Fiesta Señor 2024: Will original foot procession route be used?

By: Niña Mae C. Oliverio - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | December 01,2023 - 11:28 AM

Cebu City Councilor Phillip Zafra, together with some personnel from the CCDRRMO, Cebu City Transportation Office, and representatives from the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño, and Bus Rapid Transit, have started early Friday morning, December 1, checking the original routes along Osmeña Boulevard for the Fiesta Señor 2024 solemn foot processions, after Mayor Michael Rama expressed his objection on the changes of the routes. CDN Digital photo | Niña Mae Oliverio

CEBU CITY, Philippines — After Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said he wanted the original routes for the foot processions  unchanged, the working committee for the Fiesta Señor held another walk-through on Friday morning, December 1, 2023.

Various stakeholders attended the said walk-through such as Cebu City Councilors Phillip Zafra and Jerry Guardo, members from the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO), Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CCDRRMO), Basilica Minore del Santo Niño (BMSN), and from Cebu Bus Rapid Transit (CBRT) management.

The walk-through kicked off at around 5:25 a.m. on Friday, starting from the Basilica going to the stretch of Osmeña Boulevard, near the Fuente Circle.

During the inspection, the stakeholders checked the feasibility of returning the original routes of the foot processions by identifying the risks or danger that the crowd might encounter when they pass via Osmeña Boulevard, where the construction of the main thoroughfare is ongoing.

READ MORE: Fiesta Señor: New routes for foot processions, CCTO to tow vehicles that cause obstruction

A few things needed to be done

Based on their initial assessment, Zafra, who chairs the committee on peace and order, said that there are a few things that need to be done should the original route of procession be followed.

“But accordingly, per our initial discussion, kaya ra sa DOTr (Department of Transportation), sa BRT proponent, and of course, sa city government. Ang crucial lang is ang relocation of the two skywalks. We really have to relocate those skywalks para unhampered gyud ang flow sa procession,” he said.

READ MORE: Fiesta Señor 2024: Routes for solemn foot processions now under review

Zafra further clarified that they would not destroy the skywalks but relocate them instead. In previous reports, the two skywalks were reportedly to be relocated near South Road Properties (SRP).

When asked if sticking to the usual foot procession route is feasible amid the ongoing BRT construction, Zafra said that could be done.

Along with the possible changes, he said there also might be rerouting of the traffic during the removal of the two skywalks.

“Sa DOTr nga side, especially kaning mga stations nga ilang gi setup, accordingly, makaya nila before the end of the month nga mapahiluna nila,” he said.

Besides the stations located at the center of the main thoroughfare, they would also adjust the blue separators backward so that there would be enough space for the crowd to walk through.

The blue separators refer to the blue-colored steal sheets covering the construction sites of the BRT to protect the motorists.

Meanwhile, they would also temporarily remove some of the concrete separators, those colored yellow.

“Then, ni recommend atong engineering [office] nga bolted siya,” Zafra said.

On safety

He added that the CCDRRMO also had similar observations on the matter.

“Kuyaw siya nga in case of emergency, fixed ang separator, simbako naa’y mahitabo sa BRT pass…mas maayo kung bolted ang separator. Mao’y usa sa akong na discover,” he said.

Moreover, Zafra clarified that going back to the usual foot procession route was not Rama’s order because it has been used for many years already.

They were only able to plan the new routes, which was presented last November 15 during a press briefing at the BMSN, because in September, the BRT management could not give their 100-percent commitment to allow the crowd to pass the main thoroughfare in Osmeña.

“Karon, ni-conduct gyud ta’g actual nasad nga walk through para makita gyud nato and per their assessment, makaya ra nila ang gi-recommend sa disaster office. We have Fr. Ion sa Basilica nga ni-conform sad siya nga mas okay gyud diri kay as originally proposed, anhi man gud,” Zafra said.

“Tingali ang Santo Niño siguro ni-giya sad gyud nato nga ganahan sad gyud tingali siya nga anhi gihapon siya moagi,” he added.

After the walk-through, the stakeholders will meet again for the changes of the traffic plan which will also be announced soon.




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TAGS: Cebu, faith, Fiesta Señor

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