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Iloilo City Modernized and Sustainable Transport

Iloilo City Transport

Iloilo City Transport: A significant transformation in public transportation is set to happen as Iloilo City implements the Local Public Transport Route Plan (LPTRP), launched in June 2022, to improve public transport. Under the LPTRP, Iloilo City is introducing 1,782 modernized jeepneys to replace older models, with 500 units already operating. Such modernized vehicles are set to follow 17 existing routes, 7 new routes, and 1 enhanced new/developmental route.

Last February 2023, the Western Visayas Transportation Cooperative deployed 95 new modern jeepneys across 13 routes in Iloilo City. Amenities of the modern vehicle include air-conditioning, CCTV systems, Wi-Fi, GPS, and a cashless payment system. Modern jeepneys are said to adhere to European emission standards for reduced environmental impact.

Future projects are also underway to further revolutionize transportation in Iloilo. The city is reviewing a proposal for a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, envisioned to improve the efficiency of public transportation. The BRT system aims to reduce traffic congestion and provide a fast and reliable mode of travel.

Moreover, a mobile app-based bike-sharing system is being explored. This initiative will provide a sustainable alternative to motorized transport, and effectively alleviate traffic congestion.

The movement to an electrified transport system leads to plans to utilize electric buses. Electric buses are expected to be integrated with the proposed BRT system, a profound commitment to the metro’s efforts towards sustainable and green transport solutions.

In addition, the 189B Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridge Project is seen to reduce travel time between Panay and Negros islands from four hours to one hour by land. The structure is deemed to be a strong catalyst for economic growth and enhanced inter-island connectivity.

Another upgrade is also set for the improvement of the Iloilo International Airport, with Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista advocating for its privatization. The goal is to expand the airport’s capacity to handle 10 million passengers annually, improving tourism and economic development in the region.

However, such developments have their respective challenges. The phase-out of traditional jeepneys faces resistance from drivers and operators. With this, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) are actively supporting displaced drivers through the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP). TESDA Director General, Tonisito Umali, announced that 900 scholarship grants have been provided to aid drivers and beneficiaries.

The proposed infrastructure also faces public resistance. However, the metro is investing in public information to facilitate the understanding and cooperation of stakeholders.

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