MMDA quick to outline plans after Metro Manila tagged with “worst traffic in the world” in 2023

First place isn’t always a good thing. The MMDA took the rating of Metro Manila as having the worst traffic in the world last year to heart and only a few days after the “award” was announced, the agency is already working on comprehensive traffic management interventions to address the rather embarrassing ranking. Here’s what they have in mind so far.

MMDA responds to traffic index ranking with ideas to decongest traffic

Mmda Motorcycle Lane Commonwealth Returns Main 00 Min

According to an independent study by, data showed that Metro Manila had the worst traffic in the world; and it actually got worse in 2023. To travel just a 10-kilometer distance, it was found that it would take a painstaking 25 minutes and 30 seconds. The worst time recorded to cover the same distance was on December 15th; it took 31 minutes and 50 seconds.

The MMDA is not taking this sitting down and the agency quickly went to work, finding ways to continue long-delayed projects and new means to combat the worsening condition of gridlock in the greater metropolitan area.

“Metro Manila has exceeded its carrying capacity for vehicles since it has 3.6 million vehicles on a 5,000-kilometer road network. In EDSA alone, there are 400,000+ vehicles traversing the highway daily but its carrying capacity is only for 300,000 vehicles,” explained MMDA Acting Chairman Atty. Don Artes.

Mmda Katipunan Traffic Scheme Study acet 2023 Main 00 Min

Photo: Metro Manila Development Authority

Various factors were named by the Chairman as those that cause traffic. The list includes vehicle volume, lane blockages, diggings and road repairs, ongoing construction of government flagship infrastructure projects, road configuration and conditions, and suspension of the No Contact Apprehension Policy (NCAP).

There are also rampant and seemingly unresolvable instances of illegal structures and vehicles near school premises as a cause of lane blockages. Add to that the “usiseros” when driving past a scene of a crash or accident and you have even more unnecessary blockages along the roadways.

Despite this, the MMDA’s Acting Chairman also said that there are ongoing and proposed initiatives to further alleviate the traffic congestion in the metropolis. These include the new and improved MMDA Communications and Command Center, JICA-funded improvements in intersections of Metro Manila, Intelligent Transport System (ITS), and regular clearing operations conducted by the Special Operations Group-Strike Force.

2022 MMDA Coding Main edsa carpool

“Ito po ay inaaral ng kasalukuyang administrasyon. Kami po ay gagawa ng paraan, magtutulong-tulong kami ng iba’t ibang ahensiya ng pamahalaan para i-address ito at huwag nang mag-worsen, at eventually, mabawasan [These are being studied by the current administration. We will make a way, different government agencies will work together to address this and to prevent it from worsening, and eventually, reduce (traffic)],” MMDA‘s Artes said.

“Kailangan din po namin ng tulong ng mamamayan dahil kailangan po ng disiplina sa lansangan [We also need the citizens’ help because we need discipline on our roads],” he also added.

What would your ideas be to help improve and ultimately rid ourselves of horrendous traffic jams in Metro Manila? This would be a most interesting way to find out what you, the citizens, believe will be the best ways to make our travels much shorter, and a lot better with the least stress as possible.

Mikko Juangco
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