The sight of long lines of commuters have, for a long time, been the mark of weekday mornings in the suburbs. For students, blue-collars and office workers, this daily struggle to always be on time for school and workplace has been nothing but a grudgingly-accepted reality. As such, many have come to believe and misinterpret this as part of progress and development.
For other countries where this lack of suburbian public transport has long been a thing of the past, at least here in the city, it is novel and a most-welcome solution. Critics may say “duh” and quip sentido common to such a dated urban planning concept but reality has dictated otherwise. Logistically, it had not been possible in the past for the price tag it entailed, but with Davao’s boom and infux of investments, funds for this have become possible.
Now we have air-conditioned buses to the rescue! Equipped with a ramp and special space for disabled persons, comfortable seats, hanging hand-grips (for those standing) and other features like TV, closed-circuit cams and WIFI, these monster buses have not only come and solved the problem, but have included the add-ons for a pleasant trip as well. Again, this may be passè in places like Manila or other places but we’re taking it.
Our ride from the designated starting point (Catalunan) down to end (Roxas) took merely an hour, compared to the two hours travel by jeepney. Although meant only as an augmentation move to address the lack of transport during peak hours, it has nevertheless eased to-and-from daily commutes tremendously. A good start for a growing metro. Interpret this as a sign of progress.