Davao City traffic project showcases Pinoy ingenuity

Subscribe Now May 05, 2012 at 09:04pm

A BALIKBAYAN who made a name for himself in the United States in traffic engineering has showcased a top-notch talent with what has been cited by multilateral agencies as the “best governance project” hereabouts: the P1-billion traffic-signal synchronization project in Davao City, whose closed-circuit television (CCTV) component has vastly improved the campaign against crime. Believe it or not, their CCTV can capture vehicle details even from 2 kilometers away.

The balikbayan, engineer Efren Abratique, one of the University of the East’s top 60 graduates, has again swished his “magic wand” with another world-class fixing of traffic signals within the Makati Business District, primarily around the perimeter of the Glorietta complex. No less than Ayala Land top honcho Antonio Aquino was so impressed by the traffic design that Abratique & Associates is a top pick for a planned huge Ayala real-estate project in Quezon City.

With the Ayala showcase, local officials and even foreign consultants will now have two traffic lakbay-aral projects to learn from, that in Davao City and then the Ayala business district, where traffic movement has reportedly eased by 52 percent. This means a reduction in gas emissions that, in turn, mean that, environment-wise, solving traffic woes would earn ecologic points for the Philippines.

Perhaps, it is now time for the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to tap the expertise of this balikbayan engineer so that the traffic woes that now bedevil the stretch of Edsa, from Cubao to Buendia, would ease somewhat and earn pogi points for the country. MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino should now take advantage of Engineer Abratique’s traffic-engineering expertise that dates back to when he devised the signals in California about two decades ago.

Is it a go or no-go for Tampakan?

WITH the way the “pros” and “cons” in what has been billed as a top mining project in South Cotabato are exchanging “pleasantries,” the Aquino administration might once again push back the drafting of a comprehensive mining policy. Long-overdue, the players in the Tampakan gold-copper project have expanded, with former Con-con delegate Christian Monsod and British Ambassador Stephen Lillie joining the fray.

The Tampakan case has already resulted in the loss of P10 billion in mining investments, according to the Chamber of Mines. That is a huge sum that could have raised economic benefits but the dire warning on its supposed ecological cost is what is being raised by those opposed to the South Cotabato project. Because of the ongoing dispute on the proposals and counterproposals, the mining-policy issuance is being unduly delayed. And people are mistaking this for foot-dragging or, worse, “noynoying,” on the part of the administration.

For Monsod, his concerns revolve around the second draft of the mining policy; fears have been expressed that the Tampakan case may be excluded from the ambit of mining policy that is being crafted. Do these fears have solid basis? To Monsod, this apparently is what the bigwigs in the mining industry are seeking. As they say in television teleserye: “Abangan.”

Why is Ambassador Francis Chua eerily quiet?

VARIOUS heads of business groups have banded together to weigh in on the unfortunate off-loading incident involving Ambassador Francis Chua when a Cathay Pacific flight had to turn around because of what has been reported as the insistence of the envoy to go to the cockpit.

Donald Dee, former Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industries president, Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Lester Lino and Exporters Confederation of the Philippines President Sergio Ortiz Luis cited Chua’s alleged claustrophobia, among other things, for the supposed unfortunate incident.

It is said that Chua “insists he never introduced himself as an envoy to any of the cabin crew,” but this is only what the business heads are saying. Chua, himself, has not come out with his own statement about the matter. Perhaps, he should stop being eerily quiet and answer the allegations of the cabin crew that the reason the flight turned around and off-loaded Chua was his unruly behavior.

Pigs, chicken plus vegetables and fish

THE Department of Agriculture may soon find itself tackling not just pig and chicken raisers but also vegetable growers all over the country, as well as fishermen, who are now being affected, economically, that is, by the unhampered entry of smuggled items in various customs zones.

What if the pig, chicken, fish and vegetable raisers suddenly refuse to take their goods to the wet markets all over the country on account of the unabated entry of smuggled items that threaten the very livelihood of these agricultural industries? That may happen soon unless the government moves promptly and decisively to stop the smuggling of these items. By the way, with the rampant sale of botcha in our markets, is there any possibility that some, if not the bulk, of these “health hazards” could have come from the smuggled frozen pork? Just wondering.

Korea aids irrigation project

ILOILO, specifically, the Jalaur River, will soon get an P8.9-billion official development assistance (read: cheap loans) for a planned project that could boost the agricultural sector in the area. The Philippines will chip in P2.2 billion as its counterpart fund for the project that would mean a hydroelectric power plant, an irrigation project and a bulk water supply.

The loan, signed on the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank meeting, would bolster the image of Iloilo as the “seafood capital of the Philippines,” and possibly boost the chances of Transportation Secretary Mar Roxas for an elective position come 2016. The loan comes courtesy of the Export-Import Bank of Korea.

Source: businessmirror.com.ph

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