Cebu: Flyover/Overpass Capital in the Philippines? - Lazy Investing Way

Hot

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Cebu: Flyover/Overpass Capital in the Philippines?

If you want a free roller coaster ride/tourist attraction..you can pass by these
There has been this debate lately here in Cebu between multiple sectors and LGUs regarding which is a more sustainable solution: Flyover/Overpass vs. Road Widening (or a proper City Transportation Urban Development Plan). This issue also led me to wonder is Cebu: Flyover/Overpass Capital in the Philippines? Read further for my thoughts on this..

First and foremost, I educated myself regarding this issue; I joined an Educational Forum regarding this issue by Permaculture Cebu; read Print Media articles, updates and opinions about it, asked people in my network and also tried to put my shoes in a government officials shoes.

What's an Flyover/Overpass?
It is a bridge, elevated roadway, railway or similar structure that crosses over another road or railway in order to avert or reduce traffic. Similarly, a smaller version of it is a pedestrian overpass allows pedestrians safe crossing over busy roads without impacting traffic.

The Curious case of the Talisay and Mambaling Flyovers:
Why pick-on these southern flyovers? Well I pass by these two whenever I go to the City from the town of Minglanilla.
On Mambaling  flyover
Quick Facts: This area is not necessarily an intersection but is a national road which has an access road to colon, inayawan and to SRP. Before SRP this area did not really have any traffic problems, and I think even with the SRP this area's traffic woes is fairly manageable. Why? well if it is an off-peak hour, the area practically has no problems what-so-ever except for the occasional "PA-UGAT-AY" of TAXIs and JEEPNEYS or sometimes private vehicle owners and let's throw in the trucks into the mix as well!

My Analysis and VERDICT: 
  • Traffic Management lang ang solusyon ei...part of that is Commuters and Drivers education (Road Etiquette & Discipline--Educate commuters as to where to wait/ride the jeepney--it's not just the drivers that's contributing to the problem but kanang mga HILASON nga tapolan mulakaw na commuters..OK?).
  • Number of vehicles converging in an area at one time; this could be an area to look further into by our LGUs since what's the point of having flyovers and road widenings if the volume of vehicles of any type is not controlled.
  • In relation to that, alternative NATIONAL ROADs--seriously, usa rajud atong national road? (north/south)
  • Non-motorized transport modes such as walking and bicycling are environmentally friendly, cheap, and reasonably fast alternatives for trips up to 3.5 km in distance
On Talisay Flyover
Quick Facts: This area is a major road intersection connecting the upland and lowland parts of Talisay City--but is also a national road that connects to the southern towns. They say that part of flyover construction is road widening...why isn't this applied here? This flyover shows you when there are simply too many vehicles, it becomes useless since instead of reducing traffic, it's just being delayed from one end to another since the vehicles under the flyover has the same exit for the flyover vehicles.

My Analysis and VERDICT: 
  • Still Traffic Management but with a different approach since in any area or city, they have a different diversity of public transportation being used (In this area, you have habal2, tricycle, tri-sikad, multicabs, trucks and private vehicles and add to that the foot traffic of people).
  • Once again, control of types/number of vehicles
  • Alternative national roads...sigh


How about these Pedestrian Overpasses?
Okay, you're also picking on Pedestrian overpasses? YEP! they're alike and they depreciate too. Even students don't use them, maybe some of the time. The LGU could utilize them as advertising boards to counter the depreciating value but that's another story. Well safety is also an issue since parts of it are being looted to be sold as scrap..another thing to look into perhaps aside from it's UTILIZATION >_<

Let me give you my view as an Industrial Engineer (Applying what I know, I want to know the following~to really determine the overall impact and so-called benefits of the flyover?) to show the advantages, disadvantages and questionables or hidden costs:
THE ADVANTAGES:
“A flyover allows unimpeded crossing at an intersection as it eliminates dependence on traffic lights for vehicles using it and at the same time allows crossing for vehicles in the ground level. Motorists don’t have to suffer the long wait for their turn to cross, which happens if there is no flyover”--daw

DISADVANTAGES:
*Construction Phase: Transportation projects inevitably create disruptions in normal vehicle operations during the construction phase, creating delays for motorists or forcing them to take alternative routes. Construction delays may last from a few days to many months, and often require people to allow
more time for travel.
*Operation Phase: Utilization (It's most likely useful during peak hours of commuting..but that's it..)
*Environmental Factors: Does it reduce pollution? (Noise, Visual, Air); Quality of Life
*Socio-Cultural Considerations: Cebu is ASEAN CITY of CULTURE, how will it impact affected communities in the area?
*Economic Considerations: Affected business; diminished Land Value?

HIDDEN COSTS:
-Changes in Traveller's Costs?
-Change in Travel time? Savings? Or are we just delaying the traffic?
-Cost of Maintenance (Lighting, Road, Safety checks..and the like --for any structure like a building or a flyover--it depreciates) ~the Budget Php600Million is only for construction what about maintenance?
-Risk Management (This is a bloody structure, GOD forbid there's a MEGA-typhoon or earthquake, this becomes a BIG Expense [re-construction], therefore, you add this factor and the depreciating value--in accounting terms this is a big LIABILITY)
-Traveller Safety

Can you imagine if we had our street festivals, say the sinulog in a flyover? Hmm
Perhaps, I may not be an expert but I do believe from what I know, my questions do make some sense. The experts in this matter (Architects, Designers, Environmentalists, Lawyers and Urban Planners), who are part of the 'NO TO FLYOVER movement' are against this types of project; it's no longer a MAYBE for government officials to listen, it's a must since it's not their money in the 1st place, let alone their expertise; the experts are calling for an integrated master plan to address traffic congestion, exercising of road discipline, road widening, design technology adaptation and improvement of the existing traffic system.

As public servants, those who are in government have an obligation to listen to the wishes of the citizens and of course EXPERTS. So what, if there is already an approved budget & Bidding contracts? Is that a good enough reason to pursue it? MY DEAREST GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS, IF THERE'S A WILL THERE MUST BE A WAY!

Sometimes our government projects tends to focus on measuring/addressing the current situation, not on predicting effects of transportation projects or long range planning beyond their terms. But that's where we as citizens come in and exercise our right and execute our collective power and influence.

6 comments:

  1. I'd rather go for an underpass just like in Quezon Blvd or in Lagusnilad in Manila, same function with fly overs but minus the eye sore. What you think? 

    http://iloiloilove.com/

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, I am a bit interested with underpasses/tunnels..we have 1 in Cebu SRP..but I have no idea which one costs more though...

    ReplyDelete
  3. yeah, cities like seoul and chicago tore down their elevated skyways to let the light shine again on their down town. and to think DPWH is now proposing another skyway at EDSA, that would make metro manila a dark concrete jungle... 

    ReplyDelete
  4. i believe the mambaling fly over was built to reduce the present and future traffic congestion in that area. planners must have foreseen the increase of passing vehicles along the mambaling-srp access road when the SRP becomes fully developed. 

    ReplyDelete
  5. thought of that too, but it's still traffic during peak hours, and doesn't mitigate it at all..a physical structure I guess is not enough to solve a problem

    ReplyDelete
  6. Our Flyovers are a joke..its like built for nothing.. how bout... lets build a flyover with a same design with First World countries by which their flyovers has a multiple entry and exit points crossing above the roads but we have to widened our street for the this gigantic flyovers.. pretty sure this would ease up our congested streets! 

    ReplyDelete