The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is eyeing partial operations for the Cebu Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) by December 2021.
The DOTr said on Monday, January 25, that Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade ordered speedy construction to open Package 1 of the Cebu BRT before the year ends.
The Cebu BRT Package 1 covers a 2.6-kilometer busway, with 4 stations. According to the DOTr, Package 1 is currently in the procurement stage.
Tugade on January 20 ordered the Cebu BRT Project Management Team to implement a 24/7 construction schedule with 3 work shifts to ensure that completion “will be aligned with the election ban” in 2022.
Every election year, the Commission on Elections implements an infrastructure ban for 45 days, from late March to early May.
“These are extraordinary times. They need extraordinary processes,” said Tugade, giving the green light to hire local workers, particularly those displaced by the coronavirus pandemic. (READ: Strong political will? Experts hit ‘very slow’ rollout of transportation projects)
The entire Cebu BRT project spans 13.2 kilometers, traversing South Road Properties through Mambaling, up to IT Park. It will have 17 stations, two terminals, and one depot.
A 20.2-kilometer feeder system, with sidewalk bus stops, will also be established to complement the BRT along the following routes:
- Cebu IT Park-Talamban
Once fully operational, the Cebu BRT is seen to serve around 60,000 passengers daily.
During the DOTr’s 2021 budget deliberations, Senator Nancy Binay slammed the department for the snail’s pace of the Cebu BRT project. The P16.3-billion loan from the World Bank is set to expire on June 30 and government coffers already took a hit due to project delays.
In 2018, the DOTr sought to cancel the Cebu BRT project, citing infrastructure constraints. Later that year, the department decided to push through with it after all. – Rappler.com