA ng pang-unawa sa publiko para sa gagawing hakbang.

Wala pang takdang araw kung kailan isasara ang iba pang u-turn slots sa EDSA ngunit inaasahang ipatutupad ito kapag nakumpleto na ang paglalagay ng concrete barriers ng MMDA. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

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U-turn slots sa EDSA, isasara simula Sept. 28 – MMDA

Robie de Guzman   •   September 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Isasara na simula sa Lunes, Setyembre 28 ang ilang U-turn slot sa kahabaan ng EDSA para maseguro ang tuluy-tuloy na biyahe ng mga pampasaherong bus sa EDSA Busway.

Ayon kay Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) EDSA Traffic czar Edison “Bong” Nebrija, unang isasara ang U-turn slot sa EDSA-North Avenue malapit sa MRT-3.

Kabilang din sa mga nakatakdang isara ang U-turn slots sa pagitan ng Monumento at Balintawak, at pinapayuhan ang mga motorista na mag-U-turn sa Balintawak Cloverleaf at Monumento Circle.

Para naman sa mga dumaan sa U-turn slots sa pagitan ng Balintawak at Quezon Avenue, kailangan nang umikot gamit ang Cloverleaf at U-turn slot sa ilalim ng EDSA-Quezon Avenue flyover.

Habang ang. mga dumadaan sa U-turn slots sa Santolan at sa Roxas Boulevard ay maaaring dumaan sa ilalim ng Santolan Flyover sa Boni Serrano, sa Guadalupe, sa EDSA-Ayala Avenue Intersection, sa ilalim ng Magallanes Flyover at sa MOA Circle.

Layunin ng pagsasara ng U-turn slots na bigyang-daan ang tuluy-tuloy na biyahe ng mga pampasaherong bus sa EDSA Busway mula Monumento sa Caloocan City hanggang Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX).

Sinabi ni Nebrija na by-phase ang gagawin nilang pagpapatupad ng polisiya at wala pang petsa kung kailan isasara ang iba pang U-turn slots sa EDSA.

“Sa Lunes na yung sa MRT station. All the rest, titingnan pa namin kung kailan masasarado yung bus lane kasi maapektuhan lang naman yung U-turn once we close the busway with barricade. Eh ngayon, yan pa lang yung malalagyan namin ng mga barricade. So, yan lang muna yung masasarado,” ang wika ng opisyal.

Payo ng MMDA sa mga motorista, planuhing maigi ang biyahe at dumaan sa mga alternatibong ruta. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

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