^

Opinion

EDITORIAL - The problem is not infrastructure but attitude

-

There is little to argue against the lecture given by former Bogota, Colombia mayor Enrique Peñalosa about the successful ways in which he was able to solve the traffic problems of his city.

Peñalosa was invited to Cebu City to talk about the Bus Rapid Transit system in place in the capital of Colombia, the second South American city that seems to have fascinated Cebu traffic officials. The first one was Curitiba, Brazil which has a unique bus operation.

There is little to argue because one cannot argue against the evidence. The Bus Rapid Transit system does work in Bogota, just as the Curitiba bus experiment works in that city. If anything, there is only one possible argument that can be posed at this time.

And that argument is whether the Bogota and Curitiba experiments, so successful in their own places, can be introduced and then induce the same kind of success here, given our own unique kind of circumstances.

For instance, the proposal of Peñalosa to introduce bigger spaces for sidewalks instead of wider roads for cars will not work in Cebu or in any other urban center in the Philippines. Clearly, Peñalosa was not properly appraised of the Filipino psyche before his talk.

It was very clear that Cebu officials never told Peñalosa beforehand that roads in the Philippines are not exclusively used as passageways of vehicles but also double as private garages.

And it was also very clear that no one among our officials told the former Bogota mayor that sidewalks in the Philippines are no longer used for pedestrians to walk on but as places of commerce. He was clearly not made aware that pedestrians compete with cars for road space.

Had these facts and circumstances been made available to Peñalosa for his digestion before he came, chances are great he would have declined the invitation. He would have realized coming here was a fool's errand.

Before anyone embarks on any plan to improve our traffic situation, let us first know what our problem really is. Our problem is not really about infrastructure although we need vast improvement there. Our real problem is attitude. 

ALOSA

BOGOTA

BOGOTA AND CURITIBA

BUS

BUS RAPID TRANSIT

CEBU

CEBU CITY

CURITIBA

ENRIQUE PE

NTILDE

SOUTH AMERICAN

  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Recommended
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with