Monday, November 17, 2008

U-Turn slot in Katipunan: 1 step forward, 2 steps back

Back in college (circa late 90's) there was an intersection along Katipunan ave. in front of Gate 3 of Ateneo.  This is the one where KFC is located.

Vehicles leaving Ateneo exited through Gate 3 and either turn right towards UP, or turn left going to Makati.  It was the most convenient route out of school.

But as more and more students used cars going to school, that intersection, with its traffic light, became a congested area.

The school administrators tried lots of traffic rerouting schemes, including building a service/access road parallel to Katipunan, all to no avail.

Then in the early 2000's, MMDA came in with its U-Turn Slot Scheme.  It ordered the closure of that intersection, decommissioned the traffic light and put up u-turn slots in front of Shakey's on one end and Burgundy on the other.

According to MMDA, its U-Turn Slot system was more traffic friendly because it eliminated the waiting time associated with traffic lights.

Never mind that the traffic lights costed the Filipino people millions of pesos or that the traffic light system has been an effective traffic system in numerous countries, the MMDA U-Turn Slot system was much better.

Imagine my astonishment when I recently noticed a traffic light on a u-turn slot in Katipunan!!!

In effect, cars had to stop when the light was red and could only u-turn when the light turned green.

Isn't that counter-productive?

Doesn't that defeat the very purpose of the u-turn in the first place?

Eh di just reopen the intersection sa Gate 3 and place the traffic light there.  Para di na magsayang ng gas yung mga tao.

A classic case of taking one step forward, only to move two steps back. 

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