Proposal: Will car brand coding work on EDSA?

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 18 2019 10:29 AM

MANILA - The proposal to have a car brand coding may not be a feasible solution to address traffic congestion on EDSA, an official of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said on Wednesday.

MMDA's EDSA Special Traffic and Transport Zone chief Edison "Bong" Nebrija said he does not believe that the proposal of former Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) consultant Arison Gorospe would work.

"No, not really," he told ANC's Headstart.

Nebrija said when they come up with a policy, they do a dry run and check for apprehension.

Under Gorospe's proposal, the following brands would be banned from plying EDSA:

  • Monday - Toyota
  • Tuesday - Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Isuzu
  • Wednesday - Nissan, Ford, Foton
  • Thursday - Honda, Chevrolet, Mazda, Subaru
  • Friday - Suzuki, Kia, Volkswagen, Mercedez Benz
  • Saturday - JAC, Tata, Audi, BAIC
  • Sunday - Mini and Lotus, Volvo, Ssangyong, and others

The coding for each car model would also change every 6 months.

Nebrija said that just like number coding, the proposal might create the sale of other car brands just to beat brand coding.

He noted the MMDA would have to train personnel to profile car brands.

"There will be so many cars. How can we even tell which is the brand?" he said.

"Our enforcers are hardly car owners themselves, motorcycles probably, but not cars so they could hardly profile which is which and the apprehension would be hard," he added.

Recently, Caloocan Rep. Edgar Erice proposed to ban private vehicles on EDSA during rush hour to ease traffic congestion on Metro Manila's main highway.

"I think the recommendation of Cong. Erice is more radical than what we proposed last year. This is totally eliminating the private vehicles which is right now we’re seeing 300,000 to 340,000 a day on EDSA. Capacity of EDSA is 268,000," Nebrija said.

Last year, the MMDA recommended the high occupancy volume scheme wherein vehicles with only 1 occupant would be moved to alternate routes.

Nebrija, however, said the proposal might just be transferring the problem from EDSA to alternate roads.

"If we will be moving 300,000 vehicles off EDSA during those 3 hours of rush hour, can the alternate road take this kind of volume?" he said.

Another suggestion that was raised to decongest EDSA is by making it a one way highway.

"That's really something far off because there will be a lot of engineering intervention that needs to be done if we would be implementing that," he said.

Analysts have also said that transforming EDSA into a one way highway will create record traffic jams rather than solve perennial gridlocks.

Increasing lanes for buses may work, Nebrija said.

"Right now they have 2, that's 40 percent of EDSA. Now were trying to give them 3, that's 60 percent. It could work but what I've been telling we've already given them 2, they've already taken 3," he said.

The yellow lane, he said, is designed to make buses move forward faster compared to private vehicles.

However, there are still private vehicles who continue to use it as an overtaking lane.

"In July, we have already apprehended 70,000 vehicles non-contact, yellow lane violations alone. Eighty percent of that are private vehicles," he said.