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Did Mambaling underpass help improve traffic flow along N. Bacalso? CCTO believes it did

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio June 18,2019 - 03:46 PM

The Cebu City Transportation Office (CTO) said that the Mambaling underpass has successfully eased traffic at the Natalio Bacalso-Francisco Llamas junction in Cebu City. | CDN Digital file photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines—For the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO), the newly opened Mambaling underpass has helped improve traffic flow along Natalio Bacalso Avenue, especially at the Francisco Llamas junction.

Read more: Mambaling underpass opens on Saturday

According to Francisco Ouano, chief of the CCTO, traffic flow in the area where the underpass was built has been better in the past three days since the opening of the road last June 15, 2019.

On the morning of Monday, June 17 and Tuesday, June 18, the concentration of traffic shifted from the F. Llamas junction to the areas where universities and schools are located along the highway.

“It goes to show that the underpass has eased the F. Llamas junction from the traffic brought by a heavy volume of vehicles because the cars can now choose where they want to go,” said Ouano in Cebuano.

Red more: Traffic in Mambaling underpass: Wait until Monday, June 17

One jeepney driver plying the 10H route (Bulacao, Pardo to SM City Cebu) agreed with Ouano’s observation.

“Wala na gyod trapik ron, dili parehas sa una. Sa una, basta buntag, hapit usa ka oras bag-o ko makalusot anang ilang gihimo nga underpass. Karon, diretso-diretso na gyod,” said the 48-year-old driver who asked not to be named. 

(The traffic is really better now. Before, during mornings, it would take almost an hour before I can get through that area where the underpass is built. Now, the traffic flow is better.)

The jeepney driver added that the only time traffic becomes bad now is if there are other jeepney drivers who pick up passengers away from authorised jeepney stops near a mall. 

“Matrapik rag naay mamick-up sa Shopwise. Dili unta sila mamick-up didto basta buntag. Adto ta sila sa unahan kay samok kaayo,” added the driver, who has been a jeepney driver for 10 years now. 

(It only gets congested once there are those who pick up passengers at Shopwise. I hope they don’t do that, especially during mornings. I hope they go to the proper jeepney stops a little further because it’s very irritating.)  

Read more: IN PHOTOS: Mambaling underpass now open for public use

Ouano said that traffic congestion is still expected from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. on weekdays but only in areas where schools are located because this is when students and workers travel to their respective schools or  workplaces.

This time, Ouano said the traffic can be averted through the access roads along E. Sabellano Street, Macopa Street, Tagunol Street, and Cabreros Street while the underpass accommodates the vehicles travelling straight to the city center.

The same traffic situation can also be experienced around 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays still at the school zones as students are workers travel back home around this time.

Read more: No buses and minibuses for Mambaling underpass; KMK and Mybus allowed

But the traffic flow in the F. Llamas junction is way better than before the underpass was built.

“This is the reason why we cannot allow trucks to travel during peak hours because the volume of cars is too big,” Ouano said.

Ouano said that at least three traffic enforcers will be deployed N. Bacalso-F. Llamas junction for every shift in order to facilitate the traffic, especially during the peak hours.

He also said the CTO has asked the help of the village workers near the underpass area to help maintain the traffic outside the schools during peak hours because the CTO is undermanned.

The CTO has 400 traffic enforcers working in three shift and they watch over 80 junctions in the city and the major thoroughfares.

Ouano also reiterated that minibuses and buses with point-to-point franchises that ends in the Soutbus terminal are still not allowed to pass the highway.

He said no bus operator has violated the mandate so far. /bmjo

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