Mayors of the 17 cities that compose the metropolis gathered last week to approve resolutions that aim to further reduce traffic-causing elements and events that occur in Metro Manila.
Known as the Metro Manila Council (MMC) – Metropolitan Manila Development Authority’s (MMDA) governing board and policy-making body unanimously decided to approve resolutions regarding three major issues – provincial bus terminals in the metro, tricycles and pedicabs using major roads and the closure of highways for fun runs.
“They approved the removal of bus terminals in EDSA. It is now up to them (mayors) to prepare for the eventual removal. This will be in Pasay and Quezon City. Although the response will not be done immediately, we told them to prepare pending the request of the emergency powers (that will be given to President Duterte) since the permits are issued by the mayors,” said MMDA OIC Emerson Carlos.
Mayor Herbert Bautista of Quezon City and Mayor Antonino Calixto of Pasay City, the two mayors whose cities have the most number of provincial bus terminals, approved the resolution in line with President Duterte’s directive.
MMDA records indicate that there are 85 provincial bus companies in Metro Manila, 46 of them have terminals situated along EDSA and Taft Avenue.
This has led to 3,300 provincial buses adding to the daily vehicular traffic in Metro Manila.
As provincial companies prepare for their relocation, the MMDA will enforce the ‘Nose In, Nose Out’ policy for all provincial buses exiting their terminals along EDSA.
Meanwhile the newly signed resolution also bans the addition of new provincial bus terminals in Metro Manila.
The MMC was also unanimous in its decision to regulate the staging of fun runs, especially along the stretch of Roxas Boulevard, after learning that most of these marathons were being used as fund-raising events.
"Halos every weekend, may mga fun run sa Roxas Boulevard. In fact, nakakagulat nga, tinatanong namin, anong purpose ng fun run, minsan magugulat ka birthday daw ng isang ganitong tao, nakakagulat din and at the same time sayang naman yung daan na yun instead na magamit ng maraming tao e nagagamit para kumita ang isang organisasyon," explained Carlos.
[There’s a fun run almost every weekend on Roxas Boulevard. When we asked for the purpose of the fun run, we were surprised to learn that it was simply because it was just someone’s birthday. It’s shocking and a waste of our resources when instead of so many more people using the road, it gets reserved for only a group of people for money-making purposes.]
"It has been observed by the MMDA that the foregoing events are frequently requested to be held in Roxas Boulevard by various organizers who require substantial fees from the participants and or audience and thus to the nature of business," the resolution said.
The MMC’s resolution will now only allow fun runs on two Sundays of each month using only one direction of the road leaving the other open for motorists and that it must be cleared by 7AM.
Finally, the MMC approved the resolution banning tricycles and pedicabs from using 15 major roads including 10 radial roads, Roxas Boulevard, Five Circumferential Roads (Recto, Taft, Araneta, C4 and C5) and EDSA.
"Nakuha na natin ang support ng mga mayors dito. Bawal na ang mga ticycles dyan according to local government units, ibig sabihin yung mga prangkisa ng mga tricycles tatanggalan nila ng ruta along these 15 major highways," said Carlos.
[We finally got the support of the mayors. Tricycles are banned according to local government units. That means routes along 15 major highways will be removed from the franchises of these tricycles.]
"A proliferation of tricycles, pedicabs, "kuligligs, pushcarts and ambulant vendors has been observed by the MMDA in major thoroughfares in Metro Manila which poses a risk to the lives and limbs of its drivers, passengers, owners and peddlers and likewise significantly contributes to traffic congestion," the resolution stated.
Of all the cities, Manila and Pasay have the most tricycles and pedicabs on the road.
Violators will be fined Php 500 and their tricycles and pedicabs impounded.