Cebu News

Starting today and coming days: Bridge traffic may get worse

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Heavy traffic is expected starting today for residents living in Lapu-Lapu City, following the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge repairs initiated by the Department of Public Works and Highways.

In yesterday’s situation, Frank Brazil, chief of City Traffic Management Systems, said the traffic was “light” because of the celebration of the Chinese New Year.

“Light ra ang traffic sa Lapu-Lapu kay wala’y klase ug wala’y trabaho. Anhi nato mahibaw-an ugma (Tuesday),” Brazil said.

Another reason why traffic was light in the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge was because it only allows vehicles headed to Lapu-Lapu City.

As of noon yesterday, vehicles were becoming stuck in traffic near the airport junction road and along the foot of the Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

Brazil said CTMS personnel assigned near the Marcelo Fernan Bridge were currently controlling the traffic flow at that time.

“(Atoa) nang gipangandaman tanan. Naa’y diversion road if ever bug-at ang traffic,” Brazil told reporters yesterday.

Now that the new bridge will serve as an “exit road” for the city residents going to their desired destinations, Brazil said the temporary access road for them will be the road in Sitio New Sangi,

Barangay Pajo going to Sitio Matumbo, Barangay Pusok situated behind the Lapu-Lapu City Hall.

The two-way diversion road is in place, and that traffic advisories were installed in strategic places as a guide for motorists.

The CTMS recently said they are deploying 18 enforcers to man the traffic during daytime while another 18 of them will be assigned at night.

Vehicles and motorist from Barangay Ibo, Mactan, and Buaya that want to go to the public market in Barangay Poblacion can pass by the diversion road aside from Manuel L. Quezon Highway.

He added that other vehicles from Barangay Basak and Pajo bound for the Mactan Economic Processing Zone can also pass by the said access road.

Mayor Paz Radaza also said that if the riding public wants to avoid traffic, they can use the ferry in the Port of Muelle Osmeña located in Barangay Poblacion, near the Virgen Dela Regla Parish. She also advised the public to leave their home early to avoid being caught up between rush hour traffic.

Mandaue also bracing

If yesterday the vehi-cular traffic was slow despite it being a holiday, Mandaue City’s traffic managers warned the public that traffic today and the coming days’ will likely be a worst-case scenario.

“Traffic gyud kaayo ron, holiday man ta. Pero tomorrow, mas grabe kay di naman holiday,” said Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue executive director Florentino Nimor yesterday.

Nimor said they had an operational meeting to discuss this situation and to find ways how to at least keep the traffic moving. He said they cannot promise faster traffic movement, but they will find ways to improve yesterday’s scenario.

The TEAM official admitted their office was bombarded by complaints from motorists and passengers since early morning, but they welcomed these saying it helps them improve what needs improving.

The road repair of the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge was started yesterday, which means one lane was closed for the project. The repair is said to last for four to six months, but Nimor said that since it is a complex undertaking, which does not only concern the lanes, they are hoping that the actual road repair will be completed within four months.

This means that for the next four months the motorists and the passengers will have to go through the congested road in UN Avenue in Mandaue City.

Nimor said the traffic is worsened by the ongoing road repair in Plaridel Street and the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines project in A. Soriano Street. These roads connect to A.C. Cortes, leading to and from the already congested Mandaue-Mactan Bridge.

He said last Friday, the traffic was normal at around 11 p.m., even if it was only yesterday that the Man-daue-Mactan Bridge’s one lane was closed. He said “as it is” or even without the road repairs the traffic is already worse due to the volume of vehicles that use these major routes, hence he appealed to the public to be patient and “anticipate” congestion heading out to their destinations earlier.

He also blamed the public utility jeepneys that pick up passengers just anywhere along the road, thereby creating further traffic. He said within this week, they will be tapping barangay tanods to assist them in keeping the traffic going.

He said they are also set to apply a zipper lane in one of the three open lanes in Plaridel Street.

Nimor also appealed to PLD Construction, which is undertaking the NGCP project, and PB Obial (Pla-ridel Street  road concreting), to work 24/7 as promised.

“When we checked the roads last night, mangatug ra man hinuon na sila. Asa na man to ilang saad nga 24/7 ilang trabaho?” said Nimor.

He added that nighttime should have been the best time to do road works as there is less vehicular traffic. — /BRP (FREEMAN)

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