Projects and promises

ARE WE THERE YET? - Back Seat Driver (The Freeman) - June 2, 2014 - 12:00am

Last February, our friends at the public works department boldly announced a multi-million infrastructure project that would benefit the wannabe-Kapitolyo city.  They talked about drainage repair projects that would help alleviate the city’s flooding problem, road rehabilitation and overpass repair projects and the construction of center islands on the road heading towards the first bridge that connects diaper island.  They gave out project timelines to give the general public a good idea, on when these projects will start and how long we’d have to grin and bear with the disruption brought about this very ambitious venture.

First off, I’d like to tip my hat to them for finally realizing that repair and rehabilitation projects are best done during the summer season.  Not only is traffic volume lower because students are on break, but repairs, in theory, finish faster because bonding agents and concrete dry faster because of the scorching summer sun.  Again, this is all theoretical because most of the workers would rather stay in the shade than to sweat it out under the sweltering heat.  And I cannot blame them too. Why would you want to stay out in the sun for hours on end while waiting for your turn to use the one and only shovel that the company could afford to purchase after having to allegedly pay off all the kumpares, who helped award the project to the company?  In a perfect world, all of the workers would’ve been given one set of tools each and these projects would be done on time.

Speaking of  “on time,”  the public works department made mention that these projects were set to start in March or April.  I guess they have a totally different calendar since I have yet to see some drainage projects start.  In their calendar, it’s probably the start of March since they just started tearing apart the road heading towards the bridge to begin their center island project.  This project, which is predicted to be completed in 80 days, will finish just in time for school to start in their calendar.  But in the real world, students and motorists will be greeted with one of the worst traffic jams this wannabe-big city has ever encountered once school opens this week.  And since the public works department says this project will take 80 of their calendar days, we’re looking at terrible traffic for the rest of the year.

On the subject of terrible traffic, I have to find out what this pretender city’s traffic chief is smoking since he did not find the need to implement rerouting schemes despite the multiple projects that the public works department said it would undertake.  Apparently, his excuse for not putting up detour signs is that the repair projects won’t take up the entire street.  Did he stop to think about how amazingly asinine this idea is?  Without road repairs, these roads get incredibly jammed during rush hour.  What more when a normally six-lane road gets reduced to two-lane due to road repairs?  I believe someone has to tell him to stop hanging out with the same people who continue to delude themselves with the thought that the city they run deserves to be a Kapitolyo.

The regional public works and the traffic department of this city should wake up and get their act together.  Not only are they making outrageous promises they can’t keep, they should actually take time to look at the real picture and provide solutions that would work.  Adding more clueless traffic enforcers and telling people to obey non-existent traffic signs is not the way to go.  backseatdriver_ph@yahoo.com

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