MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) confirmed on Thursday, November 17, that private vehicles will soon be allowed to pass through Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City to help ease traffic in the area.
The MMDA has yet to announce the effectivity date of the new scheme, but said private vehicle owners can start applying with Camp Aguinaldo for access passes on Monday, November 21.
Camp Aguinaldo officials shall have the prerogative to approve or disapprove the motorists' applications for access, according to MMDA.
When the new traffic scheme takes effect, the gates of the military camp will be open to traffic from 6 am to 10 pm within two weeks, the MMDA said.
Marine Col. Edgard Arevalo, chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Public Affairs Office, expressed his hope to help the public in such way that motorists coming from C5 and EDSA can now travel through these major thoroughfares with ease and comfort.
His only appeal for the private vehicle owners availing the access passses is to observe proper traffic rules and regulations inside the camp.
"Malugod po namin silang binibigyan ng pagkakataon na magamit ang ating kalsada sa Camp Aguinaldo at sa iba pa rin nating mga kampo in the future base sa patuloy nating agreements with them," Arevalo added. (We are rejoiced to give them the chance to use our roads in Camp Aguinaldo and other camps in the future, based on the agreements we have with them).
The MMDA and other government agencies under the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic (i-ACT) have been looking for private or enclosed areas along EDSA to be accessible to motorists as a temporary solution to the worsening traffic problem in Metro Manila.
In August, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade suggested that should Congress grant President Rodrigo Duterte emergency powers to solve Metro Manila's traffic problem, the Chief Executive should open up private subdivisions and villages to motorists. – with reports from Carmela Fonbuena/Rappler.com