DOTr includes BRT, LRT in list of projects to solve traffic
A “BASKET of solutions” has been lined up to address the worsening traffic congestion in the metropolis.
Four projects have been identified by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) as components of the synchronized transportation system that will be implemented in Metro Cebu.
Two of these were the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and the Light Rail Transit (LRT).
Incidentally, the BRT was backed by Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña while the LRT was endorsed by Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Dino. Both officials have been at odds.
The two other components of the Integrated Intermodal Transport System (IITS) were point-to-point (P2P) bus system and a monorail project.
In a statement, Dino described the IITS as a “basket of solutions” to the traffic problem and mass transport needs in the metropolis.
He said Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade had hoped that the IITS would achieve “partial operability” within one and a half to two years.
“Once implemented, Cebu will become beautiful and more livable,” said Dino, quoting Tugade as saying.
The IITS was the product of Tugade’s roadside inspection of the 23-km route of the BRT last month.
Among those considered in identifying the projects were Metro Cebu’s road profile and the fast-growing need of efficient mass transport systems in bigger and inter-connected cities, such as Cebu, Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and Talisay, as well as the neighboring municipalities.
While the BRT was feasible, Dino said the DOTr said it would only be implemented in roads with three lanes or more.
“BRT will never work on narrow roads. So we have reached an agreement to allow it only on three-lane roads. Because if we allow BRT on narrow roads, it may cause disaster to other IITS components and other existing transport system,” Dino said.
Cebu Daily News tried to get the comment of Osmeña, the main proponent of the BRT, but he declined to issue a statement, saying he was not yet fully informed about the development.
Among the components of the IITS, Dino said Tugade considered the P2P bus system as the fastest to implement.
“There’s already an established system which the DOTr sees its potential that it will complement with other mass transit systems. All we need to do is to add more units,” Dino said.
The DOTr, he said, was also planning to have a monorail system in Lapu-Lapu City, connecting Mactan- Cebu International Airport to different hotels and resorts on the island.
The LRT system, which is a major component of the IITS, will traverse from Carcar City in southern Cebu to Danao City in the north.
Dino said a Singaporean-Chinese and Filipino consortium has submitted a proposal to construct the LRT system worth $3 billion.
It will have a subway in Cebu City and an airport line from Mandaue to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport in Lapu-Lapu City.
“LRT will become the main arterial backbone of Cebu’s mass transportation, with other IITS components as feeder lines serving internal peripheries,” said Dino.
Construction of the LRT, Dino said, would take longer than the other IITS components.
Part of the DOTr’s IITS was to have an inter-link terminal which would serve as a common station for all transit systems.
“This is a one-in-a-million opportunity for the Cebuanos to embrace. We are thankful that DOTr Secretary Tugade burns his midnight candle in tracing out what Cebu really need for its mass transportation and traffic problem and I fully support him. The DOTr and OPAV (Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas) will work closely so that this will happen in the next two years,” Dino said.
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