The Department of Transportation (DOTr) on Monday said it is eyeing the partial operability of one of the crucial segments of the Cebu Bus Rapid Transit (Cebu BRT) within the year.
Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade said that he wants Package 1 of the Cebu BRT to be partially in operation this year to respond to the need for mobility amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
Package 1 covers the 2.6-kilometer busway, with four stations, urban realm enhancement, and vital intersection improvements. Currently, Package 1 is already at the procurement stage.
Tugade ordered the Cebu BRT project management team and the other concerned transportation officials to implement a 24/7 construction work schedule, with three work shifts that will employ and generate jobs for more local residents of the province.
He also stressed that the project contractor and personnel with key roles in the Cebu BRT project must be based in Cebu, and that 90 percent of the project’s total work force must be Cebuanos.
“While I’m addressing our program of projects, I am addressing the need of the economy and I’m addressing the requirements of the pandemic,” Tugade said.
“These are extraordinary times. They need extraordinary processes,” he added, stressing the need to generate more jobs for Cebu residents who were displaced from their livelihood by the pandemic.
With this, Tugade said, the national economy will blossom with the local economy.
Tugade also directed to make sure that the project’s work schedule and timeline of completion will be aligned with the election ban next year, and that the procurement process should be fast tracked.
The 13.2-kilometer bus rapid transit lane will traverse the South Road Properties (SRP) through Mambaling, up to IT Park, with 17 stations, two terminals, and one depot.
Along with the BRT, there will be a 20.2-kilometer bus feeder system to run with mixed traffic, complemented with sidewalk bus stops/ shelters along the following routes: Cebu IT Park-Talamban, Mambaling-Bulacao, and Talisay- SRP.
On its completion and once fully operational, the Cebu BRT aims to serve around 60,000 passengers daily.
Tugade said the realization of the Cebu BRT will improve passenger mobility along the project’s corridors. It will also provide an option that is swift, comfortable, cost-effective, efficient, and will generate fewer emissions that reduce both local and global pollution.