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MMDA to give EDSA carpooling another go on Aug 15

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MANILA — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is set to conduct its dry-run of the high occupancy vehicle lanes (HOVL) along Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (Edsa).

The dry-run will be held for one week starting August 15 from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. MMDA general manager Jojo Garcia said.

“Let us see for one week how the HOV scheme will work. We are calling on the participation of the public,” Garcia said in a press briefing on Friday.

Under the traffic scheme, vehicles with two or more occupants, including the driver, would be able to pass through Edsa using the HOVL.

The MMDA hopes that this will encourage carpooling among motorists as a means to further ease the traffic congestion in Metro Manila.

Garcia said the agency will be continuing clearing operations of alternative routes that may be used by vehicles once the traffic scheme is implemented.

The MMDA official called for understanding and cooperation among the public on the implementation of the policy.

“As part of the information drive, we will just inform and warn motorists about the HOV scheme,” Garcia said.

The MMDA will be using its closed circuit television cameras on Edsa to monitor traffic violators.

The agency sees the policy as a short term measure to address Metro Manila traffic amid ongoing construction of infrastructure projects that are being pursued under the “Build, Build, Build” program of the Duterte administration.

Around 60-70 percent of vehicles that pass along Edsa have only single occupants, according to data from the MMDA.

There are 367,738 vehicles traversing the major artery daily, 67 percent of which are private vehicles based on Edsa’s annual average daily traffic on 2017. (PNA)