MMDA to involve local communities in managing traffic

Because residents know the traffic in their area better
Apr 18, 2012

Ever wished that you could do something about the traffic situation where you live? It seems the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority has heard your prayers as the agency will soon tap local communities to manage the traffic in their respective areas.

Under its Metro Traffic Watch Program, the MMDA will be enlisting the help of barangays, homeowners associations, traffic experts, academicians, non-government offices, and civic organizations in ensuring the smooth flow of traffic on the secondary roads and inner streets of Metro Manila.

"Traffic management should not be the sole job of the government," said MMDA chairman Francis Tolentino. "It is everybody's responsibility. Mobilizing city residents who are familiar with the terrain of their respective localities in such a meaningful endeavor will be of great help to the MMDA."

To establish the community-based system, the MMDA will first engage barangay officials, school and university officials, traffic engineers, residents and students "in a series of consultations and dialogues to determine how they would go about solving traffic problems in their jurisdictions." Once this has been resolved, the designated community traffic aides will undergo training on traffic enforcement and be acquainted with traffic rules and regulations at the MMDA's Traffic Academy in Santa Mesa, Manila, before they are deputized to manage the traffic in their area.

"This is like a neighborhood watch--residents watching their backyards and addressing traffic concerns as it happens," Tolentino added.

The MMDA chairman also stressed the importance of public involvement in managing traffic and coming up with temporary and permanent solutions to motor-vehicle congestion.

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