By Mariela Angella Oladive
Residents and visitors in Iloilo City are grappling with traffic congestion, particularly in the downtown area of Iloilo City Proper, as the Dinagyang Festival reaches its final week.
The situation is exacerbated by road closures necessary for the construction of festival stages.
Some of the commuters in the city shared with Daily Guardian their frustrations as they navigated through the congested streets.
“Kainang aga grabe gid ya traffic, halin ako sa Tagbak paadto sa Robinson [Iloilo City]. Ang salakyan indi ka agi kag nagalibot. Grabe man ang paranawon kay indi kasulod ang jeep sa karsada,” shared Evelyn, a commuter who was shopping for his son on January 22.
(Traffic this morning was horrendous, I came from Tagbak going to Robinsons (Iloilo City). The jeepney could not pass the area. We had to walk far because the jeepney could not get in.)
“Makapoy kag naugot. Dugangan pa nga may bata kami nga imaw nga nagugtas kag naga-inarte,” she added.
(I am tired and irritated. Worse, I have a child with me who was acting up).
Another commuter, Christian Mark Britana, said he understood the situation but still nagged about the inconvenience.
“Syempre kaawat gid ya, kay kainit sang tiempo at the same time super delay gid ya, daw ka waste of time. Mas budlay ang traffic subong nga Dinagyang especially sa Socorro. Compare sa normal days, need mo gid mag early sa imo kadtoan para indi malate,” he said.
(Of course, it’s an inconvenience since the weather is hot and I am super delayed, it’s a waste of time. Traffic is worse in this Dinagyang, especially in the Socorro area. Compared to normal days, we need to leave our houses early to avoid being late)
Daily Guardian also learned that some schools were forced to suspend classes even before City Hall’s announcement Monday morning.
In response to the traffic situation, the Iloilo City Traffic Management Unit (ICTMU) issued a traffic advisory the same day, announcing the road closures associated with Dinagyang stage construction.
The affected areas include the Mabini-Delgado Stage and the Quezon Ledesma Stage.
The advisory urged the public to be patient and understanding during their travels, emphasizing the importance of giving way to others to avoid stressful and inconvenient situations.
Meanwhile, locals and visitors alike are encouraged to stay informed about road closures and alternative routes to navigate the temporary inconveniences associated with the upcoming festivity.
For further details on road closures and rerouting updates, the public may visit the ICTMU Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=61554139828177.
Additionally, comprehensive information about road closures and rerouting specific to the Dinagyang Festival 2024 can be found at https://www.facebook.com/share/p/Yr8x82HGiboQXD2c/?mibextid=WC7FNe.