On July 12, 2023, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) celebrated the grand opening of its cutting-edge Communications and Command Center (CCC). Nestled in the heart of Pasig City, this state-of-the-art facility marks a significant milestone for Metro Manila, propelling it towards the vision of becoming a smart metropolis, according to the MMDA. This new command center aligns with the current administration’s push for digitalizing government services.

Starting with the building itself, the facility comprises an operations center, data center, situation room, viewing room, media room, and power room. According to the MMDA, the center is equipped with new technologies, including high-definition closed-circuit television cameras, an intelligent traffic signalization system, and a Hytera radio smart dispatch system with built-in GPS.

The camera network consists of an impressive 403 high-tech CCTV cameras strategically placed throughout vital infrastructural points in the metro, which encompass MMDA pumping stations, bus bays, and waterways, as well as adaptive and sensor-based traffic lights. These cameras and the agency's fiber optic network facilitate real-time monitoring of vehicular flow. With the introduction of body-worn cameras on the MMDA’s field officers, the center also has the capability to access real-time video feed from body-worn cameras, adding an extra layer of surveillance and situational awareness to its operations.

"This is a major step for MMDA to make Metro Manila a safe and smart metropolis by using smart technologies and data analytics to aid the country into its economic development and strengthened security."
MMDA CCC Inauguration

In addition to its extensive surveillance capabilities, the command center also plays a crucial role in flood control. The CCC features a video wall system dedicated to flood control monitoring, providing essential information to both the Flood Control Information Center (FCIC) and the Effective Flood Control Operation System (EFCOS). 


Going back a bit on the MMDA’s surveillance systems, the agency says it plans to introduce Artificial Intelligence (AI) in its operations in the future. The MMDA adds that it will be installing a 45-km fiber optic cable which will hook up to CCTVs operated by NCR LGUs. These will then be linked to an AI program capable of vehicle classification and identification, and license plate and facial recognition. Does this mean the return of the No Contact Apprehension Program? Though the agency did not mention the NCAP during the inauguration, the introduction of AI recognition software is an indication that the program is making a return sometime in the future.

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