MANILA, Philippines — Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) General Manager Jose Arturo said a total ban of provincial buses on EDSA is unlikely for now based on the current state of the Valenzuela Interim Terminal.
Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian joined MMDA and Land Transportation and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) officials at the inspection of Valenzuela Interim Terminal to assess if it can operate as a station for provincial buses starting August 15.
Aside from the ongoing construction works inside the terminal, MMDA noted several issues that need to be addressed.
Among these are the establishment of designated areas for provincial and city buses; management of queues for jeepneys, buses and UV Express vans that share the terminal; and completion of waiting sheds for passengers.
The MMDA has directed the Valenzuela City government to fast track the completion of the interim terminal within a month.
Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian said, “Give us a little bit more time. Di naman matagal na matagal, para maiayos lang yung terminal condition at tsaka yung mga sasalo na vehicles.”
Nevertheless, the MMDA will still implement on August 15 the ban of provincial buses on EDSA during rush hours.
This means that starting August 15, MMDA personnel will begin apprehending provincial buses on EDSA from 7am to 10am and 6pm to 9pm. Violators of the ordinance will be fined P2,000.
MMDA General Manager Jose Arturo Garcia said, “Yung dry run natin na kapag ang bus galing ng north, hanggang Cubao lang sila. Kapag galing south, hanggang Pasay. Pinahinga lang natin yung Cubao to Magallanes kasi ginagawa yung Shaw Boulevard.”
The Provincial Bus Operators Association has previously voiced opposition to the policy but they admit that they can do nothing if the MMDA will implement it. — Joan Nano