City braces for yuletide rush

BAGUIO CITY – The city government is bracing for the expected influx of tourists here for the Christmas holidays.

Mayor Mauricio Domogan said a traffic plan is in the works to cope with the exodus of motorists from the lowlands to the city to spend their Christmas vacation in the city.

“Our police traffic division is finalizing the plan, weighing options and I hope they can perfect it before the holidays,” the mayor said.

Police traffic division chief P/Supt. Evelio Degay said the traffic plan has been completed and will be “in black and white” next week.

They have also requested for the installation of semi-permanent traffic signages to complement the traffic scheme. He said the mayor has directed concerned offices to fast-track the completion of these signages.

Degay said the plan rests on the deployment of policemen in strategic locations all over the city but he cannot ensure if the scheme will hold if the volume of vehicles coming up to the city turns heavy as what was experienced last year when monstrous gridlock crippled the city’s roads for many days marring what could have been a joyous and hassle-free Christmas celebration for both the locals and tourists.

“We cannot control the volume of vehicles coming to our city so the most that we can do is to ensure effective deployment of our men. But as to the volume of the vehicles, we cannot do anything unless we prohibit them from bringing their vehicles which of course we cannot do,” Degay said.

Nonetheless, the city police will do their best to avoid a repeat of last year’s mishap, Degay assured.

To usher in the yuletide spirit this early, the city has begun putting up the decorations and trimmings even as the traditional Christmas in Baguio calendar of activities is being finalized.

The mayor said that as in the past years, the activities are designed to bring in cheers and good tidings to both the residents and tourists.

The calendar of activities will be launched on Dec. 1 with the traditional lantern parade and ceremonial lighting of the giant Christmas Tree./A Refuerzo


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