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P2P bus riders continue to increase
by UNTV | Posted on Saturday, February 24th, 2018
A Poin-to-Point (P2P) bus commissioned by the Department of Transportation
MANILA, Philippines — There used to be 15 Metropolitan Rail Transit (MRT) trains operating the entire day. But now, only six to seven trains are able to serve the riding public.
This is why commuters have begun patronizing the once-ignored point-to-point (P2P) buses at the MRT North Avenue station.
At about nine in the morning on Friday, there were still several passengers who wanted to catch the last P2P bus trip.
“Kasi konti na lang yung bagon na umaandar na MRT, so yung pag-aantay ko nakapila dun, sakay na lang ako ng bus (There have been lesser train coaches that operate so, instead of spending a long time in line, I prefer to take the bus),” said Michael Cruz, a P2P passenger.
“Mas mabilis po kasi dito kaysa sa MRT, pipila ka pa, mas matagal yung pipila ka pa (This is faster than taking the MRT where you have to spend time waiting in line),” said Michelle Loi, another P2P regular.
“Based on the information we got, MRT passengers patronize our P2P buses because they are able to sit and it’s comfortable, and two, they get to their destination fast,” said Inter-Agency Council on Traffic (I-ACT) spokesperson Atty. Aileen Lizada
Based on the data from the Department of Transportation (DOTr), from February 1 to 22, the bus augmentation program was able to serve up to over 56,000 MRT passengers.
To date, there are only about 250,000 commuters who take the MRT trains daily.
This number is lower compared to that in 2017 which was at about 400,000 daily.
In February alone, there have been at least 11 incidents of MRT glitches.
The MRT management, meanwhile, assures that repair work among its trains has been underway as the spare parts that have been ordered by the DOTr have begun arriving.
The MRT management targets to have 15 trains operating in may after the conduct of a general maintenance.
The DOTR, on the other hand, said that several Japanese railway engineers will begin the review and audit on the entire MRT system, in line with the planned taking over Sumitomo as the new maintenance provided of the MRT.
The DOTr is also considering the P30 billion buy-out of the Metro Pacific investments corporation to improve the MRT system. — Joan Nano| UNTV News & Rescue
MANILA, Philippines — Aside from his previous order to file plunder complaints against nine former officials of the past administration on the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) Line-3 maintenance deal, President Rodrigo Duterte has also directed Solicitor General Jose Calida to look further into the matter for possible charges that can be filed against other personalities who were responsible for the current mess the said mass transit is in.
Plunder charges have been filed before the Office of the Ombudsman against former Transporation Secretary Jun Abaya and former Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas.
“I know there was already a case filed for BURI [Busan Universal Rail Inc.] but there could be other cases filed as well. There could be other new ones because apparently, the problem lies not just with BURI but the problem lies with the current owners of MRT-3,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.
With this development, the government is looking for a long-term solution to the said MRT-3 woes.
Based on what was discussed at Monday’s 23rd Cabinet meeting of President Duterte, this long-term solution comes in the form of arranging for a new owner of the MRT-3.
This is aside from the ones in charge of the maintenance and operation.
“The ownership of MRT-3 is a private corporation. So they are thinking of changing the owners because we’ve had many problems with the current owners,” said Roque.
Currently, the private company Metro Rail Transit Corporation owns MRT-3.
Another long-term solution that the government is looking into is the procurement of all necessary spare parts, and entering into a new contract with the MRT-3’s original maintenance contractor, Japan’s Sumimoto Corporation. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News and Rescue
FILE PHOTO: Traffic on a rainy day at MRT Boni Avenue station northbound
MANILA, Philippines — With P2.4 billion losses in 2014, the Philippines suffers up to P3.5 billion losses in revenues as a result of the daily traffic problems in Metro Manila this year.
Based on a study conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in 2017, worsening traffic problems in nearby provinces such as Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna have been contributory to the losses.
According to JICA, in 2015, the population in Metro Manila and in neighboring provinces reached 23.6 million. This number is expected to balloon to about 38.5 million by 2035.
JICA, meanwhile, warned that if the traffic woes are not resolved, the country will suffer more and more losses, which in turn will result to lesser funds for government projects and lower salary rate for ordinary workers.
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), on the other hand, said that they are continuously rooting around for solutions to traffic problems.
This is aside from the Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) construction of new roads.
“Yung traffic naman hindi na nabuild yan in one day, overnight. It’s 30 or 40 years ago. Hindi nagkaroon ng planning, nung napuno saka tayo nag plano. Dumadami ang kotse walang kalye,” said jose MMDA general manager Arthuro “Jojo” Garcia.
(The traffic problem did not happen in a day or overnight. It’s 30 or 40 years ago. There was no planning. Only when it got crowded did we start planning. Cars continue to increase but there are not enough roads.)
The MMDA also reiterated what big help it would be in easing traffic woes if motorists were disciplined.
“Ang short term talaga natin dito (The short-term plan) really is discipline and enforcement of the law. We cannot do anything about it. Sa infrastructure puro long-term yan (As for infrastructures, those are for long-term)” said Garcia.
According to the transportation department, they are fast-tracking the construction of infrastructure projects in Metro Manila, which includes the Taguig-Paranaque Integrated Transport Exchange, South East Metro Manila Expressway, and other railway projects. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue
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