The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the regional Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) have approved the province’s five-year Local Public Transport Route Plan (LPTRP) that will help LGUs in implementing public transportation routes.

The LPTRP is expected to help local government units’ in planning and designing their transportation systems and implement appropriate transport routes based on passenger demand.

Provincial Planning and Development Office (PPDO) head Ninfa Rubio told Palawan News in an interview Wednesday that the approved LPTRP 2019-2023 is expected to formalize different routes in Palawan to lessen colorum vehicle operation on national highways.

She said the DOTr and the LTFRB granted the notice of compliance (NOC) on June 4 and was received by the provincial government on June 11.

Rubio said it will be the basis of the LTFRB in the issuance of franchises to public transport applicants.

“In 2018, we started the data gathering and situational analysis, traffic counts sa mga areas, including Puerto Princesa City. Almost a year ang preparation at natapos namin. Dumating ngayon ang NOC, ibig sabihin ay approved na ito ng LTFRB at ng DOTr. Ngayon na approved na Nila ay kailangan ng mag-craft ng Sangguniang Panlalawigan ng ordinance para dito,” Rubio said.

In the notice signed by LTFRB Regional Franchising and Regulatory Office (RFRO) No. IV regional director Col. Renwick Rutaquio, the approved routes (vice versa), authorized mode of transportation (Public Utility Jeep (PUJ)/Public Utility Bus (PUB)/Mini/MeterBus(Mbus)/ Utility Vehicles (UV) Express and number of vehicles are as follows:

  • San Jose, Roxas to Port Barton (PUJ- eight units)
  • Calauit, Busuanga to Coron (UV Express- 22 units)
  • Puerto Princesa City to El Nido (PUB- 125 units)
  • Puerto Princesa City to Buliluyan, Bataraza (PUB-159 units)
  • Puerto Princesa City to Sicud, Rizal (PUB- 53 units)
  • Coron Poblacion to New Quezon, Busuanga (MBus-19 units)
  • Itabiak, Roxas to San Vicente (MBus-10 units)
  • Sta. Teresita, Dumaran to Abongan (MBus- eight units)
  • Magara, Roxas to Caruray, San Vicente (MBus- four units)
  • Abo-abo, Sofronio Espanola to Quezon (Filcab- five units)
  • Sicud, Rizal to Sandoval, Bataraza (PUJ- 15 units)

“Siguro ay mas magiging maganda ang flow ng traffic. Of course, mababawasan din ang number of colorum vehicles natin dahil magkakaroon na nang application for a franchise. Magiging legal ang pagbiyahe,” she said.

Rubio said that this LPTRP may be amended but subject to the approval of the agencies.

She said that this is the first route plan of the provincial government.

“Halos existing route naman ang nakalagay dyan kaya lang naging formalized lang sya. Kung anong number of units ang dyan ay dapat hindi dyan mag-exceed, kung kailangan man dagdagan ay dapat pang i-request at ma-approve,” she said.

“This is the first route plan na ginawa ng province kasi dati ay LTFRB ang gumagawa. Ngayon ay downloaded na sa LGU,” Rubio added.

In 2017, the transport sector in Palawan faced franchising issues due to the crackdown by the authorities against the colorum vehicles.