MMDA: EDSA ‘manageable’ despite nearing pre-pandemic volume, no need for coding yet

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by Drei Laurel | Jul 15, 2021
PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is standing firm with its decision not to reimplement the number coding scheme, saying doing so may compromise the safety of the capital’s commuters. 

In a statement, the agency pointed out that while the volume of traffic on EDSA is nearing pre-pandemic levels, the overall situation is “still manageable.”

“Before pandemic, vehicle volume on EDSA was averaging at 405,000 but now, it is about 399,000,” MMDA chairman Benhur Abalos explained.

“However, southbound travel speed is faster now at 27kph, compared to 11 kilometers per hour before the pandemic,’ the official added, attributing the improvement to the implementation of the EDSA Busway, the opening of U-turn slots along the thoroughfare, Mabuhay Lanes, and new infrastructure.

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Abalos also stressed that the agency cannot just reimplement the number coding scheme as public transportation is still operating at a limited capacity. The measure’s sudden implementation could lead to more commuters lining up at queues, with some even resorting to carpooling—a situation Abalos described as “hazardous to the health of the majority.”

“If we implement the number coding scheme now, can our public transport accommodate passengers given the minimum health protocols such as social distancing needed to be implemented?” the official asked.

"I am asking for the public’s understanding and utmost cooperation as the government is still addressing the issue of transportation,” he added, also taking the opportunity to encourage motorists to use Mabuhay Lanes as alternate routes to their destinations.

Do you agree with the MMDA’s assessment of the traffic situation?

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PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño
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