DPWH and DOTr : REJECT THE 5 Billion Peso integrated bus terminal beside Philippine Area
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Everyday, there is an estimated three hundred thousand (300,000 ) commuters coming from Central and Northern Luzon going to Metro Manila taking different provincial bus lines. From the existing bus stations in Caloocan, Manila, Quezon City and Pasay, these commuters further take other modes of transport to their end destinations for study, work or go to government agencies inside Metro Manila. It takes an average 3 to 4 hours travel time to reach provincial bus terminals inside Metro Manila from Central Luzon and about 10 to 14 hours from Northern Luzon and then another hour on another mode of transport to their end destination.
As the Executive Director of Provincial Bus Operators Association of the Philippines, We reject the plan of the government to build a 5 Billion peso bus terminal beside the Philippine Area in Bocaue Bulacan. (http://thestandard.com.ph/news/national/263606/government-to-build-new-integrated-bus-terminal.html (https://www.philstar.com/nation/2018/04/20/1807535/government-build-p5-b-bus-terminal-beside-philippine-arena
An additional terminal fee will be added to the cost of transportation as well as additional travel time of about 1-2 hours due to the transfer of passengers from the provincial buses to Metrobuses to every commuter if such plan will push through. Aside from that, it is very troublesome for example for a Quezon City, Makati or San Juan resident to go all the way to Bocaue, Bulacan and take the bus going to Central and Northern Luzon. Bocaue toll plaza is one of the most congested areas and having an integrated bus system in its vicinity will entail more cost and inconvenience to the working masses.
Aside from the compounding issues of the commuters, an estimated 4,100 number of Provincial buses, and about 8,200 displaced bus drivers is expected and will be out of employment. Provincial Buses will be replaced by Metrobuses, UV Express and Transportation Network Vehicle Service (TNVS), the projected reduction in volume of public utility vehicles will not happen and may even increase congestion on the road. Traffic might even be worst and will cause more inconvenience to the riding public.
Before pursuing any permanent plans on the construction of a 5 Billion peso integrated bus system beside the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan, we challenge the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and Department of Transportation (DOTr) to conduct feasibility studies and cost benefit analysis and include the stakeholders in a dialogue. Fast tracking the construction of an integrated bus system in the Philippine Arena is premature and anti – working class. We would like to remind the Duterte administration to prioritize the needs of the commuting public from Central and Northern Luzon which number up to 10 million commuters every month.
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