DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The local government is looking to install new bus stops for two routes in the first phase of the implementation of the Davao Interim Bus System (DIBS) to address the need for an efficient public transport system.
Lawyer Tristan Dwight Domingo, Assistant City Administrator, shared they will pilot the DIBS to Catalunan Grande and Diversion Road routes with a total of 115 bus stops.
“These are just simple bus stops that will be put up from Catalunan Grande to the city (Central Business District) and the entire stretch of the diversion road,” Domingo said during Thursday’s I-speak Media Forum at the City Hall.
The completion of the said bus stops is eyed before 2019 ends. Php 100 million will be allotted for the first phase of project implementation, which will be taken from the Supplemental Budget 1 approved by the City Council last August.
Domingo explained that from the Php 100 million, Php 50 million will be allotted for the civil works, Php 20 million for the financial assistance of those that will be affected by the project, and Php 30 million for other activities that will complement the projects such as traffic lights.
The mentioned routes were chosen, according to Domingo, because they could not add much to the existing traffic congestion in the city.
He said Catalunan Grande has only 69 jeepney units compared to other areas, like Toril which has 400 jeepney units.
Assistance for affected jeepney drivers, operators
A group of jeepney drivers and operators, according to Domingo, are receptive to the initiative of receiving cash assistance as compensation.
“If we put these buses in place, we also have to do something with the jeepneys. We talked to the drivers and operators in Catalunan Grande area and they are receptive to the idea,” he shared.
The amount of compensation for affected drivers and operators is still being finalized. Other than cash assistance, the drivers will also receive help from government agencies like TESDA, CHED, DTI, and others for livelihood support.
“We will prioritize the cash assistance, but we will also pull assistance from other government agencies,” Domingo said.
The 69 jeepney units in Catalunan Grande will be replaced with 25 buses while 10 buses will be deployed in the Diversion Road.
Domingo called on all the Dabawenyos to be patient “as the city government is implementing plans to address the issue of public transportation.”
“We are fully aware that the same problems are being experienced by almost all areas outside the Central Business District. We receive the complaints mostly through social media, but we have to understand that there are processes that we have to undergo before we can implement projects,” Domingo said. (davaotoday.com)