In order to provide viable measures to address the worsening traffic condition in Cagayan de Oro City and to generally contribute to the climate change adaptation and mitigation, a Sustainability Mobility Project (SMP) has been adopted and implemented by the Climate Change Commission (CCC) together with the Philippine Business for the Environment (PBE) in the City that calls for cooperation and partnership between the government and private sectors.
The SMP framework shall include the final combinations of suitable mobility solutions that will be adopted in the City; the areas of deployment, financing mechanisms, time frame, infrastructure, and policy solutions. It shall be complementary to the City’s overall long-term development plan and the respective development plans of all concerned agencies, (e.g the Department of Public Works and Highways, Land Transportation Office, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, National Economic and Development Authority).
Since Cagayan de Oro is a developing part of the country and has been dubbed as the Manufacturing Hub, Logistics Hub, and Center of Trade and Commerce in Northern Mindanao; and proposed to be the 4th Metropolitan Center by 2025, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) sees that the SMP will impact everybody especially the movement of people and goods. The Investors Forum on 13 November 2019 served one of the venues to bring in all “actors.” The said event was attended by Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar S. Moreno, NorMin Regional Governor of PCCI, Ma.Teresa Alegrio, CCC Deputy Executive Director Asec. Romell Antonio O. Cuenca, among other dignitaries.
“Importante ang unity of purpose. Magbayanihan tayong lahat at walang problema,” remarked by Mayor Moreno during his speech after the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement/Declaration of Partnership among CCC, CDO-GU, PCCI, and PBE.
Previously, series of workshops and stakeholder’s consultation sessions were conducted since the launching of SMP-CDO on 19 January 2018, which were actively participated by various government agencies, private companies, civil organizations, and the academe. From these activities, three (3) sets of solutions were identified to address the traffic congestion problem: 1) Road Clearing Solutions- clearing of streets and sidewalks from all types of obstructions, including improperly parked vehicles and informal vendors. Displaced vendors will be provided with conducive spaces for their business and customers in partnership with the City LGU and other organizations; 2) Policy Review Solutions- amending or repealing existing road/traffic policies, or establishing new ones that will address the current mobility issues and concerns such as on parking and building setbacks; 3) Infrastructure and Alternative Transport Solutions- deal with actual infrastructure development.
During the said forum, various proposals and/or programs were presented under each solution for which the participants can raise comment/suggestions/recommendations. For the Road Clearing Solutions, proposals included construction of green space for active transport (walking and biking), walkable markets, and Lunhaw Project from a portion in Divisoria to the CDO riverbanks; For the Policy Review Solutions were the PUV Modernization Program and Transportation Master Plan of LTFRB; and for Infrastructure and Alternative Transport Solutions— bike lanes, road diets, e-vehicles, P2P buses, and a gondola system.
PPA-PMO MO/C Projects to decongest road traffic
The Port Management Office of Misamis Oriental/Cagayan de Oro through the support of the top Management of Philippine Ports Authority, has completed two (2) major projects under its 7 Pillars of Development in 2019 which are aimed at decongesting the roads towards the Port of Cagayan de Oro, among other purposes: the Port of Opol and the Cargo Gate Complex at the Port of Cagayan de Oro.
With the development and construction of the Port of Opol, vessels carrying cargoes coming from the western part of Misamis Oriental have been diverted from the Port of Cagayan de Oro, thereby decongesting the said Port and has since aid in the reduction of travel time of cargo delivery. Since cargo trucks may not anymore proceed to Baseport to deliver/transport/load cargoes, traffic along entry/exit points has noticeably eased. Likewise, the Cargo Gate Complex was constructed to provide 6-lane controlled access to port users, eliminate long queuing lines at the entry point, and help decongest the traffic along the access roads towards the cargo gates. —- By IMR Lam