Monstrous traffic jam PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 03 April 2018 13:53

LOOKING IN

BY ROD BALBON

A Chinese businessman from Jolo and now a resident of this city approached me last Sunday evening during the 80th birthday of Dra. Marian Lao at the Marcian Garden Hotel. He related to me about his daily ordeal in coping up with the worsening traffic conditions of the city. He said, it’s not only time-consuming but it also taxes your patience in driving through the jammed streets of Veterans Avenue daily.

Well, it’s also a common experience when driving through Gov. Camins Road, the Canelar-Sta. Maria stretch and the San Jose-Baliwasan Roads. I told him that this is just the beginning. In a few years time, this traffic problem will worsen.

He asked me if there is any measure or plan being undertaken by the city government to check this problem. To this, I couldn’t answer.

Unless the city government will devise ways and means to solve this, we will be in for a big problem in the very near future.

To alleviate this problem, the extension of the Nuñez Road to Gov. Ramos, Sta. Maria was constructed but has remained unfinished for many years now. This was built under the administration of Mayor Beng Salazar. Other than this, we haven’t heard any of her plan to open new roads.

Then we have heard the much-publicized project of Congressman Celso Lobregat to build two fly-overs at the junction of Veterans Ave. and MCCL Highway and at the junction of Canelar-Sta. Maria Roads. But up to now we haven’t seen the ground works being undertaken to signal the start of their construction. Their constructions will undeniably add to the worsening traffic congestion, but in the long run, they will greatly relieve us from this mess.

Now what if there are no new roads or flyovers are opened or built?

It is in this situation that our city council could come into play and help resolve this problem.

The city of London before was getting congested with so many people and its narrow streets are slowly being crammed and flooded by many vehicles. In solving this problem, the city government didn’t build new roads but their city council enacted an ordinance that banned the construction of “people centers” within the city. These people centers are establishments that attract many people such as shopping malls, schools, gymnasiums, churches, theaters and movie houses. These are only allowed to be constructed outside of the city perimeter. Up to now, no new people center is allowed to be constructed and the city’s traffic problem was solved, especially when the city continued to improve its underground railway system.

Our city council can likewise pass this kind of ordinance, banning the construction of “people centers”, to include the operation of bodegas in the city proper. In such manner, the city will be decongested and expended. By the way, a bodega ordinance was passed during the time of the late Mayor Cesar Climaco but it was never implemented for reasons he only knew. Presently, we have so many bodegas and warehouses located in the city that impede the flow of traffic.

Now we have heard that two big shopping malls will be constructed right within the city—SM, accordingly at Mindpro and Robinson’s and Gaisano at the burned area in Camino Nuevo near Ateneo. One could just imagine the magnitude of the traffic problem once these two shopping malls are constructed and start doing business. The present traffic problem now being experienced by us is undeniably due to the opening of KCC Mall de Zamboanga. Such condition is getting to be unbearable. We can’t afford three big shopping malls operating right within the city. This will be too much of a problem.  But it seems our city government has remained clueless and blind to this monstrous traffic problem.