Monday, May 4, 2009

Metro Light Rail Transit: The Fastest Way around Manila with a Kid in Tow

My son loves it when I take him with me to Quiapo on the MRT and LRT. He loves train rides and savors every moment of it. He gets really loud, mimics the station announcer and points out how small the buildings are in the horizon.

He gets upset when I choose to take a cab, he'll point at the speeding train parallel to us on EDSA just to prove his point. But he's right though - it is the fastest way around Manila.

I always hated taking the LRT during the 1980-90s. It was hell for women. But I'm glad now they have implemented a passenger cart for women, children, elderly and disabled citizens. I still think its a progressive move a decade late. What's sadder we only have 3 train lines to a population of 60 million compared to other countries.

In Berlin, they have trains that just loop all day in a circular track; You could fit in prams, take your bike to work or bring your large labradors with you. In Paris, the metro ticket is hooked up with the bus lines so when you get off you can still catch the bus on schedule using the same ticket. They have 18-19 metro lines for Paris, you have an average of 3-5 ways to get to one station or area.

I just wish the same efficient train and transport system for our country. We already have the perfect weather to go along with it. I guess maybe when my son reaches my age, it might just happen for the Philippines.