Traffic jams have worsened in some areas in Olongapo City due to road widening and fixtures. Many roads have been dug up again for more rehabilitation work in preparation for the upcoming 2019 Southeast Asian Games. Add to this the ongoing project of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) as part of the “Build, Build, Build” program of our President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.
Some of the projects started late. The major road fixture that the government is working on now is the 14th gate bridge, located in 14th St., Olongapo City. This is one of the alternative routes used to bypass the main entrance going to the Subic Bay Freeport Zone (SBFZ). Most employees and motorists use this gateway to avoid the traffic jam in the major roads of Olongapo City, and it’s nearer to the Subic Bay Gateway Park (SBGP) where most of the factories and foreign companies are located.
With this obstruction, all vehicles are heading to the main entrance of SBFZ, the 2nd gate. The traffic here is just unbearable, most especially when it’s rush hour. The steel barricades placed by the Office of Traffic Management and Public Safety are causing road obstruction along Rizal Avenue in front of Fresh Options going to SBFZ. The reason behind the steel barricades though was to organize the traffic flow. City enforcers have put up road signs that say: “All PUJ should stay in the left lane” and “All vehicles going to SBFZ should stay on the right”.
The projects of the DPWH were designed to relieve the problem of heavy traffic and decongest the streets. However, it seems like you have to bear with traffic congestion for the meantime before we hopefully address the traffic problem in the city.
Citizens are airing on Facebook their sentiments, with many begrudgingly irked for staying on the road for more than an hour. When people start comparing Rizal Avenue with the infamous EDSA, then carmageddon has indeed arrived in Olongapo.