Solon bats for mass transit solution to traffic woes

April 23, 2024 People's Tonight 160 views

SENATE Deputy Majority Leader Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito recently said there is no solution to the urban traffic woes other than the development of the country’s mass transit system.

Ejercito, who also chairs the Senate Committee on Urban Planning, Housing and Urban Development, said the country needs to act fast on its mass transit program as the roads in key metropolitan areas become increasingly congested. He called attention to the entry of “an estimated 300,000 additional vehicles into our roads each year”.

“This would mean an additional one million new vehicles vying for constricting road spaces in three years’ time,” Ejercito explained.

Ejercito lamented the fact that the country has lagged behind its ASEAN neighbors in terms of transportation infrastructure development. “Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are 30 years ahead of us when it comes to transportation infrastructure,” he pointed out.

“This is why we have been pushing for the modernization of our transportation system, particularly railways,” Ejercito said.

He mentioned in particular the North South Commuter Railway project and the Metro Manila Subway Project.

The NSCR is the 147-kilometer railway system which will connect Calamba City in the south with the New Clark City in the north. It will pass through several stations in Metro Manila using the existing Philippine National Railways line. It will feature an Airport Express service which will use high-speed trains to bring passengers to the New Clark International Airport.

Funded by the Japan International Cooperation Program and the Asian Development Bank, the construction of the NSCR has started in the Metro Manila section of the project following the suspension of PNR train operations from Valenzuela to Alabang.