Cory-era traffic scheme eyed

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Odd-even car plates plan seen freeing up Metro roads

PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino 3rd on Thursday said a plan to revert to a Cory-era traffic control scheme is among the options considered to address the seemingly hopeless gridlock in Metro Manila’s thoroughfares.

Speaking at the Rizal Technological University in Mandaluyong City, the President said officials are set to present to him different plans on how to ease congestion, among which a plan to reintroduce the Odd-Even scheme, which was implemented in the early 1990s when his mother, Corazon “Cory” Aquino, was President.

“Malapit nang ipresenta sa akin ang iba’t ibang plano para maibsan ang siksikan ng mga sasakyan. Ang akin po: Ang pinakaradikal dito ay hatiin ang bilang ng bumibiyaheng sasakyan–salitan ang pagbabaybay ng odd at even na plaka sa ating mga kalsada kada linggo [Different plans on how to ease congestion of vehicles will soon be presented to me.


For me, the most radical among the plans is a scheme that would split the number of vehicles on the road–an odd-even scheme that would be implemented each week],” Aquino added.

This radical approach, according to the President, while may be unwelcome to many motorists, will greatly reduce traffic congestion and ease up the flow of vehicles along notorious chokepoints in Metro Manila.

“Pihadong luluwag ang trapik dahil kalahati ng sasakyan ang mawawala, pero sigurado pong marami na namang aalma dahil hindi magagamit ang kotse nila [I’m sure traffic will ease up as half of the vehicles will be off the road, but I’m also sure that many will resist because they won’t be able to use their vehicles],” he said, adding that such opposition by some sectors are expected “limitations” to the plan.

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the President has directed Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras to hold consultations with various stakeholders on the government’s traffic management plan.

A study conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in 2014 warned that the government can lose up to P6 billion a day by 2030 if the traffic congestion will not be addressed.

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya recently drew flak–but later apologized– for calling the Metro Manila traffic situation as “not fatal.”

The horrendous jam also prompted calls for Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Francis Tolentino’s resignation.

Old solution
The odd-even scheme was first implemented in 1990 as a radical solution to traffic congestion when Oscar Orbos was appointed Transportation secretary vice Rainerio Reyes who drew heavy fire for the same problem that the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is facing today.

The scheme–coupled with the introduction of Yellow Bus Lanes along EDSA–was however half-successful. A former transport industry stalwart at the time told The Manila Times that Orbos’ failure to solve the traffic problem prompted Malacañang to save him from public condemnation by moving him to the Palace as executive secretary. Orbos– who was then being primed to run for higher office in 1992–was eventually sacked from the first Aquino administration.

Incidentally, Coloma was Orbos’s undersecretary at the DOTC before he was also moved to Malacañang to head the Presidential Management Staff.

The odd-even scheme was modified several times over during the Ramos administration until the traffic control system at present–the Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program (UVVRP), better known as the “number coding” scheme–was adopted by the MMDA in 1996.

Under this scheme, both public and private vehicles are banned between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. The MMDA temporarily suspended the UVVRP in early 2003 but the resulting mayhem forced authorities to reintroduce the scheme.

President Aquino noted how most Filipinos supposedly refuse to be part of the solution to the traffic congestion

Dilemma
“Ganyan po ang kinakaharap natin. Sa paglaban sa baha, hanggang paglalatag ng imprastruktura, at maging sa pagsasaayos ng trapiko, ang namamayaning kaisipan ay ganito: ‘Okay kami sa solusyon, okay kami sa konstruksiyon, huwag lang kami ang maiipit sa implementasyon [That’s what we’re facing today. In solving flooding and in building infrastructure and even in putting order to traffic, the prevailing mindset is: ‘We’re okay with the solution provided we don’t get inconvenienced when it gets implemented],” Aquino said.

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13 Comments

  1. Muriel Magtanggol on

    Huwag niyong nakawin ang pera ng bayan…yan ang solution sa problema.
    Kung hindi niyo ninanakaw, marami sana tayong tren. Maayos lahat ng takbo, marami na tayong linya. Kung hindi kayo corrupt, ayos din sana ang bus system, mababawasan ang jeepney, tricycle, walang mga colorum at may kaayusan ang systema, may jaywalking or bus stop na napasusunod.
    Pati mga kalye, skyway, kahit PNR at pasig river ferry, ayos sana- KUNG HINDI KAYO NAGNANAKAW.
    Ngayon, puro band aid remedy ang naiisip niyo.

