MABALACAT CITY – The new traffic scheme being implemented during rush hours from 6 to 9 am and from 4 to 8 pm at the Clark-Mabalacat Gate here was recently lauded by a businessman and hotelier in the city. Hotelier Alex Pineda said the new traffic scheme has considerably eased traffic in the city’s downtown area.
He noted the smooth flow of traffic in going to the Clark Freeport from the downtown area since Velasquez Street, which leads to Clark from he MacArthur Highway, has been designated a one-way street as part of the new traffic scheme.
Under the new traffic scheme, vehicles going out of the Clark Freeport are directed to the Velasquez Street extension which runs parallel to PNR railroad tracks and the Clark perimeter fence all the way to the MacArthur Highway past the public cemetery in Barangay San Francisco.
Businessman Joseph Ponce said there is a great improvement as compared from the old traffic scheme. “Etad ke iskwela ing anak ku napun. Maligwa ke milub (I brought my child to school yesterday. We quickly got in),” he said. Ponce lauded Morales for implementing the new traffic scheme.
“They should conduct more traffic experiments in other congested parts of the city like Dau,” he said. Rene Tolentino, farm manager of Sta. Maria Farm, also praised the new traffic scheme. He said there is some inconvenience for residents going home north of the city from Clark since they now have to go with the traffic flow to the Velasquez Street extension instead of going straight but it is only during rush hours.
It is a minor inconvenience as price in greatly easing traffic in the area, he said. Meanwhile, Mayor Marino “Boking” Morales said the traffic in the congested Dau area is now being studied and concerned agencies have been requested to contribute in easing the traffic congestion in the area. The mayor said the Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) have passed at least two resolutions to address the traffic problem in Dau.
These are the SP request urging concerned government agencies to pen the Clark-Dau gate that could serve as an alternate gateway to the freeport as well as the construction of the Clark-East Perimeter road that could link the town proper in Barangay San Francisco to SM City Clark.
Meanwhile, Mabalacat Traffic Enforcement Group (MTEG) chief Choock Santos said motorists welcomed the new traffic scheme. “Masanting ya masalese at buri dane reng commuters (It’s good and orderly and the commuters like it),” said Santos. However, Santos said he was ordered by Morales to bring back the old traffic scheme and just wait for the “Traffic Code” that will be enacted by the Sangguniang Panlungsod.