Edsa Decongestion, MRT-4 Construction, Bye-Bye Volkswagen Beetle, And Other Motoring Stories

Motoring News Philippines

Villar says Edsa traffic to improve by 30 percent this year

Is there hope left for Edsa? Apparently, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar would like to think so.

According to the official, the completion of vital infrastructure this year will mean that vehicular flow in Edsa will improve by up to 30 percent. Villar refers to the Skyway Stage 3 and the NLEX Harbor Link Segment 10, targeted to open in April and March, respectively.

“That’s a one-two punch for 2020,” Villar said.

“We are projecting the Skyway Stage 3 to relieve Edsa of over 100,000 cars. Harbor Link will decongest the highway of 30,000 vehicles, most of which are trucks. [A truck is] equivalent to almost five cars.”

In addition to projects to be completed this year, Villar said that the decongestion rate will go up to 40 percent once the Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge reopens and the Santa Monica-Lawton Bridge becomes completed.

(Read: Higher Fuel Excise Tax Now In Effect, Whether We Like It Or Not)

Motorcycle taxi TWG slams Angkas’ reported foreign ownership issue

The “Angkas saga” gets dirtier by the day. This time, the government hits back at the leading motorcycle TNC’s foreign ownership.

According to the technical working group (TWG) that oversees the pilot run of motorcycle taxis, Angkas operator DBDOYC Inc. goes against the foreign ownership laws in the Philippines.

Based on the documents from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), 99 percent of the company is owned by Singaporean Angeline Tham.

In a statement, the TWG said that Angkas is openly defying Philippine laws with its foreign ownership.

“In a blatant display of defiance and arrogance, note how Angkas or DBDOYC did not disclose to the riding public that it is a 99% foreign-owned corporation, and is operating contrary to existing Philippine laws that common carriers should be at least 60% owned by Filipinos,” the TWG said.

According to the Foreign Investors Act of 1991, public service companies like transportation should strictly follow the 40-60 equity rule, meaning foreign ownership of a company should never exceed 40 percent.

Government green-lights MRT-4 project

If you’re tired of the crazy Ortigas Avenue traffic, your woes will be solved in a few years as the government has approved a train linethat will traverse that traffic-stricken highway.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) gave P53.9-billion Metro Rail Transit 4 (MRT-4) project a thumbs-up, a mass transit that will connect parts of Rizal to eastern Metro Manila.

According to Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade, the MRT-4 will decongest Ortigas Avenue by serving around 234,000 passengers coming from Rizal, specifically Antipolo, Cainta, Taytay, and other adjacent municipalities. The upcoming train line will also pass through the cities of Pasig, San Juan, Quezon, Mandaluyong.

“Considering how densely populated these areas are, which is made more difficult with the lack of road capacities and ever-worsening traffic conditions, MRT-4 will be of great help in moving commuters between eastern Metro Manila and Rizal,” Tugade said.

Although plans for Metro Manila railway networks indicate that MRT-4 will be connected to MRT-3 and LRT-2, no word yet from the government if it will come into fruition.

(Read: 2020 Car Buyers Guide: Upcoming Cars In The Philippines)

Volkswagen says goodbye to the iconic Beetle

After 70 years of production and numerous facelifts, German manufacturer Volkswagen will now retire the iconic Beetle—and it bade farewell with a touching tribute.

Dubbed “The Last Mile,” the 90-second animated commercial featured the famous model across multiple timelines while accompanied by a totally appropriate rendition of “Let It Be” by, appropriately enough, the Beatles.

The ad also showed cameos of pop culture icons tied to the Beetle such as Andy Warhol and Kevin Bacon.

By the end of the ad, the car triumphantly flew to the sky and turned into a bug, with VW leaving the message “where one road ends, another begins,” with a preview of an unidentified VW fascia closing the commercial.

As to what the mystery car is, though the company didn’t say anything, the headlight trim and the grille looks suspiciously similar to the fully electric ID.3, which started production last November.

Regardless, we will miss the Beetle. You might want to hold on to yours if you still drive one.