Baguio is pilot area for low carbon urban transport system

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BAGUIO CITY – The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Department of Transportation (DOTR) selected Baguio City as one of the pilot cities in the country for the implementation of their joint project on the promotion of the low carbon urban transport system geared towards significantly reducing pollutants in the city’s air by embracing environmentally-friendly mass transport system.

UNDP and DOTR officials were in the city recently purposely to brief city officials on the project that is aimed at providing interested local governments with the needed technical assistance and linkage with interested private sector partners for the putting in place of the low carbon urban transport system beneficial to the present and future generations of city residents.

However, the local government was required to first formulate its Local Public Transport Route Plan (LPTRP) that will serve as a basis to rationalize the different public transport routes in the city and the applicable low carbon mass transport system that will be put in place in the city.

Earlier, the DOTR required all local governments in the country to formulate their respective LPTRP that will be the basis in the determination of the opening of additional routes and provision of additional public utility transport vehicles pursuant to the government’s Public utility vehicle modernization program.

The local government also submitted to the DOTR its expression of intent through an approved city council resolution to avail of the benefits of the project considering that one of the priorities of the present administration is to establish an effective and efficient mass transport system.

Among the low carbon urban mass transport system being eyed in the city include the cable car system and the monorail system or a combination of both in feasible areas in the different parts of the city to provide convenient and stress-free travel around the city for both the residents and tourists alike.

The UNDP-DOTR joint project on the low carbon urban transport system is expected to end by December next year, thus, studies on the feasibility of the operation of electric jeeps or hybrid jeeps among others must have to be completed to ascertain the eventual presence of the mass transport system in the cities that stand to benefit from the project.

Both institutions will be commissioning a firm that will undertake the required transport system for the city by next year to determine the most feasible mass transport system that will be put in place so that the linkage with the appropriate private sector partner will be established to allow the project to push through even with the impending commencement of the project by the end of next year considering that the DOTR will still pursue the provision of technical and financial assistance to local governments that are inclined to pursue the establishment of mass transport systems in their areas of jurisdiction.

One of the recommended solutions to address the city’s worsening traffic congestions, especially within the central business district area, is the establishment of an efficient mass transport system that will also serve as one of the major tourist attractions in the city.

By Dexter A. See
Photo by Armando M. Bolislis

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