‘Shopping malls will adjust operations during holidays’

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Shopping mall operators have agreed to adjust their business hours starting November 13 to address the expected traffic problems in the metropolis during the holiday season, according to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

MMDA said shopping malls will open at 11 a.m. and close at 11 p.m. The agreement was reached after the MMDA met with mall operators and other stakeholders to discuss traffic management plans in preparation for the approaching holiday season. The meeting was led by MMDA Deputy Chairman Usec. Frisco San Juan Jr. and Traffic Discipline Office Director for Enforcement Atty. Victor Nuñez.

“Due to the expected heavier traffic, we have decided to implement contingency measures,” San Juan said.

He added that mall-wide sales will only be allowed during weekends while deliveries will only be permitted from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m., “with the exception of perishable goods restaurants serving breakfast, and supermarkets.”

Shopping mall operators were also asked to submit their respective traffic management plans for their mall sales and promotional events two weeks before the scheduled date of such events.

Those with government satellite offices will be allowed to open as early as 9 a.m.

As part of the agency’s traffic management plan this Christmas season, traffic enforcers will be on duty until 12 midnight to “maximize” their visibility on major roads.

“We will deploy traffic enforcers until midnight every day to assist and manage the traffic flow in Metro Manila,” said San Juan.

Also, the MMDA will be working with the Department of Transportation to discuss possible extension of the public transport system’s operating hours to accommodate late-night commuters and mall employees.