Quezon City Councilor Winnie Castelo is urging concerned government agencies, including local government units, to ensure permanent access to the newly opened Katipunan Avenue Extension.
He reacted to complaints from his constituents that the affluent Loyola Grand Villas village closed its section of the Katipunan road extension during the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-Quezon City police district shootout along Commonwealth Avenue last Feb. 24.
He said traffic enforcers closed the Fairview-Batasan Hills-bound lanes of Commonwealth Avenue in Batasan Hills at the height of the Feb. 24 shootout and in the aftermath of the ensuing investigation, stalling traffic for hours.
Katipunan Avenue Extension is a bypass road from Katipunan Avenue to Barangay Batasan Hills, Marikina City and San Mateo in Rizal.
The national government built the extension road to ease traffic congestion along Katipunan and Commonwealth Avenues.
The extension road traverses the upscale Loyola Grand Villas, Vista Real, Capitol Homes and North View subdivisions.
“Hundreds of vehicle owners trapped in the gridlock tried using Katipunan Avenue Extension as an alternate road. But to their surprise and dismay, Loyola Grand Villas padlocked its section of the bypass road, causing tremendous inconvenience and suffering to motorists,” Castelo said.
The residents of Batasan Hills, particularly Vista Real Classica, Capitol Homes, Tivoli, Vista Real Executive and other subdivisions are badly affected by the road closure.
The District 2 councilor urged authorities “to ensure permanent, total and unrestricted use by the public of Katipunan Avenue Extension, including sections that are inside private subdivisions like Loyola Grand Villas.”
“Private villages cannot shut down a public thoroughfare, which has to be accessible to the public at all times. These villages cannot choose to open the road only when it benefits them,” he said.
He called on the Department of Public Works and Highways that built the bypass road, Marikina City where Loyola Grand Villas is located, and regulators of subdivisions, such as the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board, to step into the matter.