Davao dad mulls new odd-even scheme

Jul. 03, 2009

DAVAO CITY — Councilor Peter Lavia has passed a resolution which proposes a landmark odd-even traffic scheme for the city’s major thoroughfares, similar to the one previously practiced in Metro Manila.

According to Lavia’s proposal, on certain days of the week, only vehicles with plate numbers ending in odd integers will be allowed in major city streets; on other days, only even -plate vehicles will be allowed.

The councilor said the proposal stems from the rising number of vehicles in the city that cannot be accomodated because there is no significant infrastructure expansion, such as multi-level streets. The councilor foresees the existing road system would eventually lead to traffic congestion.

“About 80 percent of Davao’s vehicles are privately owned,” Lavia said. With an increasing population, he anticipates a proportional increase in the number of vehicles.

Lavia cites that J.P Laurel (formerly Bajada) Street may soon experience traffic jams with the opening of the Ayala mall and the planned SM development in the former Lanang Golf and Country Club. He also cited that McArthur Highway south of the city is already clogged with vehicles.

“The time will come when our roads will be congested,” Lavia said. He said there must be a plan to decongest the streets, thus, his proposal to implement an odd-even traffic scheme.

The scheme will be implemented on the city’s busiest strips but will excempt public utility vehicles. Lavia says this is also an effort to mitigate climate change, as less vehicles plying the city’s streets would mean less pollution.

Lavia says that vehicles are the number one contributors of greenhouse gases which exacerbate the effects of climate change. (PIA XI)

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