Traffic light sensor system delayed
A TRAFFIC control system aimed at reducing gridlock in Yangon that was supposed to be in place on August 2 is still not close to being finished, Yangon Region lawmakers revealed yesterday.
The companies tasked with the project, one from China, the other local, have installed traffic-detecting sensors on only 84 of the 154 selected traffic lights. And the new traffic control centre, slated for People’s Square Park in Dagon township, is still under construction.
MP U Wai Phyo Han (NLD; Insein 2) asked the relevant officials why the project was not finished.
“Our people look to our government to reduce traffic congestion,” he said. “But we do not see any success yet.”
Mayor U Maung Maung Soe explained that the aspirational target date was set by the companies and not the government, but promised to figure out why the project has been delayed.
“We will ask the company and we will take responsibility for that,” he said.
The companies have been paying a K100,000 (US$79) fine every day since August 3, said Traffic Light and Control Centre Supervising Committee chair U Maung Aung.
“I cannot yet say why they did not finish their project on August 2,” he said.
In the meantime, the Public Transport Authority Group is trying to relieve congestion related to buses, taxis, the railway and water transportation.
The commercial capital’s everincreasing traffic has posed a major challenge to the government since the relaxation of car imports in 2011. The previous administration attempted to address the problem by building another seven expensive flyovers, projects the NLD-dominated regional hluttaw scrapped for being both costly and ineffective.
In lieu of the flyovers, to relieve the city’s worsening gridlock, parliament has heard proposals for a water taxi system; removal of the concrete dividers placed on some major streets to delineate bus lanes; reducing the number of taxis; and cracking down on the black market for parking permits.
The total number of vehicles in Yangon is estimated at about 500,000, including 324,729 privately owned cars, 141,904 trucks and 5000 buses.
Vehicles jam a major thoroughfare in Yangon.