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Guidelines set for enforcement of Edsa bus ban

MANILA, Philippine — Transport regulators have finalized the guidelines for the impending closure of provincial bus terminals on Edsa despite the legal obstacles to the controversial policy that forced the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to shelve it for months.

Memorandum Circular No. 2019-31, signed on July 17, echoed President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent directive to the MMDA to “undertake immediate action to ensure the speedy and smooth flow of vehicular traffic” and for the Department of the Interior and Local Government to suspend mayors who refuse to heed his order.

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For the memorandum to take effect, however, local government officials, particularly in Quezon City and Pasay, must first enforce Metro Manila Council (MMC) Resolution No. 2019-002 which revokes all existing business permits for provincial bus terminals on Edsa.

MMDA traffic czar Bong Nebrija said in an interview that they would write to affected local officials within the week, asking them to abide by the MMC resolution.

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Approved by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, the memorandum also amends the routes of all provincial buses plying the busy thoroughfare.

Some 1,477 provincial buses coming from the north will now end their trips at Valenzuela Interim Terminal while over 880 south-based buses with terminals in Cubao will drop off their passengers at Sta. Rosa Interim Terminal.

On the other hand, 379 Pasay City-based buses coming from southern provinces can travel only up to Parañaque Interim Terminal Exchange.

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The memorandum also extends the routes of 446 city buses to the three terminals, allowing them to pick up passengers bound for Metro Manila, along with a corresponding fare adjustment.

Following a dry run, the ban on provincial bus terminals on MMDA was shelved after three lawmakers sought a temporary restraining order against the policy, saying it called for police powers that were outside the MMDA’s mandate.

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