Traffic may breach pre-pandemic levels by June: MMDA

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 19 2022 10:42 AM | Updated as of May 19 2022 10:52 AM

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MANILA – Expect heavier traffic in Metro Manila when face-to-face classes resume in June, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said Thursday.

MMDA chairman Romando “Don” Artes told TeleRadyo that traffic levels may breach pre-pandemic levels next month. 

“Bago po mag-eleksyon, nagpa-conduct po tayo ng volume count, ang number na po ng average ay 400,000 vehicles, yan po ay 5,000 short na lang noong pre-pandemic level na 405,000,” he said.

“Pero tandaan po natin, wala pa pong pasok, so kung magkakaroon po ng face-to-face classes ngayong Hunyo, ay expect po natin na mas marami pa at mabi-breach po yung 405,000 na pre-pandemic level.”

(Before the elections, we conducted a volume account. On the average, there were 400,000 vehicles--only 5,000 short of the 405,000 pre-pandemic level. But let us remember that there are no classes yet. So if face-to-face classes resume this June, let's expect more vehicles to breach the 405,000 pre-pandemic levels.)

Artes also noted that more vehicles have been plying the roads since the pandemic.

“Napakarami rin po nung 2 years na may pandemic, siguro po, more or less mga kalahating milyon ang nadagdag na sasakyan sa lansangan--nung 2 years period po na yan, so 60-70 percent naman po niyan ay pumapasok sa Metro Manila or naandito sa Metro Manila, kaya po i-expect po natin na mas bibigat pa yung daloy ng traffic ngayong Hunyo.”

(In the 2 years of the pandemic, more or less half a million vehicles were added to the roads. About 60-70 percent of these are in Metro Manila, so we can really expect heavier traffic in June.)

In order to help ease traffic woes, Artes said they are mulling a new number coding scheme, and meeting with Civil Service Commission chief Karlo Nograles on the possibility of making government employees report to work at 7 a.m.

The official said they hope the new administration will improve the mass transport system in the country.

“Sa amin pong palagay, 2 po yung major na dapat gawin ng next administration. ‘Yan po, unang-una yung pag-improve po ng mass transportation system, dahil po kung maayos or maganda yung ating mass transport, maiiwasan na po yung pagbili ng sasakyan na makakadagdag sa volume at sa traffic sa ating mga lansangan.”

“Pangalawa po siguro yung decentralization, siguro po may mga industriya o sektor na dapat ilipat na from Metro Manila sa mga karatig na probinsiya. Para po hindi lahat dito ay dito nagkukumpulan sa Metro Manila. Dahil napakarami po talaga ng tao na at sasakyan dito sa Metro Manila,” he said.

(We think the new administration can do 2 major projects to ease traffic. First, they can improve the mass transport system so fewer people will buy cars that increase vehicle volume. Second, they should focus in decentralization--maybe some industries or sectors can move out of Metro Manila, so that not everybody is here.)

--TeleRadyo, 19 May 2022