Heads up motorists, NLEX Corporation just announced that they will bring back cash lanes on the expressway.
According to a report by GMA News TV, Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation Chief Communication Officer Romulo Quimbo said that cash lanes are to reopen in the toll road to decongest the toll plazas.
“Maglalagay na po tayo ng mga cash lane. Ibabalik natin ang cash lane. Magtatalaga na tayo ng cash lanes, halimbawa sa Balintawak toll plaza ‘yun pong malalaki maglalagay ulit tayo ng cash lane doon,” said Quimbo.
[We will put in cash lanes. We will return the cash lane. On big toll plazas like Balintawak, we will put cash lanes there again]
Quimbo added that both the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Office of the President want the cash lanes back on NLEX. Another option that they are looking into is by having both RFID and cash lanes available, which used to be the norm before.
NLEX Corporation's decision to bring back cash lanes comes right after the League of Municipalities Bulacan released a manifesto expressing their frustration with NLEX's faulty RFID system. Not only did they express support with Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian's move to sanction NLEX, but they also urged the company to temporarily bring back cash lanes on the expressway to alleviate traffic congestion.
Quimbo did not mention which toll plazas will have cash lanes. But given that the RFID mess is still not resolved, it looks like the company may have to put them up in areas that constantly experience heavy traffic.
The move is a welcome change amid the constant traffic the expressway is experiencing. But what will become of the Department of Transportation's (DOTr) Department Order No. 2020-012 - which mentioned that all expressways must implement cashless toll transactions? Will there be changes or revisions in the future? Or does this mean the system will revert to both having cash lanes and RFID lanes available for motorists to use?