By Mario Casayuran
Senator Richard J. Gordon expressed dismay Saturday at the crippling traffic along EDSA and other roads in Metro Manila costing P3.5-billion a day in lost opportunities.
Gordon said this is partly caused by malls being located along highways and roads. This triggers monstrous traffic jams, he pointed out.
“Traffic in Metro Manila continues to get worse, now it cost about P3.5-billion a day. Other cities in the country are now having traffic problems too. This problem is caused by the malls built by rapacious, greedy, avaricious, predatory and opportunistic people who take unfair advantage of the country’s infrastructures and corrupt officials who allow them. If you notice, all malls are located in high traffic density areas,” he stressed.
The Philippine office of the aid agency Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has reported that the worsening traffic in Metro Manila now costs P3.5 billion in lost opportunities per day, and highlighted the need for new and modern infrastructure to ease congestion.
To ease traffic, according to Gordon, it is important to have a well-planned city with proper land-use plan, with community centers, with malls and other recreation facilities, built in the middle of the townships and not along highways.
“It’s about time that this country plans its cities right. In other countries, you cannot see malls along the highways – they are built in the middle of the town and people flocking to the malls do not cause traffic to grind to a halt. Dito sa atin, nasa tabi ng highway ang malls kaya ang traffic hindi umaandar. Dapat hindi pinapayagan na magtayo ng malls along highways and national roads,” he said. (In our country, malls are beside highways causing traffic to move at a snail pace. The malls should not have been allowed to be built there in the first place.)