MANILA – Monster traffic jams on the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) have prompted Malacañang to appeal to disgruntled motorists and commuters for understanding and cooperation as government agencies aim to bring resolution to the disconcerting situation, especially in crucial areas like the Port of Manila.
“Hinihiling natin ang dagdag na pag-unawa at kooperasyon ng lahat ng sektor upang masolusyonan ang problema ng congestion sa Port of Manila. Alinsunod sa direktiba ni Pangulong Aquino at ng Gabinete, binuo ni MMDA (Metro Manila Development Authority) chairman Francis Tolentino ang Task Force Pantalan kahapon upang pabilisin ang daloy ng mga sasakyan sa labas at patungo sa Port Area, Manila,” Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in an interview over radio dzRB.
Coloma likewise solicited the patience of the business community, as well, given the detrimental effect the road congestion bears on commerce and trade..
“Lahat ng mga nagpapaantala sa daloy ng komersyo, kalakal, at negosyo ay tinutukoy po ng ating pamahalaan dahil sa pagbibigay ng halaga natin sa kabuhayan ng ating mga mamamayan. Kinakailangan pong maging maayos ‘yan para hindi mabalam ang daloy ng komersyo at ng kalakal dahil ito ang pinanggagalingan ng kabuhayan ng ating mga mamamayan,” he said.
In prior reports, Chairman Tolentino of the MMDA said that the impasse at the NLEX was due to the massive volume of cargo trucks loading container vans out of the Port of Manila. Congestion at Manila’s Port Area brought traffic to a virtual standstill, in recent days, hindering the flow of vehicles for up to nine kilometers from the port.
A group composed of personnel from the MMDA, the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), and the Philippine National Police’s Highway Patrol Group was recently created by the MMDA to help address the problem.
Dubbed “Task Force Pantalan” the group will lead the decongestion campaign, for two weeks beginning Sept. 6 to Sept. 21..
For the duration of this period, a counterflow lane on NLEX shall be enforced for all Class A and D vehicles, including shuttle buses. The Balintawak toll plaza will be temporarily closed to give way to private vehicles.
A counterflow lane will also be created at Del Pan Bridge in Tondo, Manila, while two lanes along R-10 road, the length of which stretches across Navotas, Caloocan and Manila, will be opened to trucks.