Required budget for Davao City’s bus system grows to P76 billion

OtherStories

THE High Priority Bus System (HPBS) of the Davao City government would now require a funding allocation of an estimated P76 billion, according to a city official.

HPBS Manager and Assistant City Administrator for Administration lawyer Tristan Dwight Domingo said in a press conference on Thursday, September 8 that the previous budget, as approved by the National Economic and Development Authority-Investment Coordination Committee (Neda-ICC) and will be funded by the national government and partner funding agency, Asian Development Bank, was at around P18 billion.

“We had approval in the past, but that was significantly lower budget. Since we did the detailed engineering at that time, and it has progressed since Neda approved it, there were changes, and the actual estimate or financial requirement of the project had been confirmed,” Domingo said.

He said the increased budget was due to the intention of purchasing electronic buses, and to have an improved traffic management system to be incorporated in the project.

The official said the city wanted to ensure that the modernized public transportation would be efficient, and would give convenience to the commuters.

Domingo added that the city is aiming to be a model in the country’s public transportation.

“We’re banking to the DOTr [Department of Transportation] that this will be like a flagship or pilot project on how to do effective public transportations in cities outside Metro Manila, or if really successful, maybe some parts of which can be incorporated even in Metro Manila,” he said.

With this, the official is hoping that the budget increase would be granted for next year.

While waiting, he said components and contracts of the HPBS have been bidded out, but the city has not yet awarded it to any bidder due to funding status.

Domingo said the city is aware that for the past few weeks, commuters were struggling to get a ride home due to the limited number of PUVs operating especially during peak hours and heavy rains.

This had prompted the city to bring back the Peak Hours Augmentation Service (Phabs) buses.

The official said that the city, through the City Transport and Traffic Management Office (CTTMO), is in coordination with the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and bus companies, for additional augmentation of buses in case there would still be shortage of buses.

For the HPBS, he said the city is aiming to kick off the implementation of the modernized bus system in April 2023. RGL

SunStar Davao

SunStar Davao

SunStar Davao is Davao City's most sought after community content provider in both print and online. It is part of the SunStar news network in the Philippines. Sun.Star Davao started as a bi-weekly newspaper Peryodiko Dabaw in December 1985 by Elpidio G. Damaso as the so-called alternative press during the end days of the Marcos dictatorship. It started publishing five times a week the following year and was relaunched as Ang Peryodiko Dabaw on September 7, 1987, marking the entry of new investors and its use of desktop publishing, while its Davao City competitors were still using letterpress.

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