Coastal Road opens, but limited to leisure for now

Subscribe Now January 30, 2022 at 08:18am

CYCLISTS, joggers, and other recreational enthusiasts flocked to the Davao City Coastal Road on Friday, January 28, 2022, after it was opened to the public but limited to recreational activities for now.

A day before, the Davao City Government made the announcement on its official social media accounts of its opening.

According to the City Government, the coastal road will be opened to the public daily from 5 a.m. to 8 a.m., and 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Among the allowed activities include walking, biking, playing, jogging, exercise and skating.

Vehicles and motorcycles, however, are not allowed, and that must be parked at designated parking areas.

The city said enthusiasts must wear their face masks or else they will not be allowed to enter. Minimum health protocols such as physical distancing and washing hands with soap and water must be observed.

Public Safety and Security Command Center (PSSCC) head Angel Sumagaysay said in a radio interview on the same day that only the first five-kilometer part of the Bago to Barangay Talomo stretch of the coastal road was opened to the public.

Sumagaysay said some parts of the coastal road are off-limits, as ordered by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), since construction is still ongoing along with its other stretch.

He said security officials, based on their assessment, had a hard time manning the area, with some bikers not using the bike lanes.

"Natural ang unang adlaw lisod pa kay very excited pa ang mga tao, eh. So ato gina-advisan na kung naga-bike ka, sa bike lane ka kay ang karsada para sa mga joggers," Sumagaysay said in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio.

(It is natural on the first day that people are very excited. So I advise that if you’re a biker, use the bike lanes since the road is intended for joggers.)

Personnel from the River Patrol and Coastal Road Monitoring Team under PSSCC, along with the City Transport and Traffic Management Office (CTTMO), Davao City Police Office (DCPO) and Task Force Davao were also stationed to secure and monitor the area.

DPWH-Davao Region Spokesperson Dean Ortiz said in a forwarded video message that since the construction of the Davao City Coastal Bypass Road in 2017, the project's actual accomplishment was already at 82.88 percent.

"We are looking at the end of the year 2023 to complete the 18-kilometer stretch," Ortiz said.

He also reiterated that the partial opening of the coastal road is only for "leisure activities" for now.

The limited time was also intended to give time for its contractors to continue working on the site.

The coastal road project is composed of four segments: Bago Aplaya – Times Beach; Times Beach – Roxas Avenue; Roxas Avenue – Sta. Ana Wharf; and Sta. Ana Wharf – R. Castillo.

The project aims to serve as an alternate route to the Davao-Cotabato Road and ABS-CBN Diversion Road to ease traffic congestion along busy intersections and the Central Business District. It is also intended to disperse urbanization outside the Davao City Urban Center.

Meanwhile, Davao City Covid-19 Task Force Spokesperson Dr. Michelle Schlosser reminded recreational enthusiasts to abide by the minimum health protocols, especially since the city is currently experiencing a surge in cases, which is reportedly suspected with the emergence of the Omicron variant.


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