Route ordinance for P2P buses sought

POINT-TO-POINT buses operated by Southwest Travel and Tours queue at Megaworld Transport Hub in Mandurriao, Iloilo City. (Emme Rose Santiagudo)

By: Emme Rose Santiagudo

PREMIUM point-to-point (P2P) buses plying Iloilo City to other areas will soon have their own specific routes to be embodied in a proposed ordinance.

The proposal is an offshoot of the operation of Megaworld’s Transport Hub in Mandurriao district which the Iloilo City Council declared as legal and in order despite the perimeter boundary ordinance for provincial public utility vehicles.

During its regular session on Sept 2, 2019, the Sangguniang Panlungsod approved on first reading the proposed ordinance establishing the route of P2P buses from the Megaworld Transport Hub to Iloilo International Airport in Cabatuan town and vice versa.

The ordinance was referred to the Committee on Transportation.

According to the proponent of the ordinance, Councilor Rommel Duron, one specific route will be from the Megaworld Transport Hub and then right turn to Taft North Street.

The other route will be from the hub, take the Megaworld Avenue all the way to Benigno Aquino Avenue in Mandurriao district then proceed to Cabatuan.

Ginpa-survey namon and ginbantayan and nakita namon nga duha lang gid sila ka option either ma-right turn sila sa Taft Street or maderetso lang and u-turn sa may Benigno Aquino Avenue,” he said in an interview on Friday.

Duron said other areas in the metro may not be conducive as P2P bus routes because of traffic congestion.

He emphasized that the operations of the P2P buses will be formalized once a specific route ordinance is passed.

Kinahanglan i-specify ang ruta kon diin sila maagi kon left or right nga ruta. Every route has a corresponding ordinance,” Duron said.

Violators of the route ordinance will be penalized, he added.

To recall, several transport groups in Panay have questioned the operations of P2P buses travelling out of Megaworld Transport Hub to Iloilo International Airport for violating city ordinances.

But the SP junked their petition and instead declared the operations of Megaworld Transport hub “legal” and “valid” as backed with Regulation Ordinance No. 2019-110 or the ordinance granting Megaworld Corporation the authority to construct, establish, operate and maintain a transport hub in Iloilo Business Park.

At the moment, 15 P2P buses operated by Southwest Tours serve the Iloilo Business Park to Iloilo International Airport route.

The IBP to Iloilo airport route is just one of the routes that the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) recently announced. The other routes are from IBP to Roxas Airport, IBP to Kalibo Airport, and IBP to Caticlan Airport (Boracay), and vice versa. A total of 105 P2P buses will serve these routes.

More provincial routes will soon open, particularly in Antique and Roxas City in Capiz.