Baguio City gov't receives 'P250 congestion fee' proposal to curb traffic

It is one of the proposals presented by MPTC to curb traffic in Baguio City.

Baguio City gov't receives 'P250 congestion fee' proposal to curb traffic

MANILA: The government of Baguio City has received a proposal to implement a P250 “congestion fee.” According to the local government of the City of Pines, the fee is one of the few holistic proposals presented by the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) to curb the worsening traffic situation in the Philippines’ summer capital. 

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • What is the MPTC?

    The MPTC, or the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation, is a private-public partnership entity that operates several toll roads in the Philippines.
  • How far is Baguio City from Metro Manila?

    Baguio City is approximately 246 kilometers north of Metro Manila, according to Google Maps.
  • Other traffic-reducing measures presented by MPTC with the same goal in mind for Baguio City include an advanced traffic management system, a smart parking management system, and an advanced public transport management system. 

    Of note, the latter three will mostly leverage digitalization measures. Specifically, MPTC brought forth modernized traffic signals prioritizing pedestrians. Second, parking facilities might use an automatic centralized system to monitor availability. Meanwhile, public transport could use global positioning systems to better estimate arrival times at public utility vehicle waiting stops. 

    Going back to the congestion fee, Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong stressed its current status as a proposition by MPTC. The statement came after social media users criticized the proposed P250 congestion fee. 

    baguio city mayor Benjamin Magalong

    “This is still a proposal, and we are presenting it for transparency so that people won’t be left in the dark on what we are doing,” Magalong said. 

    “We want people to know of this project so they can voice out their views and opinions to guide us in our succeeding actions. We assure you that we are listening and considering your sentiments,” Magalong added. 

    MPTC, however, believes the congestion fee can be effective in reducing congestion levels. The latter is according to a study conducted by the said Public Private Partnership (PPP) entity in March 2024. The study claims a change of travel patterns for up to 20 percent of motorists once the proposed congestion fee is enacted during the said city’s peak hours. 

    To provide context on Baguio’s current traffic status, yet another study from MPTC determined the city sees up to 25,000 tourist-owned vehicles on the weekends. The latter goes on top of the 60,000 cars owned by residents of the city. 

    Photos from Baguio City Public Information Office Facebook page

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    Cesar Miguel

    Cesar Miguel

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