MANILA — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Tuesday said the express bus system will result to better traffic management as it asked the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) to consider several conditions before implementing its planned roll out as early as next month.
The passenger express bus system, is a joint project of the MMDA, DOTC, and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), is aimed at decongesting traffic along major thoroughfares particularly during rush hours along the stretch of Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA).
In a letter sent to DOTC Secretary Joseph Abaya, MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino said that the planned roll out of express bus service would translate to a faster and better commuter service while contributing to the overall traffic reduction in the metropolis.
The new bus system, set for implementation this year, aims to lessen the volume of vehicles along EDSA and major thoroughfares by encouraging employees to take buses instead of using their vehicles.
These “express buses” will travel from their pick-up point straight to destination without picking up passengers thus a shorter time travel to entice particularly those usually driving cars along EDSA to leave their vehicles at home.
Tolentino said concerned agencies are still discussing the exact date of its implementation likely by next month including the routes and schedule of trips.
Tolentino affirmed the MMDA’s assistance in the program and proposed the following provisions for better traffic management in the routes that will be selected:
1. That the said express bus will not translate into additional units of buses but rather be substituted on 1:1 ratio for the existing bus;
2. That express buses will not be exempted from existing traffic regulations. However, these buses will be allowed to traverse the EDSA underpasses provided that each bus has 60 percent passenger capacity;
3. That there will be pre-agreed bus stops (utilizing existing MMDA bus stops) and said participant buses will not be allowed to load and unload passengers in between these stops; and
4. That for purposes of easy identification, these express buses will have a uniform designated color.