• MMDA suspends number coding on Christmas Eve

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    AMID the anticipated holiday traffic, Motorists will have a sigh of relief from the number coding scheme on Christmas Eve.

    This after the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Sunday announced that it will lift the Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program (UVVRP) or Number Coding Scheme on December 24.

    The MMDA’s move came after Malacañang had declared Dec. 24 a special non-working holiday while Christmas Day, Dec 25, is a regular holiday.

    “December 24, 2013 is declared as a special holiday [non working holiday], and the number coding is automatically lifted,” the MMDA said on its advisory on Sunday.

    In justifying its move, Malacañang said December 24 was declared a holiday to “give the people full opportunity to celebrate Christmas with their family and loved ones.”

    Those who will be benefited from the suspension of the number coding scheme are motorists with vehicles whose license plates end in 3 and 4.

    Under the number coding scheme, which aims to ease the volume of traffic on Metro Manila’s streets, vehicles are banned from major roads from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., depending on the last digit of their license plates.

    Meanwhile, MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino said the agency’s Mabuhay or Christmas lanes are a big success as more motorists are using it to avoid heavy traffic in major thoroughfares.

    “It was a success many motorists are happy and satisfied with the Christmas lanes,” he added.

    To lessen traffic buildup caused by the Christmas season, the MMDA also implemented its “zipper Lane” traffic scheme along a portion of Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA)

    According to the MMDA, the “zipper lane” or traffic counterflow starts from the inner lane of northbound from SM Megamall up to Pioneer, along EDSA.

    The “zipper lane” will be opened from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. until Monday (December 23).

    RITCHIE A. HORARIO

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