Riding public told: Be patient, adjust skeds
Patience and adjustments in schedules will be required of commuters and motorists traveling to and from Mandaue City once repairs on the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge start next week.
Glenn Antigua, Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue (TEAM) operations chief, said the concreting of Ouano Avenue started yesterday, which means long lines of vehicles starting at the front of the Mandaue City Sports Complex going north.
TEAM executive director Florentino Nimor Jr. said the contractor starts work on the inner lane going north, one of four lanes at Ouano Avenue, which makes it off limits to commuters and motorists.
Nimor said they have prepared a detour at the back of the old Mandaue City Public Market.
They placed markings at the corner before the sports complex and intersection in Parkmall.
Vehicles coming from the south going to the first bridge can now detour from the back of the old market then right turn to the Land Transportation Office through Catalino Ouano Street then right turn going to Bantayan sa Hari.
The heirs of Ernesto Ouano who own a lot donated portions of it to be used as detour.
“The site is already concreted. All we have to do is to knock off a certain portion of the fence so it can be passable,” he said
In Lapu-Lapu City, the City Traffic Management System (CTMS) will issue traffic advisories to establishments on the new traffic rerouting scheme starting on Monday.
Only one lane of the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge from Mandaue to Lapu-Lapu City will be open to motorists, with those heading to the airport given priority.
In case the M.L. Quezon Highway in Lapu-Lapu City develops traffic, other vehicles going to the airport can use the Matumbo Road via Maximo Patalinjug Avenue.
Other vehicles for Lapu-Lapu City will be diverted to the Marcelo Fernan Bridge in case of heavy build up at the old bridge.
Vehicles from Lapu-Lapu City going to Mandaue City will have to use the Marcelo Fernan Bridge only.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said it can finish the bridge repairs if their crew work 16 hours of two shifts a day in July this year.
But Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza said she will ask the DPWH if they can work on the repairs 24/7 so they can finish earlier.
“Dako gyud na og epekto sa economy dinhi sa siyudad kon taas-taas ang pag-agwanta sa traffic (It really affects the economy of the city if it takes longer to suffer in traffic),” she said.
Radaza also encouraged commuters to use the ferry boats plying the Muelle Osmeña wharf and Pier 3 in Cebu City to avoid delays in their schedule.
More traffic enforcers will be deployed at M.L. Quezon Highway to assist motorists.
For their part, Mandaue business leaders have resigned themselves to adjusting to the traffic congestion which reduced deliveries from four to five daily to two or three deliveries at most.
Donato Busa, president of the Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI), said businesses in Mandaue were informed of the roads under repair and rehabilitation.
He said they were looking for solutions to mitigate the traffic.
“Some of us would meet our customers in malls to offset the traffic. There’s going to be heavy traffic due to the many constructions and that means reorganization and rescheduling of our deliveries,” Busa said.
“Naanad nalang mi sa environment namo ron (we have gotten used to the environment now), but it is very costly for us to operate in this kind of environment,” said Philip Tan, president and chief executive officer of Wellmade Motors.
The Mandaue Chamber will meet with city officials within the month to map out delivery schedules and alternate routes for the businesses.
Business leaders urged the DPWH to prioritize the road repairs at the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge, where delivery trucks pass.
Tan said the mayors of the cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu should work together to ease the traffic congestion.
“The traffic is getting worse, with or without repairs ongoing. What is happening in Manila with traffic is already happening in Cebu. The signs are here,” Tan said.
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