Provincial Buses To Be Banned On Edsa Starting April

Starting April this year, provincial buses will no longer be able to use Edsa, according to the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

In a report by GMA News Online, MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia said that provincial buses will now only be allowed to drop off and fetch passengers at the designated intermodal terminals located at both north and south borders of Metro Manila.

As is usually the case when the MMDA declares something, this measure is supposed to decongest Edsa and improve traffic in the metro.

What is going to happen?

Based on the plans by the MMDA, buses coming from the north will end their trips at the Valenzuela Gateway Complex Central Integrated Terminal. Meanwhile, those who are coming from the south can alight at the proposed transport hub in Santa Rosa, Laguna.

From both endpoints, passengers on their way to Metro Manila can take the city buses to reach their destinations in the area.

In addition, the agency will also dismantle the provincial bus terminals along the country’s busiest thoroughfare. According to the MMDA, there are 46 terminals that will be eventually removed.

This isn’t the first time the government took a shot at the buses that travel to and from the provinces. Last year, they also tried to implement the same order, only to backpedal and issues a suspension on the order. However, the suspension was only temporary just to give time for the completion of the Valenzuela intermodal terminal.

(Read: Provincial Buses To Be Partially Banned On Edsa)

Terminal illness

The provincial bus ban is tied to three key terminals that will supposedly make commuting more convenient and alleviate the traffic woes of the public. Take note of the terminals to check if your commute might be affected.

1. Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange

First among the terminals is the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX), an intermodal transport hub located where Uniwide Sales Coastal Mall used to stand.

Envisioned as becoming the connecting hub to seamlessly make transportation between Metro Manila and the provinces of Batangas and Cavite much easier, it opened last November. However, issues have been plaguing the structure since it opened.

Just recently, Cavite Governor Jesus Crispin Remulla appealed to the government to allow the provincial buses coming from Cavite to “reach its terminal as indicated in its franchise, passing through PITX to drop off or pick up passengers.”

According to the governor, forcing the PUVs to end their trips at PITX just means additional travel time and expenses to the public. However, the Department of Transportation said in a statement that the buses still not using PITX are the ones that should be blamed, especially the drivers who still pick up and drop off passengers at Liwasang Bonifacio (Lawton).

2. Valenzuela Integrated Terminal

The integrated terminal in Valenzuela already opened last year. This terminal is supposed to be designed cater to 400 buses at a time. In addition to serving as a terminal for provincial and metro buses, the transportation hub will also host short-distance public transport modes like jeeps and tricycles. If implemented, the Valenzuela terminal must cater to almost 2,300 buses coming from the north.

3. South Integrated Terminal

For the southern provinces like Laguna and Batangas, their trips will end at the proposed South integrated transport system, a terminal that is planned to be opened at the border of Biñan and Santa Rosa.

According to DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade, the terminal will also be connected to the Mamplasan exit of the Cavite-Laguna Expressway. Unfortunately, there are no news yet regarding the completion of the project—or if it will even make it to the start of the ban on provincial buses on Edsa.

Sources: The Philippine Daily Inquirer, PNA, The Philippine Star