I was able to take some photos along Marcos Highway before the rains came over the weekend just to have a handle on the current state of roadworks along that road. I had written recently about the progress along Commonwealth Ave., particularly the stretch connecting to Quirino Highway. In that project, the contractors constructed a culvert across Commonwealth that took quite some time and yet has been completed many weeks ago.
Unfortunately, for those using Marcos Highway, it seems the inconvenience (to use a diplomatic word) will continue on considering the seemingly chaotic approach the contractors have been employing in digging up the pavement. Of course, it is a major project and I am sure many people will ultimately be thankful for the new drainage (hopefully, it’s maintained well) and the brand new pavement that will make travel smoother. But then the completion of the Marcos Highway works seem quite far in the horizon and has effected tremendous losses in travel time and fuel.
Section across Burger King and in the vicinity of a U-turn slot intended for traffic generally coming from Imelda/Felix Ave. The site is a bottleneck for traffic coming from Masinag and the villages along Marcos Highway. Due to the road works and the U-turn slot, there are only 2 lanes effectively available for through traffic that originally flowed along 4 lanes.
Past the bottleneck, the Marcos Highway seems quite spacious with the equivalent of 3 lanes suddenly available to motorists. At right, there is the work area of a water concession who is supposed to coordinate with the road project contractor.
Newly paved lane at the approach to the junction with Imelda Ave/A. Tuazon Ave. The works at this intersection has affected turning traffic to and from A. Tuazon Ave. At one time, right turns from Marcos Highway were prohibited due to construction affecting the entire intersection exit to A. Tuazon itself.
After passing Dela Paz and approaching Ligaya, motorists will usually encounter another bottleneck due to the U-turn slot for vehicles generally coming from Amang Rodriguez (Pasig) and bound for Marikina. The area is usually constricted even with traffic enforcers present. These enforcers are usually found engrossed in checking for number coding violators than managing traffic. At present, there project contractor has paved the innermost lane of the section and this morning that lane is already passable to vehicles. Problem is, the same vehicles will discover that they will eventually run into the U-turn slot and motorists would have to swerve right to converge with through traffic.
At the intersection of Marcos and Rodriguez, the traffic enforcers (probably in coordination with the contractor) made an opening to allow for counterflow during the peak periods. This is supposed to alleviate congestion at the intersection where aside from the still unfinished works, jeepneys tend to congregate and constrict the flow of traffic. Such occurs on a regular basis and one wonders how Pasig and MMDA enforcers can just stand around and not do anything about this predicament.
After Ligaya, traffic flow is split with vehicles maneuvering left and right to avoid road works along a middle lane of Marcos Highway. The pavement on the right most lanes are newly constructed and have been passable for some time now. From the looks of the pavement on the left, these two will soon be scheduled for re-blocking. Perhaps the lane under construction now will be finished by then.
There are also drainage and road works ongoing on the other side of the highway and right in front along the LRT2 station. Often, commuters can be seen taking one lane of Marcos Highway as they try to get their rides from jeepneys who occupy yet another lane or two. During the night-time, another counterflow scheme is used for eastbound traffic with an opening just after the bridge.
Of course there is hope for those using Marcos Highway regularly. Perhaps the project will be completed before school opens in June 2012 and by then flow will be smoother and congestion more bearable. We only need to look at Ortigas Ave and its extension to know that we are still quite lucky. It is far worse along that road.