MMDA calls for expansion of EDSA's capacity to handle more vehicles

January 21, 2013 4:31 am 

MANILA, Jan. 20 –- The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Sunday stressed the Department of Public Works and Highway (DPWH) should not only rehabilitate the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) but likewise expand its capacity to handle more vehicles.

MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino made the call as he said the rehabilitation plan of the DPWH will be tackled during the Metro Manila Council(MMC)meeting scheduled this coming week.

The MMC is the policy-making arm of the MMDA and is composed of the 17 mayors of Metro Manila.

Tolentino said one way of increasing EDSA vehicle capacity would be the construction of flyovers at strategic parts of the highway. However, it will be up to the DPWH what their plans are, he said.

The 12-lane highway, six for each portion (south and north-bound) is the busiest roadway in Metro Manila and it passes through the cities of Caloocan, Quezon City, San Juan, Mandaluyong, Makati and Pasay.

DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson said the P3.4 billion rehabilitation project is now on its final stage of planning.

The project which is aimed at improving EDSA will involve the concrete re-blocking and asphalt overlaying of certain portions of the highway from Balintawak to Roxas Boulevard.

For his part, Danilo Idos, director of the DPWH-Urban Road Projects Office, said they will begin the rehabilitation of the 23-kilometer stretch of EDSA, from Roxas Boulevard to Monumento, in June this year.

He said they are still finalizing details on some aspects of the project and that it may take six months before they implement the repairs.

Idos said that aside from the traffic management plan that would be submitted to the MMDA, they would also need to seek the support of the Regional Development Council.

Meanwhile, Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay supported the call of MMDA for DPWH to first discuss its plan to conduct a year-long repair of EDSA starting this June.

Binay said closing portions of EDSA for the repair should be taken up with the MMC considering the huge impact it would cause to vehicular traffic.

“We should all sit down and talk about this project, and then we come up with a decision. All those affected, particularly the LGUs (local government units), should know what to do so we would all be ready,” Binay said.

The DPWH has been making selective repairs along EDSA, but it has never embarked on a major rehabilitation of the primary thoroughfare in Metro Manila.

Idos said the planned rehabilitation of EDSA is part of the preparation for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, which the Philippines will be hosting in 2015. (PNA)

PDS/CLTC

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