10/24/14

LTFRB and its “Uber” Dumb Move

There is nothing like government trying to mess up something that has been running pretty much fine, all in the name of “public welfare”, “doing its (supposed) mandate”, or whatever it may be.

That surely was the line that the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) used in defending its latest move, cracking down on the mobile-based ride sharing transport service Uber this week, beginning with a sting operation against an Uber vehicle.

And what is the LTFRB’s reason as to why they are going after Uber? Because it does not have a franchise that public utility vehicles should have in order for them to carry passengers.  Continue reading

10/23/14

Greenfield Weekend Market: A Weekend Market in the Greens

Weekend markets in the eastern side of the metropolis have been growing in popularity in recent years, thanks in part to such events first organized at Ortigas Center by Banchetto, which has since then transferred to the area near Forum Robinsons in southeastern Mandaluyong. Since then, there have been a number of other weekend market venues there in the east, though few has yet to match the legacy of the former. Perhaps, the closest that would have rivalled Banchetto would be the weekend market set up by Mercato Centrale in the area of Greenfield District (right around the corner of EDSA and Shaw Boulevard) called Manda Centrale.

Unfortunately, despite the Mercato name, Manda Centrale fizzled out after a few months like a number of Mercato locations outside Bonifacio Global City. Which was a shame since Greenfield District is itself a bustling commercial area that benefited from heavy foot traffic that goes all the way up to the busy Ortigas Center nearby. Nevertheless, the seeds of a weekend market venture have been planted; on March 2014, Greenfield District opened a weekend market of its own: the Greenfield Weekend Market.

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10/21/14

Metropolitan Infrastructure Developments (October 2014)

Recently, the National Economic and Development Authority, (NEDA) the government’s economic development planning body, has approved 12 new infrastructure projects to be built in the country. In particular interest to Metro Manila are 2 projects which are hoped to alleviate the metropolis’ traffic woes. (the operative word there is “hopefully”)

It has to be noted though that these two projects (at least some aspects of them) are not really new. In fact, they have been long in the pipeline but it is only now that NEDA gave them the approval to get started with these projects. Continue reading

10/20/14

The Saga of the (Victory) Lacson Underpass

It’s interesting to note that Metro Manila has more pedestrian overpasses (or footbridges as they are popularly called these days) than pedestrian underpasses. Maybe it’s partly because of concerns of flooding as parts of the metropolis are flood-prone areas, which also is a factor as to why there is yet to be a true subway system in the metropolis. (no, the partly underground Lines 2 and 3 do not count)

This entry today talks about one of these few pedestrian underground networks in the country, the Quiapo underpass network known today as the Lacson Underpass, the first such network to be built in the City of Manila and in the metropolis and the country as a whole.

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10/17/14

The Lady of Ermita

Mention the place “Ermita” and you will probably get many responses that dwell on the district’s not-so-positive reputation, thanks to it being known before as a haven of the so-called “girly bars” that has tainted this old district’s heritage, never mind the fact that these bars are no longer as prevalent as they were before the 1990s.

Nevertheless, for the old Catholic faithful in the district, they have their affections lie on one lady whose presence there predates the bars, going as far back at least to the time when the Spaniards set foot in Manila in 1571. The lady of Ermita that is the Marian image known as the Nuestra Señora de Guia. (Our Lady of Guidance)

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