MMDA to implement EDSA carpool lane starting Dec. 11

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 7) — If you've been wanting to have your own "Carpool Karaoke," the government's new policy on EDSA may just help make that happen — and then some.

Share a ride, switch on the tuner, charge a small fee and sing your favorite songs a la James Corden on the popular U.S. television show, as you drive along a special lane on one the country's most congested highways — the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane.   

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will activate the HOV or carpool lane on EDSA on Dec. 11 at 6 a.m. 

A dry run will be in place until Dec. 18, after which violators will be fined ₱500.

 

Only private vehicles with at least one passenger on board may use the HOV lane, which is left-most from the sidewalk.

Under the ride-sharing scheme, private vehicle owners may collect common expenses like parking and toll fees, as well as cost of fuel from passengers.

"If you ask for other than that, then you are engaging in colorum as well," said Aileen Lizada, member of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

"The essence of 'yang HOV, it's a shared use of vehicles by persons of similar interest," Lizada added. "Enforcement lang ang importante dito na dapat hindi gagamitin ito as a tool ng mga colorum vehicles."

[Translation: The essence of the HOV lane is that it's a shared use of vehicles by persons of similar interest. Enforcement is important here so that it won't be used as a tool for colorum vehicles.]

The MMDA also said motorcycles are allowed both on the HOV lane and the "blue lane," which is the fourth from the sidewalk designated for them.

Read: MMDA to strictly implement use of PUV, motorcycle lanes on EDSA

Private cars with no passenger can also use the blue lane and the one to the left of the "yellow lanes," which are actually two lanes nearest the sidewalk reserved exclusively for buses, UV Express Services and school buses.

Lizada added that the LTFRB is talking to Transport Network Companies (TNC) like Grab and Uber about installing trade dress stickers on their units to prevent colorum activities.

"We want to engage the TNCs because if we have the stickers, maa-identify na easily kung ano yung mga cars at mga vans na may mga TNVS stickers, meaning to say, meron silang prangkisa," Lizada told reporters on Thursday.

[Translation: We want to engage the TNCs because if we have the stickers, we can easily identify which cars and vans have TNVS stickers, meaning to say, they have a franchise.]