When the news about banning solo-occupied vehicles on EDSA first came up, it was a consensus between the city and lone municipality mayors, otherwise known as the Metro Manila Council (MMC). MMC is also the policy-making body of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
With that, MMDA formed the Regulation No. 18-005, which employs the ban on single-occupied vehicles on EDSA during rush hours, also known as the High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Traffic Scheme. It received mixed reactions from motorists and netizens alike, for one major reason, among others: it will just divert the traffic to alternate routes and side streets.
The plot thickened, though, as on the dry run's first day, the Senate submitted a resolution to suspend the said traffic scheme. The resolution was signed by the Senate President Vicente Sotto III and other three senators, and contains several reasons as to why the HOV Traffic Scheme won’t work in our country.
Reasons include the comparison to similar HOV Traffic Scheme models that failed in other countries, lack of public consultation, and deprivation to use our country’s major thoroughfare, among others.
Now, the saga continues as MMDA announced that it will temporarily suspend the full implementation of the HOV Traffic Scheme on EDSA, which was originally scheduled on August 23, 2018. The agency advised that it will resume with the implementation when MMC convenes about the matter.
Here's the catch: it’s important to note that we’re still in the middle of the policy’s dry run, which will end on August 22, 2018. Per MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia, the dry run will continue, until MMC says otherwise. Guess the ball is back to the MMC’s hands again.
"So, for now, we will hold (the implementation) then the council will vote. I don't want to preempt our mayors," said Garcia in a televised press conference.
The HOV Traffic Scheme bans solo-occupied vehicles on EDSA from 7:00 to 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., Mondays through Fridays.