MMDA starts groundwork for EDSA bike lanes

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 13) — The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) started to lay the groundwork for the construction of protected bicycle lanes along EDSA on Saturday.

According to MMDA Spokesperson Celina Pialago, the traffic engineering office of the agency visited the site and measured the space to be dedicated to the bike lanes.

The MMDA team has also set up temporary markings on the road, allotting a minimum of 1.2 meters of space for cyclists.

Pialago added that the said data will still be up for assessment and proper evaluation for final plans regarding the bicycle lanes.

“We see the urgency of having bike lanes. Kailangan na magka bike lanes since ‘yon na ang bagong mode of transportation ng mga kababayan natin.”

[Translation: We see the urgency of having bike lanes. Bike lanes should be put up immediately since this has become the new mode of transportation of our fellow Filipinos.]

Pialago also shared that the initial plan was to put up an elevated, protected bicycle lane, but she added that this will take time due to budget constraints.

“’Yong initial na plano namin sana, elevated... but that will take time. Due to budget constraints, syempre may budget issues ang lahat ng proyektong may construction,” she said.

[Translation: Our initial plan was to put up an elevated bike lane... but that will take time. Due to budget constraints, since there are budget constraints in all projects concerning construction.]

On Thursday, Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade and Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) officials, led by chairman Danny Lim, agreed to establish the bike lanes immediately.

The officials said that they fast-tracked the establishment of the protected bike lanes as more people shift to bicycles as mode of transportation during the coronavirus crisis.

Furthermore, it was discussed that the bike lanes will be located on roads, rather than on sidewalks. The project will be done in two phases -- interim and long term.

“Our goal is to move people while making sure of their safety," said Tugade.