Resolution urging DOTr to increase PUV seating capacity filed in Congress

Marje Pelayo   •   December 16, 2020   •   343

MANILA, Philippines — A resolution was filed on Wednesday (December 16) in the House of Representatives (HOR) urging the government to allow an increase in the seating capacity of public utility vehicles (PUV) and to defer the implementation of the cashless transaction in expressways.

The House Committee on Transportation submitted its report and recommendations on how to address the problems in public transport.

House Resolution 1409 urges the DOTr to increase the number of roadworthy public utility vehicles to address the transportation shortage.

Committee Chairperson Representative Edgar Sarmiento explained that during the period of interpellation and debate earlier that the resolution was primarily for jeepneys.

The lawmaker noted that public utility vehicles already have barriers installed in the seats so full capacity may be allowed subject to health protocols implemented by the Inter-Agency Task Force.

The increase in the seating capacity of PUVs will also help the economy to recover.

He added that operators are complaining about their losses during the past months of the pandemic.

“Sana naman kami nakikiusap na kung may barriers lang pwede na po siguro na magkaroon na ng full capacity basta may plastic barriers,” asked Committee Chair Rep. Edgar Sarmiento.

Meanwhile, the Committee also urged the DOTr, through the House Resolution 1417, to defer the implementation of the cashless transaction in expressways to January next year.

Sarmiento said that operators should address the issues floated during the previous implementation such as heavy traffic.

Speaker Allan Velasco previously urged the DOTr to move the full implementation of the cashless transaction to March 2021. MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

DOTr, PPA to inaugurate new passenger building terminal of Tagbilaran Port on April 14

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) will inaugurate the new Passenger Terminal Building (PTB) of the Port of Tagbilaran.

The inauguration is scheduled for April 14 which will also be the formal start of the terminal’s operations.

“The completion of the development project is an important milestone for Tagbilaran City’s main seaport after it sustained significant structural damage from a strong earthquake in 2013,” the DOTr said in a statement.

The newly-completed PTB will augment the passenger capacity of the Port of Tagbilaran to further provide the public with more comfortable and convenient sea travel. It can accommodate 613 additional passengers, bringing the total capacity to 1,110.

In addition to the completed two (2)-story Passenger Terminal Building, the PPA also constructed a pump house, installed concrete pavements, and built lamp post foundations at the port. AAC

PUVs in NCR Plus to operate at 50% during ECQ – DOTr

Robie de Guzman   •   March 29, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Public Utility Vehicles (PUVs) will still be allowed to operate at a reduced capacity during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the National Capital Region (NCR), Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, called NCR Plus, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said.

The DOTr said that PUVs include public utility buses, UV Express Service, public utility jeepneys, shuttle service, tricycles, taxis, and transport network vehicle service (TNVS).

Under the guidelines for the road transport sector issued on Sunday, PUVs are allowed to operate at 50% capacity, excluding the driver and the conductor.

Passengers shall observe the one-seat apart rule, and that no standing passengers will be allowed, the DOTr said.

Provincial buses will be allowed to enter borders with only essential workers as passengers, provided that they will operate at point-to-point trips, it added.

For UV Express service, only a maximum of two passengers per row will be allowed and the vehicle should not exceed 50% of its capacity. Only one passenger will likewise be allowed on the driver’s row.

Taxis and TNVS are also required to only allow two passengers per row and 1 passenger on the driver’s row.

Shuttle service vehicles are also allowed but strict physical distancing or the one-seat apart rule, will be observed, as well as sanitary practices mandated by the Department of Trade and Industry and the Department of Labor and Employment.

For tricycles, only one passenger will be allowed to ride in the side-car and no passenger shall be seated right beside/behind the driver, the DOTr said.

The operations of tricycles shall be approved by the Department of Interior and Local Government and respective LGUs, in compliance with the existing policies on its operational limitations, it added.

The department also said motorcycle taxis will be allowed to operate, but only for those considered as authorized persons outside of residence (APOR).

Illegal motorcycle taxi services or “habal-habal” will be apprehended, the DOTr warned.

Free rides for medical frontliners will also be sustained during the ECQ in consideration of the decrease in the capacity of PUVs due to physical distancing measures, the department said.

“Non-Motorized Transport and Personal Mobility Device are encouraged, such as bicycles, provided that the rider will strictly abide by the physical distancing measures imposed by the Department of Health,” it added.

The DOTr said personnel from the Land Transportation Office, Philippine National Police, Armed Forces from the Philippines, and other concerned agencies will be deployed to conduct daily random inspections of PUV operations, offices, terminals, and depots to ensure strict compliance with the service, sanitary, and operational requirements.

The ECQ covering the NCR Plus is effective from March 29 to April 4.

LRT-MRT Common Station approaching 50% completion — DOTr

Marje Pelayo   •   March 24, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) on Wednesday, March 23, announced that the LRT-MRT Common Station that would link the Light Rail Transit (LRT) with the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) is around 50 percent complete.

In its latest Facebook post, the DOTr said the overall progress rate of the common station project now stands at 48.48 percent.

The project, which started some seven years ago, is targeted to be completed in December 2021.

The common station features a 13,700-square meter “concourse area,” which will “seamlessly interconnect” the rail lines of LRT-1, MRT-3, MRT-7, and the much-awaited Metro Manila Subway.

The project is expected to ease mobility of commuters in Metro Manila, particularly along the main transit routes, from Baclaran to Monumento to the entire length of EDSA.

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