Press Release
November 9, 2012


Senator Edgardo J. Angara urged the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) to use part of its P36.98 billion proposed 2013 budget to create and implement a rational road transport plan for decongesting vehicle traffic throughout Metro Manila.

During the DOTC budget deliberations in the Senate, Angara said, "Our roads are already over capacity, especially during rush hour. And the resulting delays due to traffic are costly to business and trade especially in Metro Manila."

According to the DOTC, the most recent Road Measured Capacity (RMC) for EDSA is around 1,500 to 1,700 buses. The RMC estimates the maximum number of vehicles that a road can manage at a given time without being congested.

However, DOTC officials say that around 4,000 buses travel along EDSA every day, with some 3,700 with franchises and a few hundred without.

"If this daily problem is compounded, it may reach a point beyond our capacity to rehabilitate," lamented Angara, who is Vice-Chair of the Senate Committee on Finance.

The veteran lawmaker, who is also Chair of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, explained that congestion in our major highways causes hundreds of millions in losses, stressing the need to invest in research and traffic modeling initiatives that are focused on freeing up our roads.

DOTC officials made assurances that there is an ongoing study being conducted in partnership with World Bank towards bus rationalization in Metro Manila. The results of this study will be published in the third quarter of 2013.

Angara suggested, "In the meantime, why don't we tap local agencies to initiate some engineering work to ease congestion? For example, some of our SUCs--like the UP College of Engineering--could test the feasibility of rerouting some of the bottlenecked areas of major thoroughfares. Some of the work towards decongestion can already be done now."

The former UP President then concluded, "Ultimately, any long-term solution to the traffic problem in Metro Manila would take a lot of time and resources, but we must always keep in mind that the cost-benefit ratio of such projects will always be in our favor."

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