The Metro Manila Development Authority has deployed numerous tow trucks to Baclaran in Pasay City to enforce the no-parking policy and maintain the smooth flow of traffic in the area.
“A number of tow trucks are in the area to remind motorists that the area is a tow-away zone,” said MMDA general manager and acting chairman Thomas Orbos.
Orbos said despite the thousands of faithful going every Wednesday to do their weekly devotion at the place of worship, stakeholders continue to follow what have been agreed upon to maintain orderliness and cleanliness in the place.
“People still comply with what we have agreed on when we started clearing the service road of obstructions for an unhampered travel of motorists and pedestrians alike. This is proof that it is possible to instill discipline to ease traffic in the area,” he said.
Orbos said the agency will install an outpost to make sure that fixtures in the area remains in order.
Aside from clearing the service road on Roxas Boulevard—from C. Rivera Street up to the corner of Epifanio de los Santos Avenue—of obstructions, MMDA personnel, in cooperation with the local governments of Parañaque and Pasay, also cleaned the area previously occupied by illegally parked vehicles and numerous stalls.
MMDA has also placed plastic barriers to allow vendors to temporarily do their business on the first two lanes near the sidewalk while waiting to be relocated at a more conducive vending area.
Prior to the clearing operations last week, MMDA officials led by Orbos conducted a series of consultations with the stakeholders such as vendors and business establishments along the service road and Baclaran area.
“We have been informing them of President Duterte’s directive to decongest not only Roxas Boulevard but also the rest of the roads and streets in Metro Manila to ease the traffic condition,” Orbos said.
With all the road obstructions and structures cleared, Orbos said motorists can now use the four lanes of the service road.
MMDA plans to clear the whole stretch of the service road, from Baclaran to T.M. Kalaw in Manila, which is about six kilometers long.
The clearing operation is part of a short-term solution to ease traffic in the metropolis pending the approval of both Houses of Congress to the emergency power to be given to President Rodrigo Duterte to solve the worsening problem on road congestion.
Orbos admitted that the continuing increase of the number of private vehicles was the main cause of monstrous traffic in Metro Manila. He cited that more than 5,000 vehicles enter the Batangas port daily and most of them are for distribution in Metro Manila.
The MMDA said that the affordable price of brand new cars is also a factor.
Orbos said the volume of vehicles on the road can no longer be accommodated by the limited road network in Metro Manila.
Some analysts said to solve traffic congestion in Metro Manila, the government must focus on the development and improvement of the public transport system. They also recommended the strict regulation of car ownership, of a no garage, no car policy and higher fees on parking areas.