CABLE cars for transportation?
Before, it was a mere dream or a proposal by lawmakers to help ease traffic. But for Antipolo City Mayor Casimiro “Jun” Ynares III, the city took it’s first step to such realization, as they met with foreign consultants of the Department of Transportation.
They were briefed on the progress of their work, with regards to the pre-feasibility study phase, of a proposed project involving the installation of cable cars.
The cable cars are expected to help ease not only traffic but the commuters per se, who will need a ride going up and down Antipolo City.
According to Mayor Jun, the cable cars will bring commuters from the city of Antipolo to several business districts and transportation hubs.
“We left the briefing with a feeling that the project is still far on the horizon, but is closer more than ever to reality,” he said.
Going up and down the city is becoming a challenge for residents, as while Antipolo continued to develop economically, with more investments and people doing business there, traffic also started to emerge.
That is why Mayor Jun, thought of all options to help the Antipolenyos and those visiting or doing business in the city to have an easy access going up and down.
Cable cars for tourism?
Mayor Jun said that when one thinks about cable cars, among those that comes to mind will be the ones at Hong Kong’s Ocean Park.
“The consultants showed us what the cable cars would look like and they do resemble the cable cars of Hong Kong’s Ocean Park or the one that brings tourists from the island’s Tung Chung train station to Lantau Island,” he said.
“They resemble mini-versions of our newer LRT trains,” he added.
It will be the first ever in the Philippines, and will certainly be a tourist attraction that will also help further boost the bustling economy of Antipolo City.
The cable car, while on its way up or down, will allow people to have a glimpse of the nearby cities and beauty of nature, highlighted by a view of Metro Manila from the top.
The meeting involved consultants to which the pre-feasibility phase funding of US$261,000 will be made available by the Asian Development Bank.
Mayor Jun said that after the meeting, the discussion and presentation focused on the question: “As soon as we have proven that the cable car service is feasible from all angles, how are we to build it?”
“We were no longer talking about whether it should be built or not, nor is this something we must build or not. The idea of cable car services in the country, it appears, has gone beyond the imagination stage. We are ready to move it forward,” he said.
Mayor Jun said that the foreign consultants also briefed them on where the cable car stations might be built.
Among the possible areas include within the compound of the Rizal Provincial Capitol and the Antipolo City campus of the University of Rizal System.
Mayor Jun also said that the project will link the cable cars with the MRT and LRT.
“The idea is for the cable cars from these stations would connect commuters to two or three stations of MRT 4 – the line being built which will ply the Ortigas Avenue Extension route,” he said.
“With a cable car service, it should take commuters just a few minutes to go from Antipolo to an MRT 4 station. That could potentially mean decreasing the volume of vehicles coming down from Antipolo to Tikling, particularly during rush hour,” Mayor Jun added.
In several countries, cable cars are no longer mere tourist attractions. As early as 2004, Colombia integrated cable cars into its transportation system. New York, Venezuela, Algeria, Bolivia, Vietnam, and a few others have followed suit.
“More importantly, it would bring commuters faster to their schools and work destinations. They would be spending less time traveling and more time on productive endeavors,” he also said.
Mayor Jun said that they hope to achieve the project under the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., who himself is determined to turn the dream of a cable car service into a reality.
Earlier, Senator Robinhood Padilla proposed to use aerial cable cars as a solution to the traffic problems in Metro Manila which was also suggested by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) under the previous administration.
Catherine R. Cueto