DOTr eyes to privatize EDSA Busway

EDSA Busway Tramo station

In a bid to better serve the riding public, the leadership of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) revealed plans of privatizing the EDSA (Epifanio delos Santos Avenue) Busway.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • How many buses were fielded at the EDSA Busway during the holidays?

    Department of Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista said that during its peak, around 750 buses were fielded to provide service to as much as 400,000 passengers.
  • Until when is the feasibility study for the EDSA Carousel system's privatization?

    Bautista said that the study is still ongoing and is targeted to be completed by early next year.
  • Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista made the announcement as he vowed to improve the operations of the aforementioned public transport system.

    DOTr Secretary Jaime Bautista

    During an engagement with the press Wednesday, Bautista said that the feasibility study for the EDSA Carousel system is still ongoing and is targeted to be completed within the first quarter of 2023.

    He said that once the terms of reference are set, the department “will invite interested parties to participate in the bidding of the concession.” The terms of reference, Bautista explained, will determine the standards that the private sector must adhere to.  

    Further, he said that the bus system’s operations along the busiest thoroughfare in Metro Manila must conform to international standards.

    The concession will oversee the operations, maintenance of the stations and construction of the necessary infrastructures.

    DOTr Secretary Jaime Bautista

    Secretary Bautista cited the increase in volume of passengers patronizing the EDSA Busway as one of the reasons for improving its efficiency. “As more passengers are being catered by the busway system, we need to improve its efficiency,” he said.

    Bautista told Carmudi Philippines that on a normal day, the EDSA Carousel system caters to 330,000-350,000 passengers daily, but this holiday season, it went up by as much as 400,000 that utilized around 750 buses.

    However, the DOTr secretary said that the numbers would go down as the agency is still offering the Libreng Sakay (Free Ride) program under the Service Contracting Program, which will only last until the end of the year.

    Starting January 1, 2023, commuters will have to pay when riding the EDSA Bus Carousel from the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX), up to Monumento in Caloocan and vice versa.

    EDSA Busway Tramo station

    Relatedly, Bautista also shared plans of opening more EDSA Busway stations to key locations once the busway system has been privatized following the opening of the public transport system’s Tramo station. The Tramo Station is the fourth EDSA Busway station opened since July 1 this year.

    A joint undertaking of the DOTr, Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the EDSA Busway features 17 median stations, four temporary curbside stations, and an Integrated Terminal Exchange (ITX) that were put up to avoid conflict with connecting streets, driveways, commercial centers, and curbside drop-off points.

    Photos from Department of Transportation Facebook page, Ruben D. Manahan IV

    Also read:

    Additional units for EDSA Busway to come from NAU, DOTr clarifies

    Planners keen on EDSA Busway improvements

    Tugade orders nationwide implementation of ‘Free Ride Service Program’

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