By Nelson S. Badilla
Cubao, Pasay last stops in scheme starting 15 August
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) yesterday vowed to strictly enforce the ban against provincial buses traversing Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) during rush hour.
MMDA general manager Jojo Garcia said the agency is not deferring the 15 August start of the ban, adding their decision on the matter is already “final.”
The scheme mandates buses coming from northern Luzon to end their routes in Cubao, Quezon City while those coming from the south will have to disembark all passengers in Pasay City.
Buses without terminals in Pasay City can use the MMDA-operated Southwest Interim Provincial Terminal, Garcia said.
Rush hours only
The ban will be in effect 7-10 a.m. and 6-9 p.m., Monday to Friday. Violators will be fined P2,000 for the first offense.
The MMDA official, however, clarified the 15 August transfer of the provincial buses from EDSA Quezon City to Valenzuela City will be deferred because the terminal being constructed is not yet finished.
He said the agency wants to ensure the five-hectare terminal will be compliant with standards set by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).
LTRFB requires terminals to have waiting sheds, comfort rooms and walkways.
No cost to gov’t
“Once operational, provincial buses coming from the north can drop off their passengers inside the terminal located on Paso de Blas Road,” Garcia said.
“Metro Manila-bound passengers can transfer to city operating buses that will take them to their destinations,” he added.
The Valenzuela City terminal is expected to accommodate 298 buses from nine firms. It will house provincial buses, city operating buses, Asian utility vehicles, jeepneys and even tricycles.
The operation of the terminal is at no cost to the government.
The terminal is “part of the agency’s long term plan to move out provincial bus terminals along EDSA to decongest traffic in the metropolis,” Garcia pointed out.