    Umalis kayo sa pwestong hindi niyo kaya at ipa ubaya sa mga professional. May mga qualified na civil servants, ayaw niyong gamitin. Gusto niyo puro kamag anak, kabarilan, kainumang mga inutil at bobo.

  2. apolonio reyes on

    Monstrous Problems needs Draconian Solutions, that is we have to bite the bullets.

    Finland’s economy was worse than that of Greece, now bankrupt, but Finland’s President made a Draconian Decision. He made an EO 1) That orders Finland’s Central Bank not to help Bankrupt Greedy Banks to RECOVER. 2) Jail all Greedy officials of banks that closed and 3) To ban all Finish Citizens to bring Dollars out of the country. In five years, Finland recovered and now one of the outstanding members of the European Union ( As per Internet )

    During at the Senate hearing of Sen. Bam Aquino, it was found out that due to MONSTROUES TRAFFIC, we are losing P6.4B a day, this is twice if our OFW will do the NO REMITTANCE DAY that is if Lolong Lina and Pnoy will enforce taxing the balikbayan box.
    I believed that the best thing Pnoy can do in his 306 days in office to ease up Traffic is enforce the ODD-EVEN Scheme as proposed by then Traffic Czar Romeo Maganto from 7 am-10 am and 4pm-7pm or RUSH HOURS and was turn down immediately by then MMDA Chair Jojemar Binay without even trying, that is if my memory serves me right. Enforcing the ODD-EVEN Scheme will give us many benefits such as ;
    1) This will ease up the flow of traffic and Public Utility Vehicles can make more turn around and carry more passengers, earn more with less fuel cost.
    2) It will encourage Carpooling saves also on fuel by private car owners.
    3) It will help reduced air pollutions that makes many sick of lung problems.
    4) It will save on FUEL Cost and loss of time by employees.
    In the meantime DOTC cannot solve the problem of public transportations like LRT and MRT which was neglected for a long five years by the Pnoy administration, let us bite the BULLET and wait for the next administration to DO IT. So let US VOTE WISELY AND CORRECTLY. DI BA BAYAN?

  3. Marami na rin ang napuntahan kong ibat-ibang mauunlad na bansa pero ang napansin ko hindi naging problema sa kanila ang Traffic dahil sa dalawang bagay. Una ay ang DISCIPLINA at ang pangalawa ay ang Public Transport system. Sa Japan halos lahat ng tao ay gumagamit ng TREN, at ang sasakyan papuntang station ay bisikleta na may angkop na paradahan. Ganoon din dito sa America, Ang kanilang Tren ang kanilang inaasahan. Lalo’t malalayo ang lugar ng trabaho dito sa AMERICA. Diyan sa atin wala sana yang problemang yan kung pinagtuunan ng ating Gobierno ang Mass Transit System. Sa metro-Manila , kung hindi sana pinabayan ang MRT-LRT system sanay wala tayong problema ngayon. Ang nangyari malaki ang pundo na nilaan pero
    hindi sa sa tamang lugar napunta. MALAS LANG TAYO DAHIL THIS IS THE MOST CORRUPT ADMINISTRATION, the Philippines ever had. Kung noong panahon ni Marcos, hindi mangyayari ito. Siya lamang ang nakapagpatupad ng DISCIPLINA sa
    ating bansa. Si ROXAS at ABAYA ba naman ang napwesto diyan e anong nangyari.
    Yan ang napala natin sa TUWID NA DAAN, KKK lang ang nakikinabang.. Ngayon sinisigaw pa nila na dapat daw tangkilikin natin ang mga taong magpapatuloy ng Tuwid na Daan. Kung pakikinggan natin ito, para tayong kumuha ng MARTILYO
    na pinukpok sa sarili nating ULO. Let us implement real DISCIPLINE among our people, but this has to start from our elected and appointed leaders. Itigil na ninyo ang pagkakamal sa yaman ng bayan at ituon ninyo sa servicio publico ang natitira ninyong kabaitan. ABAYA tigilan mo na yang kayabanggan mo, Ayusin mo ang departamento na nasa iyong pamamahal.

  4. There’s should be no more window hours, a vehicle with plate no. ending in 1 or 2 should be banned from the streets the whole of Monday, and so on…but not the odd even scheme…

  5. Simple those old vehicles more than 15 years, jeeps, cars, buses and trucks should be eliminated from the road. Beside their contribution from heavy traffic congestion this vehicles causes heavy pollution.

