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MMDA to continue clearing Mabuhay lanes until June next year

Mike Frialde (Philstar.com) - November 12, 2015 - 1:56am

MANILA, Philippines - The clearing of the identified alternate or “Mabuhay” lanes across Metro Manila will continue until the term of the present administration ends on June 30 next year, Secretary to the Cabinet and traffic czar Jose Rene Almendras said Thursday.

“We will continue until June 30, 2016. After that, it would be up for the next administration,” Almendras told reporters Thursday after his last “fine-tuning” meeting with officials of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on the traffic plan for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit that starts on Monday.

“There will be absolutely no parking on the Mabuhay lanes and on the other streets and lanes that we will be identifying. We must recover the roads while we wait for the infrastructure projects. One solution to solving the problem of traffic in Metro Manila is recovering the streets,” Almendras added.

The MMDA earlier said it would intend to clear all the identified Mabuhay lanes of illegally parked vehicles by Friday to allow motorists to use them during the APEC week when closures are expected on EDSA and on the other identified APEC routes.

Ed Lara, co-head of the MMDA’s “Task Force Mabuhay” earlier said they would try to clear all of the 17 designated Mabuhay lanes of obstructions and illegally parked vehicles. The MMDA said that as of Thursday, 134 illegally parked vehicles – mostly motorcycles – have been towed away from the cleared Mabuhay lanes since the drive started last November 2.

Meanwhile, MMDA chairman Emerson Carlos said members of the Mabuhay lane clearing teams would now be regrouped into “compact” units that would be closely assisted by police officers following the fatal shooting on Wednesday of a traffic enforcer of the Quezon City Department of Public Order and Safety (QC-DPOS) by a bank security guard during the clearing operation of a Mabuhay lane on West Avenue.

READ: Traffic enforcer shot dead by bank security guard

Enrique Fresnido, 60, was shot in the head by bank security guard Alex Batacan, after the traffic enforcer was attempting to seize the guard’s parked motorcycle.

“There were police officers present during the clearing but the members of the clearing team were scattered. We have now recalibrated our action so that the teams would be moving in a more compact manner,” said Carlos.

Carlos said that even as the MMDA will only go after illegally-parked vehicles on the Mabuhay lanes from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., vehicles are not allowed to park on the designated Mabuhay lanes on a 24-hour basis.

Carlos also urged business establishment owners along the designated Mabuhay routes to find proper parking spaces for their customers.

"Streets are not parking lots. I would suggest that they find other parking areas for their business," he said. 

ACIRC ALEX BATACAN ALMENDRAS ASIA-PACIFIC ECONOMIC COOPERATION ED LARA EMERSON CARLOS ENRIQUE FRESNIDO JOSE RENE ALMENDRAS LANES MABUHAY METRO MANILA
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