By Jhon Aldrin Casinas
On World Bicycle Day, Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto bared the plan of the local government to set up bike lanes and provide their employees with transportation loans to encourage more people to use bicycles and other alternative modes of transport in their daily commute.
“Ngayon ang tamang panahon para isulong ang mga reporma sa ating sistema ng transportasyon sa Kalakhang Maynila (Now is the time to push for the reforms of our transportation system in Metro Manila),” Sotto said in a Facebook post on Wednesday.
With this, Sotto announced that the city government will be constructing “high priority bicycle corridors” along select roads in Pasig.
Based on the map he shared in his post, bicycle lanes will be set up along Eulogio Amang Rodriguez Avenue, West Bank Road, the entire stretch of C. Raymundo Avenue, A. Mabini Street, Dr. Sixto Antonio Avenue Extension, F. Manalo Street, and along Caruncho Avenue.
The bike lanes will pass through some of the busiest thoroughfares in Pasig.
Sotto said the city government will also institutionalize “employee transportation loans” to help its employees buy bicycles, scooters, and other alternative modes of transport.
In anticipation of more bicycles plying the streets, Sotto said more bike racks will be installed in select public places in the city.
He said the bike racks, which costs about P10,000 to P20,000 each, are way cheaper than the cost of maintaining parking spaces.
The mayor assured that “road safety treatments” will be placed along narrow streets to ensure the safety of cyclists.
Due to the limited operations of public transport during the community quarantine period, Sotto said a lot of people were forced to either walk or use bicycles to reach their workplaces.
“Lalo tuloy nating nakita ang kakulangan ng imprastraktura para sa mga alternatibong uri ng transportasyon (We are seeing more and more infrastructure shortages for alternative forms of transportation),” he said.
“Sa ordinaryong panahon, wala pang 30 percent ng tao ang bumabiyahe gamit ang private cars, ngunit mahigit 80 percent ng kalsada ang sasakop nila (In ordinary times, less than 30 percent of people travel by private cars, but they occupy more than 80 percent of the road),” he added.
The mayor has earlier encouraged people to consider biking to work as part of the “new normal” in commuting.
“We’re promoting bicycle riding and other alternative forms of transportation dahil alam po natin kung gaano ka traffic dito sa Pasig (because we know how much traffic we have here in Pasig),” he said.
According to him, the quarantine has proven that bike riding is possible here in the country.
“Ngayong quarantine, napatunayan natin na ang bike riding pwede dito sa Pilipinas kahit mainit (This quarantine, we have proven that bike riding is possible here in the Philippines even it’s hot),” Sotto said. #