  6. Bonifacio Claudio on

    NO PROBLEM sa mga MAYAYAMAN AT MAYKAYA, kasi 2-4 ang kanilang pribadong sasakyan na 2 ang odd nos & 2 din ang even nos. Ganoon din naman sa mga operators na may mga 2-5 taxis or jeepneys or buses or pick-up trucks. Yung mga NAGSUSUMIKAP na mayroon lang 1 sasakyan ang napeperhuwisyo ng husto. Yan ang equal protectiion of the law sa DAANG MATUWID. Tama yata ang komentaryo ng maraming bloggers na ang Daang Matuwid ay pang mayaman lang talaga, at nagiging BIGLANG LIKO pag dating sa mga mahihirap na nagsusumikap at kumain-dili na tulad namin aiiiiii…

  7. No scheme will be effective save the improvement of public transportation. Remember the era of the Love Bus? Improve and increase the capacity and reach of the MRT/LRT system. If the car using public sees that taking the public transport is better, then, the no. of private vehicles on the road will be reduced. Look at other cities outside the Philippines: Singapore, KL, Tokyo, etc. They have very efficient and reliable public transport systems and people would rather use them than bring their cars.

  8. This administration is good at going backwards and using incompetence for decisions. An odd-even plan would keep 50% of the vehicles off the road. My guess is that when that is not enough, they will put in a calendar date plan. Then only cars with their plates matching the last digit of date will be allowed on the roads. That only allows 10% of the cars on the road. These are typical solutions of government. The problem is not enough roads for the vehicles. So they decide to eliminate the vehicles on the roads, and not to increase the roads. What they do not see is the impact. The number of buses, jeepneys, motorcycles, and tricycles will increase to carry the people. The people still have to be moved. So the end result will be the same, traffic congestion. The solution is in adequate mass public transportation and in adequate public road system.

    • danilo de leon on

      agree. but i think a more drastic solution is needed. time to bite the bullet so to speak. rid metromanila of the jeepney. this will free all alternate roads that motorists avoid because of the stop and go pace of traffic cause by the jeepneys. city governments should operate and maintain city operated buses that can provide reliable, safe and efficient public mass transport system. of course, jeepney drivers and operators will howl and cry in protests. maybe a system of financial buy back scheme can be drawn up to appease them. pera lang ang kailangan. dami naman pera ang gobyerno,inuubos lang sa walang kwentang bagay tulad ng eleksyon at pang impeach sa mga kalaban. metromanila can never hope to be a modern, prosperous and developed mega city with fleets of dilapidated, noxious carbon emitting, rolling coffins clogging its streets. the jeepney represents everything that is rotten in the filipino culture and values. picture metromanila 20 or 30 years from now and weep.

  9. I have a solution: Transfer all government offices to the suburbs spread outside Metro Manila and relocate all government employees, if possible. Demolish all government buildings and where possible build roads on the lots. Relocate all squatters, whether they like it or not. NO this will not be the all and be all solution but it’s a start.

  10. Implement park and ride system for private vehicles which would force them to commute that is why Mass Transport is very important, implement a timetable system on Edsa, and let the bus just travel on left hand lane of any road, with average speed limit, same as jeepney only can load and unload in designated area..Implement as well appointment system in government or private offices..Build ports in nearby provinces, whether airports or seaports for cargo!!Modernised driving system and standard by implementing point system on driving license..required vehicle insurance and maintenance certificate for each vehicle that run on public road. thus we can create jobs for our vocational college graduates!!these thing can make our roads worthy, safe and easy!!

  11. Kung gustong mawala ang traffic sa metro manila,alisin lahat ang pribadong sa sasakyan,lahat ng tao ay gumamit ng pampublikong sasakyan,,para pantay-pantay,walang mahirap walang mayaman!
    Yan kahit sa pananginip ay hindi mangyayari!!dahil ang meron at mga kompanya ng car hindi papayag!
    Please lang wag na kayong mangarap na mawawala pa ang traffic!
    Halos kasing dami na ng tao ang sasakyan sa kalsada,di naman nanganganak ng daan ang manila!
    Wag na kayong manisi lalo na yung may sasakyan,dahil kasama kayo sa problema, kaya ba ninyong magsakripisyon na magcommute? Tiggilan na ninyo ang reklamo dahil yung tunay na sulusyon ay hindi ninyo masisikmura!!wag na kayong mag inarte!!please!!