MANILA — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) plans to put “express buses” that will offer point-to-point, non-stop trips to ease commuters’ daily travel along Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue (EDSA).
In the weekly agency’s radio program on Sunday, Emerson Carlos, MMDA assistant general manager for operations, said that plans for the express bus service are now in the works to help ease the daily traffic jam in the metropolis.
He said talks are ongoing among the officials of the MMDA, Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) for the project.
“Magkakausap dito ang MMDA, DOTC at LTFRB na kung saan meron silang isang fleet ng buses na magta-travel from one point to another. Derecho na ito. (The MMDA, DOTC, and LTFRB have talked about this, where they will have one fleet of buses that will travel straight from one point to another.) The express bus will only load passengers, like for example, at Ayala Business Center (in Makati), it will travel straight to a point in Quezon City,” Carlos explained.
He said one of the reasons for this project is to let those commuters with private cars to leave their vehicles and ride the public utility buses that may also lessen the traffic congestion.
He said the routes being considered are those that connect business districts in Metro Manila, like Quezon City, Makati, and Taguig, among others.
The new public transport concept will involve a fleet of 50 public utility buses with existing franchises.
“In order for us to lure office workers in Makati City not to use their private cars, they need comfortable public transport,” Carlos said.
He said the buses which will be used for the project already have existing franchises which will be just amended by the LTFRB.
“We will not be adding buses because we will be using public utility buses with existing franchises,” he said.
He said the DOTC has already asked MMDA if these express buses can take regular lanes and underpasses along EDSA.
In terms of the fare, Carlos said the express bus will have a special rate since this is considered as a premium bus.