Many Filipino pedestrians are daredevils. They risk their lives crossing busy streets for a shortcut to their destination. Some are unlucky; they get hit by a speeding car.
The Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) is not spared by such pedestrians in a hurry. One spot in the main and busiest highway in Metro Manila they like to cross is the intersection of EDSA and Scout Borromeo in Diliman, Quezon City.
A Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) official said the intersection averages 10 accidents per month involving pedestrians crossing under the MRT railway. To prevent another mishap, the agency put a steel footbridge in the area.
The footbridge is four storeys high and has steep stairs and grill fencing to keep pedestrians safe from falling. The high footbridge got a load of views and feedback from netizens when its photo was posted on Facebook.
Pedestrians, however, were not amused as the footbridge’s height makes it challenging to cross especially for old people and persons with disabilities.
MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia defended the height of the footbridge saying it was in compliance with the safety requirements of the MRT that there should be a three-meter distance between the power line and the footbridge floor. Garcia added that there are other EDSA footbridges of the same height or even higher because they go over train stations.
Garcia stressed that the footbridge ensures safe crossing in that portion of EDSA for those who want to cross there.
If jaywalkers have the adrenalin to play “patintero” against speeding vehicles in EDSA, they can also get high when they walk on the soaring footbridge.