8 downtown roads off limits to vehicles
Kristine B. Quintas (The Freeman) - January 14, 2015 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - At least eight major roads in the downtown area of Cebu City will be off limits to vehicles starting tomorrow because of the city government’s “pedestrianization” program.

The people will have to endure walking until Sunday because the portion of the streets located near the city’s historical landmarks will be closed from vehicle traffic.

These include M.C. Briones, D. Jakosalem, Lapu-Lapu, Burgos, Legaspi Extension, Mabini Extension, Manalili, and Magallanes streets.

“Now, everyone is encouraged to walk just like people in Rome when the image of Blessed Pedro Calungsod was brought for canonization. They did it there and so we can. We will do it here,” Mayor Michael Rama said. 

Rama said he wants to observe how the scheme works through a dry run this afternoon.

South-bound motorists and passengers are advised to pass F. Gonzales Street, Plaridel Street and Quezon Boulevard.  Those north-bound vehicles can traverse S. Osmeña Boulevard to M.J. Cuenco.

He said V. Rama Avenue and B. Rodriquez Street can be utilized for motorists going to Oprra, Kalunasan, Lahug, and Barangay Apas.

Rama said Plaza Sugbo ground will be closed for parking. Areas surrounding the Compania Maritima near the Senior Citizens’ Park and Magellan’s Park will serve as parking area. He said department heads and city officials can park their cars along M.C. Briones.

 The mayor directed the City Traffic Operations Management to add more street signages and proper dissemination on the alternative routes while the “pedestrianization” is in effect.

Preservation

 If successful, Rama said the “pedestrianization” scheme might institutionalized knowing that it will help “preserve” city’s historical landmarks and infrastructures, such as Magellan’s Cross, Sto. Niño, Malacañang sa Sugbo, among others.

 He said Cebu City is a metropolis the center of “historical-cultural tourism” which he likened to a ‘Bermuda triangle.’

“Pedestrianization will address the issue of preservation and decongestion of traffic. There would be avoidance of the continuity persistence of vehicle movement, which may affect the structural integrity of our historical infrastructures,” he said.

 “It is proven effective, successful and really good to promote and what we want to preserve,” he added.

 The concept is also supported by the Augustinian priests. Basilica rector Fr. Jonas Mejares earlier explained that the dust and vibration on the road caused by vehicles passing along Osmeña Boulevard can contribute to the deterioration

BARANGAY APAS BLESSED PEDRO CALUNGSOD BRIONES CEBU CITY CITY CITY TRAFFIC OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT COMPANIA MARITIMA GONZALES STREET RAMA
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