Elevated ‘greenways’ to rise on Edsa
NADI, Fiji — Elevated pathways that will serve not only pedestrians but also bikers will soon be built on Edsa as the Philippine government and Asian Development Bank (ADB) firm up within the year a $100-million (more than P5-billion) loan for the proposed “greenways” project.
Ramesh Subramaniam, director general of the ADB Southeast Asia department, said the plan was to build six to seven greenways, initially at the intersections of North Edsa, Ortigas and Taft avenues along Edsa.
Subramaniam spoke to Filipino reporters on the sidelines of the Manila-based lender’s 52nd Annual Meeting.
He later said the ADB would also provide technical assistance to a similar project at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City.
- Cleo Kawawaki, deputy director general of ADB-Southeast Asia, said the greenways project would have a walkway for pedestrians and a lane for bikers.
“They will be on the same track—all elevated bikeways, as well as pedestrian [walkways]. That’s the configuration they are looking at right now,” Kawawaki said.
From MRT to malls
“If you’re in Ortigas, it will allow you to [get] off the [Metro Rail Transit 3] to go to Megamall without going on the ground. Everything is elevated so you’ll just be walking to the [MRT 3] stations onto the malls, to the offices,” she explained.
“What we’re trying to do is see if there are ways where we can have the bicycle [lane] also on the elevated [path] so that the roads are reserved for the cars. So less accidents, less traffic,” Kawawaki said.
The project has yet to be approved by the National Economic and Development Authority Board chaired by the President. Once it gets the go-signal, the ADB and Philippine government can sign the loan agreement this year, according to Subramaniam.
“We are definitely starting within the year, but [since] what we’ve done is different, we are doing a lot more detailed [technical] design. We are working with the government and very high-quality consultants who are doing the design,” he said.
Building these greenways is “supposed to be fast,” he noted.
Gov’t target: One this year
“In fact, the government’s desire [is one] done within this calendar year, but I think probably, we are looking at 2020, at least one greenway completed. So that we can also learn from it because it’s the first time it’s being done,” Subramaniam said.
He pointed out that similar greenways could be seen in other cities like Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong.
“So the idea is to promote pedestrian-friendly structures so [that the] reliance on public transport will go down as the Philippines finds other solutions,” he said.
“We are very optimistic about it. We’re going to start small, but there’s a good plan, a good feasibility study that has been done and the [Department of Transportation] as well as the [Department of Public Works and Highways] are very keen, they’re very committed,” Subramaniam said.
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